Is your iPhone making you stupid

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Jonnybgoode87, Sep 12, 2016.

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  1. Jonnybgoode87 macrumors member

    Jonnybgoode87

    Joined:
    May 11, 2016
    #1
    The modern phone is more than just a phone, lets face it - its probably the least used app on the iPhone except 'Stocks'.

    The things we can do with this little block of silicone, aluminium and glass sitting on our desks and in our pockets and bags is really incredible when you think of it, had you shown me an iPhone when I was 8, I probably wouldn't believe it was real. I mean, think about all the things any smartphone can do today and all the technology that it has made largely redundant.

    We all carry around the entirety of human knowledge in our pockets. If a disaster occurs on the other side of the world we know about it within literally seconds. It's our connection to the outside world and most of the people we know, its our bus timetable, our GPS, our ride home, the next dinner out, and the list goes on and on.

    But with all this knowledge and information in our hands, is your phone making you dumber? Having this permanent connection to all this information surely means that we're thinking less. Directions to the store? Theres an app for that. Calculating 20% tip, splitting your bill? Theres an app for that. These are not really complicated or taxing things to do, but now we don't have to even think about it. The phone comes out, seconds later, we have the answer.

    Perhaps not you, perhaps the generation growing up today, born into this connected world, are they going to be smarter than us? Or will they be even more reliant on iPhone 11 than we are on current generation iPhones.

    Don't get me wrong, I love my iPhone, its marvellous and I am truly grateful that I can appreciate it for the technological marvel that it is, but i wonder if my reliance on it has made me just slightly more stupid than when I had a Nokia 32-brick.
     
  2. robotphood macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2010
    #2
    Certainly depends how and what you use it for. Looking at pictures on social media all day is certainly different than reading articles, books, etc… It certainly seems that the younger generation have a hard time figuring things out without their phones. But my dad probably thought the same with me and my computer (the Internet boomed when I started high school).
     
  3. RedOrchestra Suspended

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2012
    #3
    Yeah see I don't do much of that extra stuff - primarily a telephone with a contact list (I wonder where that telephone / address book is), couple of messages, hardly use email anymore, but love having the camera on holidays and switching out for foreign data SIMs for messages and Skype.
     
  4. caligurl macrumors 68030

    caligurl

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    socal
    #4
    Uhm.... ya sometimes... I think... Let me look it up on my phone to be sure.... :p
     
  5. Spink10 Suspended

    Spink10

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    #5
    This question is truly above my pay grade!
     
  6. Nozuka macrumors 68000

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    Jul 3, 2012
    #6
    Hey Siri, what would you answer to that question?
     
  7. Caliber26 macrumors 68000

    Caliber26

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    Sep 25, 2009
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    #7
    I do agree that we've become very reliant on technology to do a lot of the trivial things we'd do ourselves before, such as finding directions to an address or even memorizing important telephone numbers of immediate family & close friends. Sadly, I can only say I know my parents' numbers by memory and that's about it.

    Where I do think these phones are hurting us the most - particularly with the younger generations - is the way we socialize and interact with each other. Nothing peeves me more than hanging out with a friend and seeing them mentally checked-out of our time together because they're more concerned with Snapchatting the entire experience or constantly checking their Instagram notifications.
     
  8. caligurl macrumors 68030

    caligurl

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    #8
    There used to be a time at work when, if you were talking to the boss you wouldn't DARE answer your phone... Now it's common place (actually with a conversation with anyone!) It's so rude to put the person you are speaking to in person "on hold" while you answer the effing phone!
     
  9. Retired Cat macrumors 65816

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    Jun 12, 2013
    #9
    I don't think my phone is making me stupid. I still calculate tips mentally. I use the maps app to see where I'm going ahead of time -- I do not rely on turn by turn navigation.

    The access to information is good. It allows me to quickly make an informed decision by reducing the time needed to gather the information.
     
  10. Samantha124 macrumors regular

    Samantha124

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2015
    #10
    I don't think it's making people as stupid as it effects relationships. People just don't pick up the phone and call anymore. I think it is a little sad seeing people out and about completely oblivious to life around them because they are so into their phones. It's messed up that I get irritated with my parents when they want to message on Facebook instead of calling.
     
  11. unglued macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2016
    #11
    Yep we're all messed up now...where's my fone?
     
  12. cableguy84 macrumors 6502a

    cableguy84

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    Sep 7, 2015
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    Essex
    #12
    siri never fails to make me feel dumber. it never understands what i'm saying
     
  13. urkel, Sep 12, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2016

    urkel macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2008
    #13
    Just like with all technological advances then the answer is both 'Yes" and "No".


    You can say that we've outsourced our pocket devices to handle basic things like tipping, directions historical facts. BUT... we are also using the same device to find answers to questions we never would've bothered asking (or answering) in the first place.

    How many times have you...
    - Try a new recipe found on Pinterest
    - Calculated the EXACT answer to a currency conversion.
    - Read news about a city you've never heard of
    - Found an alternate route to bypass a construction zone.
    - Discovered new music

    Its easy to use the typical "get off my lawn" criticisms of why technology is ruining people. But we can all make a long list of ways that technology opened doors that were previously closed to us.

    Now that is the question that concerns me. It's not the kids that are using it wrong, it's the parents that are putting a 9.7" wedge between their children and the world around them. An iPad can be an amazing educational tool but, just like any other tool, adult supervision is required.
     
  14. squidkitten macrumors 6502

    squidkitten

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    Mar 10, 2012
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    Colorado
    #14
    I don't think accessibility to information and instant connectivity to entertaining content or our friends is a bad thing, but I do believe that in the time since I have had regular access to a smartphone/personal laptop (since right as I was going into college) my attention span has started to slip. I sometimes wonder if my being constantly connected was a detriment to my productivity in school. That's more of a reflection on myself, however, than any real commentary on the state of technology in the world. Everyone relates to technology in their own ways, and there is a way for that to become more negative or destructive than positive.
     
  15. BigMcGuire Contributor

    BigMcGuire

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    Jan 10, 2012
    Location:
    California
    #15
    Instead of waiting until I get home to do my googling, I can pull out my phone and google questions I have instantly. Making me more stupid? The ability to store my thoughts, access my digital data, and take photos for memory's sake - making me more stupid? I don't think so.

    Depends on how you use it. Clash of Clans, Instagram, Facebook, Clash Royale, Hearthstone, etc... that can't make you smarter. But people who spend all their day watching TV vs those that spend their entire day doing a constructive hobby vs people who spend all day studying... those types of people are what makes someone smart or not. You can give a $200 hammer to a lazy person and not get anything out of it and a $5 hammer to a skilled worker and get a lot of work done.

    Cellphones don't make people lazy imo. People who are lazy will be lazy. People who are smart will be smart - with or without a cellphone.

    And the argument that cellphones do stuff for us... just because we're not doing math by hand doesn't mean people won't be smart. At some point we have to stand on the shoulders of those that came before us without reinventing the wheel over and over for there to be progress.
     
  16. Time Less macrumors 6502

    Time Less

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    Jul 29, 2010
    Location:
    Planet Earth
    #16
    Not stupid but I can't remember anything anymore. Phone numbers, spelling, where I parked my car, calculations, etc. Oh, and sometimes I yell in small apartment "HEY SIRI, where are you?!"
     
  17. jk4lebron23 macrumors 65816

    jk4lebron23

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    Apr 6, 2010
    Location:
    Nashville,TN
    #17
    All of this! Hanging out with friends is becoming more and more pointless because they have their heads buried in their phones and you have about 5 minutes of real interaction for an hour of hanging out.

    And while we are at it it isn't even strictly friends that it's bad with nowadays, family members are just as bad!
     
  18. utahman130, Sep 12, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2016

    utahman130 macrumors 6502a

    utahman130

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2012
    #18
    The one place where I can't stand people checking their phones constantly is at concerts. I used to take videos at concerts, but I realized that it was a lot more fun not looking through a screen. Every concert I go to – because I'm short – I end up looking through a wall of phones, which isn't fun.

    Oh, another one. It annoys me when people are walking to class with their heads buried in their phones on campus. There are people zooming through on bikes and longboards, someone's going to walk right in front of a bike while they are not paying attention.
     
  19. BigMcGuire Contributor

    BigMcGuire

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    Jan 10, 2012
    Location:
    California
    #20
    Never understood that. Especially at the Hollywood Bowl. Kids are there playing games (Pokemon Go) after their parents paid $$$ for tickets - and by kids I mean 14-20. Then when there are good times like John Williams - even though I'm 5'11, I get to look through a wall of phones.
     
  20. Caliber26 macrumors 68000

    Caliber26

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    Sep 25, 2009
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    #21
    The concert thing is so obnoxious. First of all, the videos/pics they end up getting with their phones are going to turn out looking like sh*t 95% of the time. Overexposed, grainy, out of focus, or very poor in quality because of the zooming they'll have to do.

    There's literally no purpose to those pics & videos aside from sharing online as proof that they were there. IMO, a simple check-in on social media, along with a selfie with the stage in the background, is more than enough. I mean, seriously, who goes back and relives these concerts by looking at crappy videos on their phones? Chances are they'll go on YouTube and search for a high-quality video taken by someone in the first few rows or the official footage that ends up on YouTube from the inevitable concert DVD that all artists release after their touring is done.

    I get why people do it. I used to do be the same way but I've come to accept that those pics and videos are pointless and I rather give my full attention to the show and experience it with my eyes, rather than looking at it through a 4.7" screen. The memories will go a much longer way!
    --- Post Merged, Sep 12, 2016 ---
    OMG, yes! It used to feel like a generational thing but now it's our own parents AND EVEN GRANDPARENTS doing it as well. There have been a couple of instances when I've been out at dinner with my folks and I looked up from my phone to realize that they, too, were glued to their iPhones. You expect that type of thing from your friends but to see your parents doing it as well is a little jolting. It'll be interesting (rather scary) to see how this shapes the way we relate and socialize with those around us. I'd say this whole thing is still in its infancy but I'm wondering how it'll be in 10, 15, 20 years when this type of behavior is the norm.
     
  21. Retired Cat macrumors 65816

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    Jun 12, 2013
    #22
    I'm old enough to remember when telephone calls over landlines were viewed as a threat to peoples' relationships.

    I actually hate talking on the phone. I rather get a text or email from someone inviting me to visit, and then go see them in person to talk. I prefer only to talk on the phone for stuff that has to be communicated right away.

    The key I think to making phones less intrusive is to turn off audio notifications from apps as much as possible. Dings and beeps make people curious and check their device. Text messages are the only audio notification I really use. I also make use of Do Not Disturb a lot, so that only emergency calls from people on my favorites list (family members and close friends) will cause the phone to ring. If I'm visiting people in person I use Do Not Disturb on my iPhone so that I won't be distracted.
     
  22. jk4lebron23 macrumors 65816

    jk4lebron23

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    Apr 6, 2010
    Location:
    Nashville,TN
    #23
    Yes! My grandparents just started texting and 1. It's annoying because they send 10 texts in a row and half of it is misspelled or just impossible to read and 2. They text me all the time! I love them to death but I don't enjoy texting anyone all the time.

    The worst is parents and grandparents with Facebook and news apps, I never have to turn on a tv or check the news because they've already informed me of everything!
     
  23. Caliber26 macrumors 68000

    Caliber26

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    Sep 25, 2009
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    #24
    So true! :D My grandma's most used app on her iPad is Facebook and she basically lives on it. She shares everything she sees in her Newsfeed. Literally. Everything. I had to unfollow her lol.
     
  24. robotphood macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2010
    #25
    All true. I do think though that smartphones are becoming more and more distracting every day. When I started using smartphones (windows mobile) it was mostly for enthusiast and people in business. While we could access most of the modern web in some form, we certainly did not have super computers in our pockets that could replace your camera, stream HD video, play console quality games, and connect to the plethora of social media networks at broadband speed. Not that any of those are bad things, smartphones are for entertainment as well, but definitely easy to distract yourself with.
     

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