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Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

Are you smarter than your Smart Phone, or it is smarter than you?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (20277 points ) December 11th, 2013

Are you smarter than your Smart Phone or does your Smart Phone makes you feel like a dummy? I have friends that have Smart Phones and it make them feel dumb because there are so many gadgets and apps they can’t figure out how to do it right off the cuff. It takes some of them days and some even give up and avoid using the feature. Even things like texting, or the way they have to do it, cause them to avoid it, or they can’t get use to the touchscreen. Does your Smart Phone seem smarter than you or can you master most of it without ever breaking out the user manual?

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39 Answers

Pachy's avatar

I used to think I was at least just as smart as my iPhone, and then one day I stumbled onto a setting I’d never heard of, loved it, and emailed a friend raving about it, thinking he would be impressed with my brilliance. He immediately emailed me back and said, “ARE YOU KIDDING??? I knew how to do THAT the day I opened the box.

Now I find myself reading or viewing anything about iPhone tips.

jerv's avatar

I am smarter than my phone. and far smarter (at least with regards to technology) than most other people who own a smartphone. Most people have technophobia which shuts off their brain whenever technology enters the picture. They may be otherwise intelligent, but they have a mental block against computers and such that effectively reduces their IQ by at least half.

Personally, I consider those people disabled. The skills to use technology effectively are as important now as hunting was back in the days of cavemen. If you lack those skills, you will have a harder time getting a job, and even things like paying bills will be difficult at best.

While economics is a great and contentious divide between the “haves” and “have-nots”, technology is creating another huge rift; one between those who can adapt to a changing world and those who will fall behind.

Pachy's avatar

…they have a mental block against computers and such that effectively reduces their IQ by at least half. Personally, I consider those people disabled.

Wow, @Jerv, pretty harsh, dude. Your world sounds like it’s divided between nothing but brainacs and idiots, with no room for others such as artists, writers, poets, musicians, teachers, even your own Aunt Fannie who may have a hard time with a mobile phone or computer but who thrive and contribute in so many other ways.

Pachy's avatar

…and I’ll be some of ‘em even have IQs as high or higher than yours. ;-)

YARNLADY's avatar

I recently found out my (opposite of smart) very old cell phone takes pictures. I didn’t know it could until my four year old grandson showed me.

jerv's avatar

@Pachyderm_In_The_Room You omitted a few parts of my post there. Things like “otherwise intelligent”. I see it not as a matter of intellect, but of psychology.

Wouldn’t you consider somebody who lacks basic life skills to be at a disadvantage? If not, then try not budgeting, not tying your own shoes, and not eating with silverware for a while.

It takes more than IQ to survive; you have to have skills as well. Skills that I have seen children pick up. Are you smarter than a fifth grader?

SecondHandStoke's avatar

My smartpnone (Apple product of course) is smarter than me.

I have various mental issues (ADHD, etc,) that make the most seamless interface between me and my devices critical.

Having something work as intuitively and logically as possible can make the difference between my being able to use it or not.

Now that Apple is on top of it’s game it’s hip to deride them but I shudder to think of a technological world where their class topping ergonomics didn’t exist.

All man made things can be thought of in two ways. What it does for you and what you must do for it.

Apple products, Honda products understand the significance of this better than any of their competitors.

It’s simple: I lay out my money and you, the product, serve me as comprehensively and simply as possible.

jonsblond's avatar

I’m smart enough to know that I don’t need a smartphone. It would be a waste of money for me to own one.

rojo's avatar

It can do things that I do not know it can do but does that make it smarter than me? I guess the acid test would be if it did them when I was not around; like at two in the morning upload all my daily calls to the NSA.

Pachy's avatar

I omitted otherwise intelligent, @jerv, because you immediately went on to make this astonishingly simplistic statement: but they have a mental block against computers and such that effectively reduces their IQ by at least half. I’d love to see your facts and figures on this.

I don’t disagree that, in your words, _If you lack those skills, you will have a harder time getting a job—though I would have added “depending on the type of job”—but again, I think your statement is an armchair opinion and generalization.

At any rate, to each his own opinions, generalization, views and beliefs. Have a good evening.

jerv's avatar

@Pachyderm_In_The_Room One of the most computer illiterate people I know is a mechanical engineer who has 8 patents and an IQ in the 150s. Definitely smart, but computers and smartphones are beyond him. And he’s far from unique in that.

YARNLADY's avatar

@jerv As long as you bring it up, I have a very high I. Q., but with so many other computer literate people in my family, I don’t see any need to try to figure them out. For years, I didn’t even know how to turn our main house computer.

My husband wanted to teach me a few basics so I could use it during the day. He said you move the curser here and click on this, but he was really surprised when I said “Don’t you have to turn it on first? I don’t know how.”

kritiper's avatar

I’m smarter. (Because I don’t have one!)

ibstubro's avatar

Very eloquent @SecondHandStoke. I’m sort of in the car market and I give Honda a closer look.

To the question: I don’t have, or desire to have, a smartphone. I tend to shy away from any product that requires a monthly subscription fee. My phone is an exception, and it does the same thing as a land line…place and receive calls. Paying the internet is a constant source of annoyance because my service is relatively poor and expensive due to a rural address.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro If where you live is anything like where I used to live, you probably don’t have the cellphone infrastructure to handle smartphones anyways. Where I was, even regular cell service was spotty at best.

I think the big issue is how intuitive you find them. I know that my experience with the iPod Touch turned me off to iOS entirely because half the things I wanted to do were locked out and most of the rest were done in a manner I found somewhere between non-intuitive and ass backwards. Android, on the other hand, seemed straightforward to me. This isn’t an Apple vs Android thing; merely an example of how technology that doesn’t mesh with the way your mind works is effectively useless.

For some, it’s a lack of vision; they have a genie in a lamp but don’t know what to wish for, so they don’t explore/exploit theppossibilities. For others it’s a lack of perspective; they see technology as a dark art, unlike anything else they’ve experienced. How is looking up a phone number in a phonebook or finding a book in a card catalog really all that different from using Google? I see them as nearly identical, but many don’t see it that way.

hearkat's avatar

My technology is a tool and a resource that I control to access data. It is an information conduit. While it is true that I can not do mathematical calculations as quickly as my technology, that does not mean the technology is smarter than I am. I am the one who processes the information and applies it in my life. I am definitely wiser than my devices.

jonsblond's avatar

@jerv For some, it’s a lack of vision; they have a genie in a lamp but don’t know what to wish for, so they don’t explore/exploit the possibilities.For others it’s a lack of perspective; they see technology as a dark art, unlike anything else they’ve experienced.

You come across as condescending. (I thought you should know.) A person who doesn’t have a smartphone lacks vision and perspective? I have no need for a smartphone because I have a laptop at home for all my internet needs. I don’t need the internet glued to my hip. Why should I pay that extra expense? It would be stupid for me to do so.

jerv's avatar

@jonsblond If your laptop gives you all the internet you need/want, more power to you. I was referring more to the people who get a smartphone and then are like, “Now what?”.

tom_g's avatar

@jerv: “Most people have technophobia which shuts off their brain whenever technology enters the picture. They may be otherwise intelligent, but they have a mental block against computers and such that effectively reduces their IQ by at least half.”

@jerv is correct here. What he is describing is real fear in people. I mean, true, honest heart-racing sh*t. I am exposed to this all the time because I “work with computers”, which means that when people want to accomplish something with their computer/tablet/phone, they hyperventilate and ask me what to do. Note: this goes way beyond a simple disinterest in technology. It’s paralyzing fear that will stop an otherwise intelligent person’s fingers from even typing in a simple Google search.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

@jerv:

To answer “Now what?”

Part of the beauty of (smartphones) is that they are upgradable, and if one is so inclined modifiable through jailbreaking, or in your case rooting. (There is one known case of Android running on an iPhone but it’s not exactly dependable).

So many products come with a depressing reality: New is as good as it’s going to get, from then on it’s just going to wear out.

Not so with computers and smartphones. As new technologies rise and new applications are found the device becomes more than it was when you carried it out of the store.

My car is more that it was when I bought it through modification. It now has a lower center of mass, quicker turn in response, better acceleration and braking, less body roll, improved roadholding, more direct and tactile steering and shifting and a greater thrust to mass ratio. It’s better due to tweaking I did myself. This makes for a feeling of great satisfaction.

The moment I conceded that trying to keep a car in Manhattan was impractical I put my car in storage and then turned to my iPhone. I had to be fiddling with something. I did my first jailbreak. The result felt exactly the same. Just like the car the device was now truly mine.

That’s what.

@tom_g:

Using computers can be infuriating. I’ve used both Windows and Macintosh systems.

The “paralyzing fear” is a direct result of Microsoft’s making an art of embracing the status quo.

When I sold cars the computers were exclusively Window’s driven. Dealing with it’s almost hateful lack of respect for the user was one thing when I was putzing around on the Internet at home, quite another when real productivity was needed and real income was on the line.

Why Windows? Well because every other grim cubicle filled office is using it too. This is Window’s pathetic and only reason for success. It was infuriating trying to get real work done on a machine that didn’t take how humans function into account. Every operation, every day it felt like trying to reach around my elbow to get to my ass.

Some car sales software is still DOS. Acura prides itself in making an innovative, intuitive product with top of class ergonomics. Why the fuck isn’t this reflected in the computers we use??!!

No wonder so many are put off or terrified by computer technology.

tom_g's avatar

@SecondHandStoke: “The “paralyzing fear” is a direct result of Microsoft’s making an art of embracing the status quo.”

I’m specifically talking about people and their iPhones and Macbooks as well as all technology. Please don’t turn this into a platform for your Apple speech.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

@ibstubro:

Honda/Acura is the only Japanese automaker founded by an individual.

Soichiro Honda was a race driver sidelined by injury. This can be felt in the liveliness in all of their products, no matter how basic the model.

All the other Asain manufacturers started as huge faceless corporations (Subaru? Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd., Toyota was a manufacturer of weaving equipment and sewing machines., Hyundai? Asia’s largest producer of steel and container ships).

Honda Motor Company was founded for Mr. Honda’s passion, not subsidized by the state in order to rise from the ashes of WWII.

In fact the Japanese government did what they could to hinder Honda’s progress. The government felt that Japan already had as many car manufacturers as it needed.

The result is a driver oriented spark that the other manufacturers mostly lack. Honda’s products are essentially as reliable as those from Toyota and Subaru but possess that verve throughout it’s entire range.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

^Mr. Honda’s favorite drive to work was his Triumph 250.

Eventually he was worn down and convinced to be delivered via company limo.

ibstubro's avatar

Okay, okay, @SecondHandStoke. I shall seek a Honda. I’m very much unimpressed with my Toyota.

I think @jerv it a techy geek giving great answers that are so focused on one aspect of the question that the answers seem insensitive or condescending.

LOL @kritiper for “I’m smarter. (Because I don’t have one!)” Agreed.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

^Sorry, didn’t mean to browbeat you.

Just the salesperson in me.

Or perhaps I just love the sound of my own typing.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

@tom_g:

I can only, like everyone else, speak from my own experience and observation.

I’ve experienced my “paralyzing fear”, why wouldn’t I know it’s cause?

ibstubro's avatar

^ There is little I hate more than car buying. Anything that narrows the field helps.

Find me the 13 month old Honda equivalent of a Sport Track and it’s sold.
Leather

I hate the sound of my own typing. It always sounds so much richer if I record it.

tom_g's avatar

@SecondHandStoke: “I can only, like everyone else, speak from my own experience and observation.”
“I’ve experienced my “paralyzing fear”, why wouldn’t I know it’s cause?”

Fair enough. As long as it’s your fear that we’re talking about. What I was describing – and trying to explain that I think @jerv is actually onto something, as offensive as it may seem to some people, is that technophobia isn’t just a description of not being interested in technology. And it’s important to point out that it is not brand specific or even limited to smartphones and computers.

For example, while I find iOS to be very non-intuitive, I am able to accomplish what I need because it doesn’t scare me. I work through a process of experimentation and research. There are people that will simply be so afraid (my aunt, for example) that they will simply not use the alarm clock feature on their iPad, for example, because it would take 3 minutes of a relaxed, open attitude to figure it out.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

@ibstubro:

Honda has only one option (in the US market) as a equivalent to the Sport Track.

The Honda Ridgeline pickup.

It has a modern unit body and lockable underbed trunk. Car like handling and luxury.

Dual zone aircon.

Tailgate can lift or swing.

Towing package available.

http://automobiles.honda.com/ridgeline/

ibstubro's avatar

Damned shame it’s fugly, @SecondHandStoke. Sorry.

Explorer, or smaller, then.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

^I assumed you were in need of a pickup bed because Sport Track.

rojo's avatar

@ibstubro FWIW I I’m not overly impressed with the quality of my wants Honda Fit. nothing major its just the detail work is, in my opinion, sub par when compared to a Corolla or even a Ford Focus.

ibstubro's avatar

I like the Sport Track concept, @SecondHandStoke, which is basically a mid-sized SUV with an open bed for hauling wet/dirty/tall items. The Ridgeline is only out-fuglied in it’s class by the Avalanche. Well, maybe equaled. A bright yellow 13 month old low mileage Sport Track is my ideal. Otherwise, maybe a small dual cab, short bed, flair sided pickup.

Well then don’t have a Fit, @rojo, Focus on a Corolla! :) I should buy a Ford since I own stock (bought at the bottom of the market.) Thanks.

ibstubro's avatar

I’m fickle sometimes. You know why I didn’t buy a focus when I bought my Camry? I didn’t like the way they stitched the seats in bold white thread. lol

jerv's avatar

I lost my love for Honda when they stopped selling the 3-door hatchback stateside, and axed the NSX. And I think the CR-Z is a piss-poor replacement for the CRX; it’s just a non-hybrid Prius. Bring back the del Sol!

@SecondHandStoke Windows has improved greatly over the years. I loathed every version before XP, but they seemed to get it it pretty well done with Win7 before taking a huge dump on all that progress with Win8. Still, from a UI point of view, I find little difference between OS X and Win7… unless I try to get something productive done… or I get on a laptop where I have to learn a new finger-based martial art because the trackpad on Macbooks requires gang signs instead of the mouse + bucky-bit tha I am used to.

As for the phones, I have not really had any desire to root my Razr. Every feature I want on my phone that would require jailbreaking iOS is open under Android. Therefore, no need. What I find funny is that, for all the claims of intuitiveness, my non-computer-literate wife figured out Android quickly, but iOS is still beyond her. Apparently I’m not the only one that finds Apple’s attempts to simplify things to be obfuscatory instead. Apple may be decent about marketing (not developing; merely copying/buying the work of others, and putting a coat of paint on it) a way to bring computers to those who think nothing like computers, but for those of us whose who are a bit more mechanical in our thinking… well, lets just say Apple is not a “one-size-fits-all” solution.

Oddly enough, the best things they did were to ditch their proprietary code base for Free BSD (Look under the hood of OS X ;) ) in order to become UNIX-complaint, buying Siri Inc, and copying Xerox 30 years ago. Well, making their own version of the Tablet PC that was rolled out 10–15 years ago was also good, as was copying Samsung designs from 2005 and earlier. Apple has great marketing, but they’re hardly the greatest innovators in the industry.

jonsblond's avatar

I think @jerv it a techy geek giving great answers that are so focused on one aspect of the question that the answers seem insensitive or condescending.—I’m reading your answers again @jerv and I have to agree with @ibstubro. I hope you will accept my apology.

jerv's avatar

@jonsblond No apologies necessary. I know I’m overly blunt at times, but I’d rather be honest than disingenuous. To me, sugar-coating things feels almost like lying, and I’m a terrible liar.

Smitha's avatar

Memory wise it’s smarter than me!

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