Nomophobians, Social Medians and Related Gaming Addicts: Just Lonely, Wasting Wannabees? Meaningful Life Anyone? Multiple Related Entries Including "Kids And Screen Time: What Does The Research Say?"; "What Too Much Screen Time Does To Your Eyes"; Benefits of Doodling & Cursive Writing; Related Humour & Music

Communicating over long distances has come a long way from drum beats, smoke signals, flag waving, morse code, ringing of the dinner bell and plain old yelling out the back door. Ah yes, the good old days...

And now -

Whether we're seated at a desk at home or at work, or mobile, on the go, we're increasingly glued to screens of varying sizes, passing time or meeting a deadline. More and more, we're connected, wired in or wireless, plugged in or battery driven as need be with smart phones, tablets, laptops and hard drives with ever increasing storage and power. So much connectivity begs the question: Are we empowered by or slaves to communication technologies? Facilitated or debilitated? Connected in meaningful ways or disconnected in dehumanizing ways? Such is the paradox that comes with ever available, ubiquitous smart technologies that permeate our global culture.

Convenient, isn't it? We used to have to travel so as to "meet up" with people for personal and/or business relations. Now we can exchange salutations with someone on the other side of the planet without leaving the comfort of our humble abode at prices most can't afford. Yet many see advances in communication technologies fraught with hidden Trojan Horses we have only recently started to study and document.

Suddenly (in evolutionary terms) -

We're out there... There but not there. Oh, we're connected in a manner, yet at times oblivious to our surroundings, so focused are we on whatever task or game is at hand, on screen, ear buds in place, music or whatever the focus. Our hands busily surf the cloud, thoughts are exchanged with words unspoken, no eye contact required.

Why do so many of us prefer to disconnect from much of our surroundings? Is it the traffic noises, news, personalized collective angst that is the new taboo, unspoken truths about social/political/economic realities we are best distracted from so as to minimize stress, loneliness, boredom, lack of life purpose? As in if we don't talk about how precarious we are as a specie, all our problems, personal and otherwise will be out of mind? No need now to look into the eyes of that real person we just brushed against yet don't know and possibly never will. We're just walking by, on our way, there, not there...

WHAT IF we were to all stop wearing headsets or earbuds while outdoors? No screen time while outdoors either...

Immediate possibilities:

• Traffic safety
• Potential for eye to eye street level interpersonal connectivity
• Birdsong (if you're lucky enough to appreciate such subtleties)

And WHAT IF all gaming had to be done face to face?

Potential possibilities:

• Better heads up and read on your real and/or potential adversaries
• Potential for more meaningful personal interactions/relationships beyond gaming
• Less lonely
• Less isolated

And WHAT IF we were to shut down our smart phones, computers and related technologies indefinitely?

Long term possibilities:

• Self discovery within a meaningful collective and beyond, so -

See below posts on nomophobia, excessive gaming and screen time, then consider options (best practices) essential to a healthy, vibrant, creative existence.

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How Is Your Phone Changing You?

Published on Jun 2, 2016

Should you be worried about your cellphone?

6 Reasons For A Cellphone Vacation

Courtesy of:
ASAPSCIENCE INC.

Category: Science & Technology
License: Standard YouTube License

Web junkies of the gaming kind are also caught up in the net...

China's Web Junkies: Internet Addiction Documentary | Op-Docs | The New York Times

Published on Jan 21, 2014

A short documentary about a Chinese boot-camp-style treatment center for young men "addicted" to the Internet.

Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

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Homophobia is not new, as demonstrated by the below entry from 2013.

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Mobile Phone Anxiety Survey Says 'Nomophobia' On The Rise

Published on Aug 25, 2013

Millions of us carry mobile phones - some people say they can't live without them. But according to UK researchers if you're more concerned about what you're missing on your phone, rather than your family and friends, you could be suffering from 'no mobile phone phobia'. Or Nomophobia. Al Jazeera's Phil Lavelle reports.

Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

Meanwhile, a year earlier...

Nomophobia Rehab

Published on Dec 4, 2012

Does the thought of being without your iPhone or Droid send waves of panic through your body? If so, you might have "nomophobia" (no-mobile-phone-phobia).But don't worry! Just because you're addicted doesn't mean there's nothing you can do about it.We got some tips from Clinical Psychologist Elizabeth Waterman from the Morningside Recovery Center in Newport Beach, Calif. She treats patients with nomophobia!

Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

Quit Social Media | Dr. Cal Newport | TEDxTysons

Published on Sep 19, 2016

'Deep work' will make you better at what you do. You will achieve more in less time. And feel the sense of true fulfillment that comes from the mastery of a skill.

Cal Newport is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Georgetown University. In addition to studying the theoretical foundations of our digital age, Newport also writes about the impact of these technologies on the world of work. His most recent book, Deep Work, argues that focus is the new I.Q. in the modern workplace and that the ability to concentrate without distraction is becoming increasingly valuable. He previously wrote So Good They Can’t Ignore You, a book which debunks the long-held belief that “follow your passion” is good advice, and three popular books of unconventional advice for students.

Category: Nonprofits & Activism
License: Standard YouTube License

A year offline, what I have learned | Paul Miller | TEDxEutropolis

Published on Sep 13, 2013

Paul Miller is an American Technology Journalist from Springfield, Missouri and senior editor for The Verge. During the past year he decided to disconnect from the hyperconnected world in an attempt to 'find himself' and become more productive. He abandoned the internet and disconnected from all Social Media, returning to a life before the net, apps and smartphones.

His experiment gained worldwide media attention when he published his article 'I'm still here' at The Verge. After a year of living 'disconnected' he published his findings and caused quite a discussion on hyperconnectivity and the influence of the internet on our daily lives.

At TEDxEutropolis Paul Miller will speak on his experiment 'Without the Internet' and his view on the intertwined worlds of living both online and offline. If you want to read his article entitled 'I'm still here' for The Verge, just follow the links. In the article Miller explains how the internet (and leaving it) influenced his life, which eventually also inspired a video documentary.

Category: Nonprofits & Activism
License: Standard YouTube License

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Kids And Screen Time: What Does The Research Say?

August 28, 20142:59 PM ET
JUANA SUMMERS
Courtesy of: http://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2014/08/28/343735856/kids-and-screen-time-what-does-the-research-say

Kids are spending more time than ever in front of screens, and it may be inhibiting their ability to recognize emotions, according to new research out of the University of California, Los Angeles.

The study, published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior, found that sixth-graders who went five days without exposure to technology were significantly better at reading human emotions than kids who had regular access to phones, televisions and computers.

The UCLA researchers studied two groups of sixth-graders from a Southern California public school. One group was sent to the Pali Institute, an outdoor education camp in Running Springs, Calif., where the kids had no access to electronic devices. For the other group, it was life as usual.

At the beginning and end of the five-day study period, both groups of kids were shown images of nearly 50 faces and asked to identify the feelings being modeled. Researchers found that the students who went to camp scored significantly higher when it came to reading facial emotions or other nonverbal cues than the students who continued to have access to their media devices.

"We were pleased to get an effect after five days," says Patricia Greenfield, a senior author of the study and a distinguished professor of psychology at UCLA. "We found that the kids who had been to camp without any screens but with lots of those opportunities and necessities for interacting with other people in person improved significantly more."

If the study were to be expanded, Greenfield says, she'd like to test the students at camp a third time — when they've been back at home with smartphones and tablets in their hands for five days.

"It might mean they would lose those skills if they weren't maintaining continual face-to-face interaction," she says.

A Wake-Up Call For Educators

There's a big takeaway for schools, Greenfield says.

"A lot of school systems are rushing to put iPads into the hands of students individually, and I don't think they've thought about the [social] cost," she explains. "This study should be, and we want it to be, a wake-up call to schools. They have to make sure their students are getting enough face-to-face social interaction. That might mean reducing screen time."

The results of the UCLA study seem to line up with prior research, says Marjorie Hogan, a pediatrician at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis and a spokeswoman for the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

"Common sense tells me that if a child's laying on his or her bed and texting friends instead of getting together and saying, 'Hey, what's up,' that there's a problem there," she says. "I want people interacting ... on a common-sense level, and an experiential level. It does concern [me]."

Hogan relates the UCLA study's findings back to research on infants.

"When babies are babies, they're learning about human interaction with face-to-face time and with speaking to parents and having things they say modeled back to them," she says. "That need doesn't go away."

How Much Screen Time Is Too Much?

For decades the AAP has warned that children need to cut back on their screen time. The group's latest prescription: Entertainment "screen time" should be limited to two hours a day for children ages 3-18. And, for 2-year-olds and younger, none at all.

The sixth-graders who made up the sample in the UCLA study self-reported that they spent an average of more than four hours on a typical school day texting, watching television and playing video games.

The San Francisco nonprofit Common Sense Media studies screen time from birth and, in 2013, found that children under 8 (a younger sample than the kids in the UCLA study) were spending roughly two hours a day in front of a screen.

"If used appropriately, it's wonderful," Hogan says of digital media. "We don't want to demonize media, because it's going to be a part of everybody's lives increasingly, and we have to teach children how to make good choices around it, how to limit it and how to make sure it's not going to take the place of all the other good stuff out there."

Some research suggests that screen time can have lots of negative effects on kids, ranging from childhood obesity and irregular sleep patterns to social and/or behavioral issues.

"We really need to be sure that children, and probably older people, are getting enough face-to-face interaction to be competent social beings," Greenfield says. "Our species evolved in an environment where there was only face-to face-interaction. Since we were adapted to that environment, it's likely that our skills depend on that environment. If we reduce face-to-face interaction drastically, it's not surprising that the social skills would also get reduced."

What About 'Educational Screen Time'?

Research out of the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, a nonprofit research and production institute affiliated with the Sesame Workshop, suggests that less than half the time kids between the ages of 2 and 10 spend in front of screens is spent consuming "educational" material.

The center also looked at family income as a determining factor of screen time. Lower-income families reported that their children spent more time engaging with educational screen activities than higher-income families did. Fifty-seven percent of screen time for families earning less than $25,000 was education-focused, compared with 38 percent for families earning between $50,000 to $99,000.

How To Limit Kids' Screen Time?

Of course, as media multiplies, it's increasingly difficult to manage kids' screen time. Where several decades ago, television was the only tech distraction, kids now have smartphones, tablets and laptops — not to mention electronic games.

"We need to make media a part of our lives, but in a planned, sensible way," Hogan says.

Her suggestion: Families should encourage a "healthy media diet" for their children. Parents and kids should work together to decide how much time to spend with media every day, and to make sure good choices are being made about what media to take in.

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What Too Much Screen Time Does To Your Eyes

By BIANCA SEIDMAN CBS NEWS August 13, 2015, 2:11 PM
Courtesy of: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/screen-time-digital-eye-strain/

As people of all ages are spending more hours focused on digital screens, their eyes are getting an exhausting endurance workout.

Eye strain from hours of screen time can result in eye irritation, dryness, fatigue or blurred vision, and such problems are increasingly common, according to a new report.

"Some of us are using these things for up to nine hours a day. Your eye muscles have to focus at that near range and that can be fatiguing," Dr. Christopher Starr, an associate professor of ophthalmology at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, told CBS "This Morning."

"You can imagine if you were at the gym and you held a dumbbell, your bicep would be extremely sore nine hours later.... Same thing for your eyes, you have to take breaks to relieve those muscles," he said.

A vast majority of American adults surveyed -- 93 percent -- spends two hours or more per day in front of some sort of screen, from televisions to computers to smartphones to e-readers, according to the report by The Vision Council, an advocacy group for optical manufacturers and distributors. Sixty-one percent said they spend five or more hours and 30 percent said they look at screens more than nine hours per day. The group surveyed more than 9,700 U.S. adults.

The range of media devices the respondents were using was broad. Sixty-nine percent of people reported used smartphones, 58 percent used laptops, 52 percent used a desktop computer and 43 percent used a tablet or e-reader. Seventy-seven percent said they watched television.

Activities Associated With Digital Device Use:

Work: 44%
Recreational Reading: 43%
Waking Up: 38%
Travel: 32%
Meal Preparation: 26%

Courtesy: THE VISION COUNCIL

Most digital screens are backlit and emit blue light, or high-energy visible (HEV) light wavelengths, which the group said can cause irritation and possibly long-term damage to the retina. Blue light is also known to suppress the sleep hormone melatonin, causing an artificial feeling of wakefulness and disrupting sleep patterns, which can add to eye strain.

Dryness, caused by reduced blinking while staring at screens, is also a common factor in digital eye strain. A person's blink rate -- normally about 15-20 times per minute -- can decrease by up to half when people are fixated on what they're viewing on a screen.

"When you're not blinking, and you're staring and your eyes are wide open, tears evaporate very quickly," Starr said. "You get dry spots, blurred vision, it can cause redness, pain, and over the course of the day it just worsens and worsens."

Just like other muscles in the body, the eyes need a varied "workout" and some respite from prolonged strain.

"What we recommend to reduce this -- what's called computer vision syndrome -- is to follow something called the 20-20-20 rule," said Starr. "Every 20 minutes that you're on a computer or a mobile device, look away from the computer at an object at 20 feet away or further for 20 seconds or more. And that will let those eye muscles relax."

Anti-reflective lenses on eyeglasses or filters for screens can also help absorb some of the blue light and limit how much reaches the retina and into the central nerve of the eye.

People with myopia, or nearsightedness, and other vision issues like hyperopia, astigmatism and presbyopia, may be at increased risk for digital eye strain. The National Eye Institute says that myopia has become much more common in recent generations. More than 34 million Americans have myopia, projected to reach 40 million by 2030.

In addition to taking breaks from focus on digital screens and using eyewear, doctors recommend adjusting light exposure to help with eye strain, both indoors and outdoors.

Contrary to popular opinion, more indoor light may actually be worse for reading, when it's on a screen. Too much light competing with the device's light creates glare. And a bright, white background is also worse than a cooler, gray tone.

Getting enough outdoor light is also critical to helping eye muscles develop and stay healthy.

Though the highest reports of eye strain are from the groups who likely use the screens for work the most -- Millennials and Generation X -- children are also a concern. The report says more than 23 percent of kids use digital screens more than three hours a day.

"One of the newest studies I've seen actually shows that the kids -- when you're doing all this reading and using computers, you're indoors," said Starr. "There's some evidence that you need some natural light, for the eye's maturity and if you don't have that natural light, the eyes might get longer and more near-sighted."

"The computers aren't going anywhere, mobile devices aren't going anywhere, " he added. "They're very useful, obviously.... We're not saying don't use them, we're saying when you do use them, use them wisely and smartly."

© 2015 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.g

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Doodling & Cursive Writing:

You may be surprised with how both doodling and cursive writing benefit your cognitive skills!

Doodling Helps You in School?

Published on Mar 19, 2013

Classroom sketchers and scribblers rejoice: doodling can improve your recall! In this DNews video, Laci looks at a new study that gives hope to everyday artistes.

Read More:

"What Does Doodling do?"
http://pignottia.faculty.mjc.edu/math...

"Doodling is a way of passing the time when bored by a lecture or telephone call. Does it improve or hinder attention to the primary task?"

"Can Doodling Improve Memory and Concentration?"
http://www.spring.org.uk/2013/01/can-...

"An experiment suggests doodling may be more than just a pleasant waste of time and paper."

"Boredom Explained (in under 300 words)"
http://www.spring.org.uk/2013/01/bore...

"What is the best psychological strategy to avoid boredom?"

DNews is a show about the science of everyday life. We post two new videos every day of the week.

Category: Science & Technology
License: Standard YouTube License

How to Doodle: Some Tips (50x speed)

Published on Oct 27, 2012

Category: Howto & Style
License: Standard YouTube License

Doodling in Math Class: DRAGONS

Published on Aug 19, 2013

You can totally draw fractals freehand, yo.

Things to look up if you want: Dragon Curve, Sierpinski's Triangle, L-systems, fractals, space-filling curves.

Category: Education
License: Standard YouTube License

Why Write? Penmanship For The 21st Century | Jake Weidmann | TEDxMileHigh

Published on Jul 14, 2014

This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences. What is the future of writing in the digital age, and why does it matter? In this surprising talk, Master Penman Jake Weidmann explores the connections between the pen and how we learn, think, and carry our cultural heritage at a time when the very act of writing is being dropped from school curricula across the country.

Jake Weidmann became the youngest person to receive his Master Penman certificate in July 2011. He works across several mediums including drawing in pencil and charcoal; pen and ink; painting in acrylic, airbrush, oil and gouache; sculpting in wood, bone, antler and clay; and is versed in numerous forms of calligraphy. He is best known for the integration of flourishing and hand- lettering in his art. Jake also designs his own hand-made pens. He, like his pens, travels the globe, reintroducing this Old World art form and cultivating its relevance in the world of today, of tomorrow, and forevermore.

Category: Nonprofits & Activism
License: Standard YouTube License

Jeanne Robertson - "Learning Cursive ... Or Not"

Published on Jan 10, 2015

Jeanne is on SiriusXM Radio - this clip is from Jeanne's upcoming DVD Fabulously Funny

Category: Comedy
License: Standard YouTube License

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Nomophobia Humour:

Danger lurks at every corner...

Very Funny Cartoon Animation About Smartphone Addiction

Published on Apr 22, 2015

Phone addiction could be dangerous.

Take a look at the Speaking Mind app – it's a great software that frees your eyes and hands for other tasks and may save your life some day. http://speind.me

Category: People & Blogs
License: Standard YouTube License

Nomophobia Every Day (Apple iPhone TV Ad Parody)

Published on Oct 24, 2013

Admit it, you have nomophobia.

A Parody of Apple's "Music/Photos Every Day" Commercial.

Category: Comedy
License: Standard YouTube License

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Related Music:

This first track is abstract yet strangely appropriate, especially if you have your headset on while walking across a red light on a busy day.

James Egbert - Nomophobia

Published on Jan 25, 2017

Category: Music
License: Standard YouTube License

The Marvelettes - Please Mr. Postman (1961)

Uploaded on Feb 5, 2011

Writers: Georgia Dobbins, Brian Holland, Robert Bateman, Freddie Gorman, William Garrett
Releasing date: August 21, 1961
Format: 7" single
Label: Tamla Motown (T 54046)
Recording: Hitsville USA, Detroit (USA), April 1961
Line-up: Katherine Anderson, Wyanetta "Juanita" Cowart, Gladys Horton, Georgeanna Tillman, Wanda Young
Musicians: The Funk Brothers (Benny Benjamin, drums; Eddie "Bongo" Brown, percussions; Marvin Gaye, drums; James Jamerson, bass; Richard "Popcorn" Wylie, piano)
Producer: Brianbert (Brian Holland & Robert Bateman)
Also included on the LP "Please Mr. Postman" (Tamla, TM 228)

Other versions: The Backbeat Band; The Beatles; The Carnebees; The Carpenters; Octavio Cavalli; Chibras; China Dolls; Richard Clayderman; Cowsills; El Cuarteto de Nos; Peggy Evers; Whoopi Goldberg; Hugaria; Les Kelton; The Koppykatz; Punkles; Quebec; Revolver; Helen Shapiro.

Category: Music
License: Standard YouTube License

Sam Smith - Writing's On The Wall (from Spectre)

Published on Oct 4, 2015

Writing’s On The Wall’ by Sam Smith, the official theme song from Spectre

Category: Music
License: Standard YouTube License
Music: "Writing's On The Wall" by Sam Smith (Google Play)

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WHAT IF there's to be an "Internet of Us"?

Our brains would be WIFI'ed to the cloud, nervous systems straddling a quantum leap to the known universe and beyond.

Would that be a Utopian or potentially a Dystopian development for humanity? Discuss...

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