Rejoice – We’ve Passed “Peak Technology”

“He took his scribbling pad on his knee and pushed back his chair so as to get as far away from the telescreen as possible. To keep your face expressionless was not difficult, and even your breathing could be controlled, with an effort: but you could not control the beating of your heart, and the telescreen was quite delicate enough to pick it up.”

George Orwell, from “1984”

 

 

 

 

 

January 24, 2017 – Tablet sales set to drop in 2017 as consumers turn to smartphones and laptops

August 3, 2017 – Apple, Samsung increase market share despite drop in global smartphone sales

January 11, 2017 – Personal computer sales fall for fifth year in a row – Phys.org

 

 

As you can see from the three quotes immediately above, the folks in charge are not your friends, and are lying to you about basically everything, including sales of smartphones, tablets, and personal computers.

And by “everything”, I mean that they’re also lying to you about motorcycle sales and fatalities:

2015 – Rising gasoline prices increase new motorcycle sales and fatalities.

September 6, 2015 – The return of cheap gas prices – The last time Labor Day gas prices were this low, George W. Bush was in his first term as president.

Just as they’re lying to you about increased bicycle sales in Egypt:

Sep 4, 2017 – Egyptians resort to cycling to bypass rising petrol prices | Middle East

Just as they’re lying to you about increased bicycle sales in the U.K.:

November 10, 2016 – Bike prices could rise because of Brexit vote, says Halfords

We all know that prices rise either when supply falls or demand increases, which is why the plausible-deniability control-meme ‘Brexit‘ is deployed in this case, to defray awareness of the positive trend of rising bicycling being seen around the globe.

But the folks in charge have literally worshipped Death all the way back to Babylon, and before, so “people are getting smarter and healthier!” is something that they just simply are not permitted to write, or speak, or think.

But let’s not focus on the negative! If you review the recent examples below, you’ll see how we’ve passed “Peak Technology” – we’re now stepping back and away, perhaps to later reintegrate it back into our lives in a more healthy, balanced way.

When the flock of birds, the school of fish turns, they do so apparently as one. That’s why my coining of the term “Peak Technology” is joined, in real time, by this:

October 30, 2017 – Tech backlash or peak smartphone? Young people of Gen Z are spending less time on smartphones for the first time.

The article goes on to say that “Gen Z – that is, the generation born after 1993 and following millennials – were spending 3.9 hours a day glued to their screens last year. But that’s inched down to 3.8 this year, according to Kantar TNS’s annual study.”

You’ll notice they gave you numbers, but carefully withheld the percentage of the decrease, as printing it would be more impactful. So I had to do the math. It’s a 2.6 percent decrease.

Since the folks in charge study this stuff to a gnat’s eyelash, we’ll easily be able to continue to watch the trend, going forward.

Look at how these examples are completely current:

October 5, 2017 – Pupils ‘increasingly turning to brick phones’ in backlash against social media.

October 12, 2017 – How Smartphones Are Draining Our Brain Power | On Point – WBUR

October 13, 2017 – OPINION: Flip phones are the smart substitute to smart phones …

Once someone has been conned, has fallen victim to a “confidence game“, one “wises up”, one “gets wise”. And one can never be tricked in the same way again.

Which is why I think we’ve passed Peak Technology…and why it’s game-over, Bad Guys.

TV sales dropping. TV connection rates dropping. Laptop and PC sales dropping. Tablet sales dropping. Wearable technology sales dropping. Smartphone sales dropping. Smartphone hours logged dropping.

That’s not to suggest that anyone rest upon their laurels. If you have not already done so, please consider distributing simple, inexpensive Orgonite devices where you live and work today, or sponsor a gifter near you, perhaps even through a vehicle such as this forum.

 

 

 

 

 

 

June 9, 2014 – Bike use is rising among the young, but it is skyrocketing among the old

 

2015 – Rising gasoline prices increase new motorcycle sales and fatalities.

 

September 6, 2015 – The return of cheap gas prices

The last time Labor Day gas prices were this low, George W. Bush was in his first term as president

 

September 10, 2015 – TV Shipments Post Largest Annual Decline in Five Years, IHS Says

 

October 26, 2016 – Smartwatch sales show sharp decline, report finds – BBC News

 

November 10, 2016 – Bike prices could rise because of Brexit vote, says Halfords | Business

 

January 11, 2017 – Personal computer sales fall for fifth year in a row – Phys.org

 

January 24, 2017 – Tablet sales set to drop in 2017 as consumers turn to smartphones and laptops

 

January 30, 2017 – The consumer electronics industry saw a 4 percent year-over-year decline in TV sales in 2015,

 

February 15, 2017 – US Traffic Deaths Rise for a Second Straight Year – The New York Times

Last year, traffic deaths increased 6 percent, to 40,200

 

March 7, 2017 – WikiLeaks: The CIA is using popular TVs, smartphones and cars to spy

 

March 14, 2017 – Nobody wears wearables? GoPro, Fitbit at all-time lows

 

April 4, 2017 – BlackBerry is in REAL trouble, and this is why | Tech | Life & Style …

 

April 21, 2017 – Why your smartphone is irresistible (and why it’s worth trying to resist)

 

April 21, 2017 – The Anti-Smartphone Revolution | Markets | Minyanville’s Wall Street

There’s a rising backlash against the smartphone dominant culture we find ourselves living in these days and that backlash is finally catching on.

 

May 9, 2017 – This Wearable Device Can Reduce Chronic Pain, No Drugs Required

 

May 14, 2017 – TV Ratings Are Way Down, But Does It Even Matter? – Vulture

 

June 25, 2017 – Are Smartphones Making Us Stupid? | Psychology Today

The mere presence of your smartphone can reduce cognitive capacity,

 

July 7, 2017 – What’s the deal with LG dropping the prices of its phones so quickly?

 

July 28, 2017 – U.S. traffic death increase caused by speeding, says new study – Curbed

 

August 3, 2017 – Apple, Samsung increase market share despite drop in global smartphone sales

 

August 3, 2017 – Fitbits discourage teenagers from exercising, study shows

 

August 4, 2017 – Garmin Reports 15 Percent Drop in Q2 2017 Fitness Revenue, Cites ‘Market Declines’

Twenty-six weeks into 2017, the company has reported $318.8 million in fitness revenue, a 10 percent drop year-over-year. CEO Cliff Pemble attributed the downturn to the “timing of product introductions” and general market declines.

 

August 22, 2017 – What Happened to Wearables? | Fashion-Tech, BoF Professional | BoF

 

August 24, 2017 – Gartner Says Worldwide Wearable Device Sales to Grow 17 Percent 

 

September 4, 2017 – Egyptians resort to cycling to bypass rising petrol prices | Middle East …

 

September 8, 2017 – TV connection numbers continue their decline, falling 0.3% in Q2 …

 

September 19, 2017 – Italy: TV sales down 10% in 2017 | – Advanced Television

 

September 25, 2017 – Tech stocks tumble; Facebook, Netflix and Nvidia drop 4.5% or more

(‘tumble‘, fun, cute, happy, like a running child, who gets grass stains on their knees, but gets up right away and runs again – ed)

 

September 26, 2017 – This tech stocks drop is different and could mean market decline ahead

 

September 27, 2017 – Citi: Thin lines, quicker ship times mean iPhone 8 sales to fall short

 

October 5, 2017 – Pupils ‘increasingly turning to brick phones’ in backlash against social media.

 

October 6, 2017 – Despite safer cars, traffic fatalities are on the rise – Oct. 6, 2017

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said that the number of traffic fatalities in 2016 rose nearly 6% compared with the previous year.

 

October 19, 2017 – Apple Stock Drops on iPhone 8 Demand, Wait for iPhone X – Fortune

 

October 12, 2017 – How Smartphones Are Draining Our Brain Power | On Point – WBUR

 

October 13, 2017 – OPINION: Flip phones are the smart substitute to smart phones

 

October 16, 2017 – John Stockton, Karl Malone and their flip phones hung out together at …

Karl Malone is a staunch proponent of the flip phone, going back to an interview in 2014

 

October 17, 2017 – Smartphones Are Killing Americans, But Nobody’s Counting

But he doesn’t think the numbers will come down until a backlash takes hold, one where it’s viewed as shameful to drive while

 

October 23, 2017 – Essential drops price of smartphone by $200. – USA Today

Not so Essential? Smartphone maker drops price by $200
October 26, 2017 – Smartwatch sales show sharp decline, report finds – BBC News

 

October 30, 2017 – Tech backlash or peak smartphone? Young people of Gen Z are spending less time on smartphones for the first time.

New research has found that 16 to 24-year-olds are spending less time on their smartphone for the first time.

Gen Z – that is, the generation born after 1993 and following millennials – were spending 3.9 hours a day glued to their screens last year. But that’s inched down to 3.8 this year, according to Kantar TNS’s annual study.

It might be time to call peak smartphone: more than a third of them said they wanted to cut down on screen time as they felt it was taking up too much of their time.

Even Tim Cook, the man who controls the iPhone, has signalled the smartphone obsession is too much. “I don’t like our products being used a lot,” he said earlier this month, placing a bet instead on augmented reality to “amplify human connection”.

The research company’s global connected solutions lead Michael Nicholas said that the devices are “too entwined in our everyday lives” to be ditched.

“However, there’s clearly a conflict between our perceptions on phone usage and acting on it,” he added.

Pensioners, however, are following the opposite trend, with time spent online growing from 36 to 54 minutes.

 

November 3, 2017 – HTC Shares Drop After Poor Figures and Google Sale Report – Fortune

The Taiwanese smartphone-maker HTC saw its share price drop over 8%

 

November 5, 2017 – Tablet sales drop for the 12th consecutive quarter from July through September.

 

November 6, 2017 – Ditching Smartphones: ‘Dumbphones’ With Basic Functions Appealing …

3 thoughts on “Rejoice – We’ve Passed “Peak Technology”

  1. edward

    I turned the laptop on and this is one of the articles that firefox suggested i read. I was like WOW this will definitely go well in Jeff’s thread about peak technology. It is an article from the New York Times of all places. It wasn’t long so i just copied and pasted the whole thing and removed the ads. I think what he is saying is exactly what Jeff is pointing out in this thread. A definite must read. Although everyone here most likely already feels similar to the author. It’s interesting that the sentiment is going mainstream though.

    “Our Love Affair With Digital Is Over”

    By DAVID SAX
    NOV. 18, 2017

    A decade ago I bought my first smartphone, a clunky little BlackBerry 8830 that came in a sleek black leather sheath. I loved that phone. I loved the way it effortlessly slid in and out of its case, loved the soft purr it emitted when an email came in, loved the silent whoosh of its trackball as I played Brick Breaker on the subway and the feel of its baby keys clicking under my fat thumbs. It was the world in my hands, and when I had to turn it off, I felt anxious and alone.

    Like most relationships we plunge into with hearts aflutter, our love affair with digital technology promised us the world: more friends, money and democracy! Free music, news and same-day shipping of paper towels! A laugh a minute, and a constant party at our fingertips.

    Many of us bought into the fantasy that digital made everything better. We surrendered to this idea, and mistook our dependence for romance, until it was too late.

    Today, when my phone is on, I feel anxious and count down the hours to when I am able to turn it off and truly relax. The love affair I once enjoyed with digital technology is over — and I know I’m not alone.

    Ten years after the iPhone first swept us off our feet, the growing mistrust of computers in both our personal lives and the greater society we live in is inescapable. This publishing season is flush with books raising alarms about digital technology’s pernicious effects on our lives: what smartphones are doing to our children; how Facebook and Twitter are eroding our democratic institutions; and the economic effects of tech monopolies.

    A recent Pew Research Center survey noted that more than 70 percent of Americans were worried about automation’s impact on jobs, while just 21 percent of respondents to a Quartz survey said they trust Facebook with their personal information. Nearly half of millennials worry about the negative effects of social media on their mental and physical health, according to the American Psychiatric Association.

    So what now?

    As much as we might fantasize about it, we probably won’t delete our social media accounts and toss our phones in the nearest body of water. What we can do is to restore some sense of balance over our relationship with digital technology, and the best way to do that is with analog: the ying to digital’s yang.
    Sign Up for the Opinion Today Newsletter

    Every weekday, get thought-provoking commentary from Op-Ed columnists, the Times editorial board and contributing writers from around the world.

    Thankfully, the analog world is still here, and not only is it surviving but, in many cases, it is thriving. Sales of old-fashioned print books are up for the third year in a row, according to the Association of American Publishers, while ebook sales have been declining. Independent bookstores have been steadily expanding for several years. Vinyl records have witnessed a decade-long boom in popularity (more than 200,000 newly pressed records are sold each week in the United States), while sales of instant-film cameras, paper notebooks, board games and Broadway tickets are all growing again.

    This surprising reversal of fortune for these apparently “obsolete” analog technologies is too often written off as nostalgia for a predigital time. But younger consumers who never owned a turntable and have few memories of life before the internet drive most of the current interest in analog, and often include those who work in Silicon Valley’s most powerful companies.

    Analog, although more cumbersome and costly than its digital equivalents, provides a richness of experience that is unparalleled with anything delivered through a screen. People are buying books because a book engages nearly all of their senses, from the smell of the paper and glue to the sight of the cover design and weight of the pages read, the sound of those sheets turning, and even the subtle taste of the ink on your fingertips. A book can be bought and sold, given and received, and displayed on a shelf for anyone to see. It can start conversations and cultivate romances.

    The limits of analog, which were once seen as a disadvantage, are increasingly one of the benefits people are turning to as a counterweight to the easy manipulation of digital. Though a page of paper is limited by its physical size and the permanence of the ink that marks it, there is a powerful efficiency in that simplicity. The person holding the pen above that notebook page is free to write, doodle or scribble her idea however she wishes between those borders, without the restrictions or distractions imposed by software.

    In a world of endless email chains, group chats, pop-up messages or endlessly tweaked documents and images, the walled garden of analog saves both time and inspires creativity. Web designers at Google have been required to use pen and paper as a first step when brainstorming new projects for the past several years, because it leads to better ideas than those begun on a screen.

    In contrast with the virtual “communities” we have built online, analog actually contributes to the real places where we live. I have become friendly with Ian Cheung, the appropriately opinionated owner of June Records, up the street from my home in Toronto. I benefit not only from the tax revenues that June Records contributes as a local business (paving the roads, paying my daughter’s teachers) but also from living nearby. Like the hardware store, Italian grocer and butcher on the same block, the brick and mortar presence of June adds to my neighborhood’s sense of place (i.e., a place with a killer selection of Cannonball Adderley and local indie albums) and gives me a feeling of belonging. I also have no doubts that, unlike Twitter, Ian would immediately kick out any Nazi or raving misogynist who started ranting inside his store.

    Analog excels particularly well at encouraging human interaction, which is crucial to our physical and mental well-being. The dynamic of a teacher working in a classroom full of students has not only proven resilient, but has outperformed digital learning experiments time and again. Digital may be extremely efficient in transferring pure information, but learning happens best when we build upon the relationships between students, teachers and their peers.

    We do not face a simple choice of digital or analog. That is the false logic of the binary code that computers are programmed with, which ignores the complexity of life in the real world. Instead, we are faced with a decision of how to strike the right balance between the two. If we keep that in mind, we are taking the first step toward a healthy relationship with all technology, and, most important, one another.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *