Technology preferred over parks?

What exactly is a beautiful day at a Hoboken park anymore?

Why bother going outside if you’re connected to your digital leash?

Hoboken411 spends a considerable amount of time daily walking miles and miles around Hoboken. To observe the surroundings and take pictures both for this website and personal use. And some trends I noticed compelled me to update this post from earlier in the year…

When not behind the lens – I also enjoy the NYC views along the waterfront, with the crisp breeze and scenery. What I try NOT to do is remain connected to the “digital leash” as I call it. The constant checking of one or more of your communication devices (iPhone, tablet, Droid or whatever you use to contact the people in your life). Not always easy considering it’s my line of work – but I make a very conscious effort to at the very least mute my phone so I don’t check it like Pavlov’s Dog (“conditioned reflex”).

But as I walked through Pier A Park – I noticed that the MAJORITY of the people weren’t enjoying the weather, contemplating life, or just “being,” nope. They were all doing something on their smartphones. Whether it was Facebook (or other social network), emails, text or the latest celebrity gossip or political news – they were no doubt obsessed. See below – four out of five people just heads down!

Park patrons enjoy cell phones more in Hoboken NJ

Do you suffer from NoMoPhobia?

Earlier this year – a study in the UK indicated that up to 66% of the population suffers from “NoMoPhobia” – the fear of being without their phone.

Is that you? Can you “survive” without the phone? Do you, your friends or loved ones become panicked when they cannot reach someone immediately? Or get an immediate response to a text or message?

How long can you live without getting the latest “updates?”

Have you nearly bumped into someone walking on the sidewalk clicking away on their phone – not paying attention to where they were going?

Oh – and as I looked through my shots – I realized it was five out of six people with their heads down in the Matrix!

Park patrons enjoy cell phones more in Hoboken NJ 5 out of 6

411 Health Tip: Try to take designated breaks from the phone! Several hours if you can muster up the strength!

At what point will technology exceed human capacity to manage?


I tell people all the time that I think life was “good enough” when the most cutting edge technologies and communications were simple websites, emails and text messages.

As our devices get exponentially more capable, bandwidth increased to blazing fast speeds, and most people hold “computers” in their hands with more number-crunching power than the first space shuttle – you might wonder “what for?” and “are humans even capable of dealing with such much power and information in the long-term?”

Is business of being “social” even necessary? I guess if you make a good product, or tell a good story, or have a likable song, book or movie – you don’t really need too much help – but I saw this info-graphic over at Business Insider last week, and it made me cringe.

Too much communication

Is keeping up with social networking even profitable?

There are so many networks, platforms, places you can go online (through the traditional browser, mobile apps, etc) – that I wonder how it’s really diluting the market, consuming the time of regular customers (in the real physical world), and more.

The speed at which some kind of new technology, payment system, or marketing avenue pops up is ridiculous, and before you know it – the “next big thing” follows suit. “Tagging,” “liking,” and “sharing” to me – is a bunch of fluff. But the sad thing is – it exists, and millions of sheeple are playing this game without understanding the potential impact on society – and where it might lead us down the road. Which is why I gravitate towards people who are merely on the outer fringes of this phenomenon that’s quickly swallowing up the attention span and the ability for our citizens to actually think.

Yes, we need to communicate. But communicating effectively is not as simple as “how fast can my message get out and to how many people,” that probably only applies in urgent situations (i.e., “Fire!”) But when there are trillions of messages and ways to get those messages, doesn’t it all just become static?

Some companies now spend so much money covering all their bases in these social circles, I wonder if it even has a positive ROI, or are they doing it just out of fear that they’re missing out? Do they even honestly know?

Maybe it’s just me – but I don’t see how this frenzy can continue without some downside.

PS – watch the video below, and put this all into perspective.

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rich k
rich k
Sunday, October 21, 2012 9:09 am

Careful with that analogy, Eugene. A true Matrix nerd might tell you that the five were in contact with Morpheus, and only the last person was fully into the Matrix. (5 points for the first to ID the second reference; minus 10 points to any one who answers this rather than enjoy the day.)

Friday, May 25, 2012 11:07 am

Dabbled with all the social media toys for a little while and realized that in the end, it wasted too much of my time and I disconnected from it. I prefer messages with people in my life to remain relatively private. It felt like a virtual human zoo to me.

Friday, May 25, 2012 10:20 am

An article in the New Yorker yesterday about “Leaving Facebookistan:”

Perhaps it starts with exercising citizenship. I have decided to exercise mine—in Facebookistan, that is. This seems the right time to leave such a crowded and volatile public square.

It takes a while to find it, but if you are a Facebook user, there is a small settings button entitled “deactivate account.” If you click, Facebook displays the faces of people “who will miss you.” If you are determined nonetheless to depart, and scroll further down, you are required to choose a “reason for leaving” before you are permitted to go. Unfortunately, “inadequate citizen rule” or “doubts about corporate governance” are not among the choices. From the available list, I went with “I don’t feel safe on Facebook.”

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