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Falling in Love With Your Phone

Fri, 01/10/2014 - 10:13am
Meaghan Ziemba, Editor

During a recent movie night with the future hubby, we saw a preview for the upcoming movie, “Her”, a film in which the male protagonist falls in love with his phone’s artificial intelligence system, “Samantha” – rumor has it, she’s more advanced than Siri. According to Siri, “[Samantha] gives artificial intelligence a bad name.”

While there was no physical representation of the computer’s operating system, the preview depicted Samantha as a warm, responsive voice (Scarlett Johansson) whose personality seemed to be accustomed to the Protagonist’s (Joaquin Phoenix) wants, needs, and desires – a concept that truly vexed me, but nonetheless fits into our current societal culture. Either way, I want to go see it.

Nowadays, users are consumed by technology. It’s on our clothes, in our cars, and making appearances in our home appliances, so maybe it is possible for some of us to develop deeper emotional attachments with certain technological advances – show me a gamer who hasn’t fantasized about avatars – even those who acted out those fantasies in one way or another.

According to CNN, the film “has raised questions about vocal attraction, the power of sound, and our desire to truly connect in a hyper-connected yet physically removed world,” presenting a scenario that “isn't too far off base in the realm of digital dating.”

I have a love/hate relationship with my phone (depending on the day), but I’m not batting my eyes at it or expecting a proposal anytime soon (I have a ring from a human). Call me old fashioned, but I like face-to face interactions, and I am wondering if this movie will give the socially inept a sense of false hope.

Technology is a double-edged sword – it connects us, but at the same time, it disconnects us. We’ve become so engulfed with Facebook, Twitter [@wirelessdesign], Candy Crush (pick your poison), that we’ve forgotten how to be comfortable in real-life settings and relationships. Although technology makes certain aspects of life easier, it has an unforeseen consequence, where face-to-face communication becomes a difficult task.

All relationships have their complications. The anxiety that comes with facing those complications, has provided an opportunity for technology to make those who are socially inept more confined. With the inability to handle real relationships, we risk idea generation and the opportunity to progress as a society. Collective brainstorming and face-to-face interactions have always been major components of ideation, and technology should not be used as a replacement for human interaction. And no one wants to see people making out with their phones, already to many odd “selfies” out there.

Do you have a special connection with your phone? Tell us about it in the comment section below, or send your comments to meaghan.ziemba@advantagemedia.com.

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