Technology is designed to be addictive. And a society that is “mobile dependent” has a hard time spending even minutes away from their app-enabled smartphones. In 2017, U.S. adults spent an average of three hours and 20 minutes a day using their smartphones and tablets. This is double the amount from just five years ago, according to an annual survey of internet trends. Another survey suggests ...[Read More]
In 2004 at a Nokia event in Helsinki a nerdy engineer showed off a fancy new concept that he hoped would be a big hit. Calling it an “automatic multimedia diary” it was a way to upload pictures, thoughts and other titbits from a mobile phone to an online site. Using the then popular concept of blogging, he called it a Lifeblog. “Lifeblog is a PC and mobile phone software combinat...[Read More]
Of all screen-time enabling devices, smartphones are the truly ubiquitous ones, which in essence makes them tools of equity in the 21st century that provide access to billions of people around the world.
There’s little doubt the information technology revolution has improved our lives. But unless we find a new form of electronic technology that uses less energy, computing will become limited by an “energy crunch” within decades. Even the most common events in our daily life – making a phone call, sending a text message or checking an email – use computing power. Some tasks, such as watching videos...[Read More]
We will remember 2017 as an appalling year for natural disasters. The US has endured its most expensive hurricane season, amounting to over $200 billion of damage. Mexico City experienced a terrible earthquake that killed over 200 people, while severe tropical storms forced tens of thousands of evacuations in Macau, Hong Kong and Tokyo. It comes months after the UN’s head of disaster planning warn...[Read More]
We can learn a lot about things by studying how they move through the world and interact with the environment. In the past, for example, it was possible to study the mobility of people within the United States by monitoring things such as the movement of banknotes. Today we can use something that is much more global and widely available than US cash. Mobile phones have almost totally infiltrated h...[Read More]
China’s Xiaomi is doing very well for itself of late. It’s one of the largest forces in the Chinese mobile market and it is making inroads into other markets as well. The company makes everything from mobile phones to drones to laptops and electric bicycles and it makes them cheaply and well. But we could always do with things being a little cheaper. Xiaomi has a plan to make their mob...[Read More]