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A shock study of iPhone users has found that they spend 46.9 per cent of their time thinking about something other than what they're doing - and this febrile absentmindedness makes them deeply unhappy. "A wandering mind is an unhappy mind," say trick-cyclists Matthew Killingsworth and Daniel Gilbert of Harvard uni. "The ability …

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Silver badge

Sounds like a good interview question

> they spend 46.9 per cent of their time thinking about something other than what they're doing

Thank you for coming in, before the interview starts properly, one little question: have you got an iPhone?

"Why yes I have" says the interviewee, proudly. "Would you like to see it?"

No thanks comes the curt reply <ding> "Next please".

(of course we don't know what percentage their time of non iPhone owners spend dreaming and gazing into space - it could be even more than this, especially if they were wishing they had an iPhone, too.)

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Happy

And on the flip side...

I turned down a job at a small division of a larger company earlier this year. The fact that the staff were mostly fanbois and took unnerving delight in brandishing their iPhones, iPods and especially iPads was not the only factor in my decision, but neither was it an insignificant one.

The staff rather fitted the fanboi stereotype and the common accusation of "style-over-substance" made about Apple products seemed to fit these people more than their devices. I didn't feel comfortable about them or their office.

The company recently decided to fold that division and everyone who wouldn't move to the parent company was laid off. Turns out the products they built weren't up to much, and they'd wasted what money they had earned. Another notch in the bedpost of my ability to judge character.

It's not that Apple products caused this; just that they attract people of a certain mindset. Mind you, I haven't got much of an attention span either. Oh, the irony.

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Stop

Sorry AC

I fell into an ennui-induced coma at your first use of the word "fanboi" (although I use the term "Word" loosely"). Come back when you have had an originality implant.

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Anonymous Coward

@ Eponymous Howard

Ennui-induced coma? You mean you "died of boredom"? Really, with "travails" and "tranche" and abuse of the word "genre", what is it with all this pseudo-French (it means "listlessness" and "boredom" in English, but the origin of the word is "vexed" and "angry" in French)? Do you think it somehow makes you seem smarter?

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Thumb Up

Nice One!

iAnything users are sad and mentally unfocused

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Headmaster

"fondle-slabbers"

Don't you mean "slab fondlers"?

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Anonymous Coward

fondle-slab

or "fondle-slab" users.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: fondle-slab

Apple isn't the only one making fondle slabs. Or are we saying it's the only one actually selling any?

Actually, judging by the Galaxy Tab on the desk here, I suspect it soon will be. Not impressed, I have to say.

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So what the study found is ....

"A shock study of iPhone users has found that they spend 46.9 per cent of their time thinking about something other than what they're doing ..."

So basically iPhone users have boring jobs and think of doing other things or being somewhere else. Enuff said really!

And this is coming from an Android user! FFS, these studies are pathetic!

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WTF?

Title is a title

Quality Trolling for a friday afternoon Reg.

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Anonymous Coward

making love

they weren't focused on the job if they were answering the survey at the same time... unless they were making love to their iphone?

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Troll

Or conversely,

I would start worrying about my methodology, getting answers like "I'm making love! LOLZ!" or "Splitting atoms! Someone must clean up leftovers! =(!" etc. Some legpulling may have occured.

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True

I think if someone phoned me up, to ask me my mood, while I was in the middle of making love, 'Doleful' would not be a very likely response.

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@Daniel

Given that I can't imagine that your partner would be particularly happy if you answered the phone in the middle of lovemaking, I think you would be doleful once you realised how long it would be until you next got the chance.

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Just goes to show..

Just goes to show what a really sad bunch these fanbois are! Unable to keep focused on the job when their iPhone demands attention...

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Joke

"...your partner would be particularly happy..."

What partner ??!!

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Anonymous Coward

The one occasion where that happened...

...my girlfriend picked up the phone to tell whoever it was to sod off, only to be told about a car accident in Paris.

Yes, *that* car accident in Paris.

Which is why we always looked sheepish when anyone trolled out the old "Do you remember where you were when you heard..."

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Joke

Car Accident?

I had a car accident in Paris several years ago, but I'm not sure I would have called your girlfriend about it. But who knows, maybe it was your girlfriend.

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Crumbs

Our fender bender and they had the courtesy to ring you - French hospitality.....

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Thumb Down

Down with this kind of thing.

Don't encourage them: don't report it.

That is all.

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WTF?

Complete tosh

This study is one of the most ludicrous examples of pseudo-science I've seen in a while. It seems American unis are going the same way as the rest of the country...

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Boffin

These traditions suggest ?

Really ? That's the evidence for it making you sad ? Seriously ?

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Silver badge

Not a good study

What percentage of non judas phone users are sad and mentally unfocused? It could actually be higher.

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Letter and/or numbers

That was my thought, too.

The use of the word "iPhone" in this study is irrelevant, since they haven't declared the numbers for the same study of non-iPhone owners.

I'm assuming this is iPhone-centric because they only developed the app for iPhones? In which case, iPhone ownership was just a factor in choosing the study sample.

Usual quasi-scientific "research".

(not an iPhone owner)

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Thumb Down

Worse study than you think

It says that iPhone users spend 46.9% of their time thinking about something other than what they're doing. The only reason iPhone users come into it, is because the researcher used an iPhone app to conduct the research - nothing more. To be honest though, I'm amazed it's not higher.

"A wandering mind is an unhappy mind," say trick-cyclists Matthew Killingsworth and Daniel Gilbert of Harvard uni. "The ability to think about what is not happening is a cognitive achievement that comes at an emotional cost."

Utter utter bollox. Your brain is constantly trying to adapt patterns to reduce to unconscious cognitive functions, like walking or driving a car. If we always had to consciously think about the task in hand, we'd never get anything done - for example, I'd never be able to type this quickly if I were thinking about typing.

At what point are you "doing" something? I'm breathing, but not thinking about it. Regulating body temperature. Typing. Reading. Listening/processing my environment.

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Anonymous Coward

so wait

a program designed to interrupt people at random found that they were not thinking about whatever it is they were doing before they were interrupted?

colour me shocked.

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Paris Hilton

Sponsored by

Dr Kawashima's Brain Training!

Paris: her mind was used as control subject

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Not really an unbiased study

I suspect users of Crackberry's could be tarred with the same brush, of even people who are using their PC's to read the register.

To be meaningful you would actually have to do a multi-channel, mutli-device survey.

Where's the waste paper basket icon when you need it.

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WTF?

WTF?

Even I don't like iCrap, this "study" is worthless. So what they were thinking then, did they ask? It is perfectly fine to multi-task.

And did iPhone users make love to their phone or think about someone/something else when they make love, or they think about making love all the time?

Regardless which one is true, it only says iPhone users cannot get real sex or attractive partner.

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Troll

So let me get this right...

"The only activity which caused doleful absentmindedness to drop below 30 per cent among slab-fondlers was "making love"."

Hold on love, My iPhone is asking me a question, keep yourself busy for a minute...

But then maybe it doesn't take a great deal to keep Lady Palm in the mood?

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: So let me get this right...

"Lady Palm"

is that a reference to Pré cum?

Sorry...

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Lady Palm

That will be Mrs Palm and her 5 daughters, or Rosie, to her friends.

Which explains why Mrs Palm runs the Guild of Seamstresses in Ankh-Morpork

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WTF?

Rubbish

Sorry what were you saying?. I was thinking about something else...

------------------------

Sent from iPhone

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Title

Where's the evidence that this is limited to fondle-phone users?

And where's the cure for cancer? I mean, they must have finished that or they wouldn't be wasting their time on this, surely?

And...erm...erm.

Sorry, I wandered off for a minute.

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Anonymous Coward

Well

People say I'm easily distracted but I just tell them to F...... oooooh that phone is shiny !

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Reg reporting

I weep for the quality of articles on The Reg lately.

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Happy

n0nsnce"

trying uh! to uuuh! txt" uuuuuuuuh! reeeeeeeeeeepppppppppppllllllllyyyyyyyyyyy aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!"

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WTF?

Excellent piece of research

Of course people will answer a random survey if their mind is wandering and they've got nothing better to do.

If they're really busy and focused on getting something done, most likely they'll hit the "ignore survey" button.

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Anonymous Coward

probably...

Thinking about all that sex they are having, according to that other survey....

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Paris Hilton

What % of those are women?

Women multitask so you'd expect all female owners to be thinking of more than just the task in hand. There's nothing new here.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: What % of those are women?

All women? I'm terrible at multi-tasking. But I am very nurturing and also er, what else is it that all women are? Don't answer that.

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Silver badge

Erm, no

Turns out that women don't multi-task after all, no-one does.

We all use the same system of time slicing but a lot of it depends on how many tasks can be kept ticking over.

I can manage to watch the telly, drink beer and scratch my arse all at the same time - is that multi-tasking?

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Flame

multi-tasking

isn't necessarily a desirable skill, this always seems to be overlooked whenever anyone touts this particular hogwash.

At work there are people who can work, write emails, browse the net, talk on the phone, chat with their friends, etc. All at the same time... I just work! Guess who has more work done at the end of the day!

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Anonymous Coward

what else is it that all women are

Lovely. You're all lovely. Lovely, lovely ladies.

Rowr.

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Joke

@ Sarah Bee

"All women? I'm terrible at multi-tasking. But I am very nurturing and also er, what else is it that all women are?"

Horders. Horders of extraneous cushions, that's what. The sofa came with no extra cushioning, therefore it doesn't NEED any more cushioning. So why all the additional cushions??? Why? Why? They just get in the way!!! ;p

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WTF?

This just in!

In a shocking survey, researchers discovered that people in general aren't focused. Furthermore, they also noted that people aren't happy, except when they're wanking.

This is every bit as pseudo-science as the nonsense being spewed about global warming or Bigfoot, only neither of those have an app (or do they?).

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Rule 34 for apps...

If there aren't currently any I'm sure that there will be soon.

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Megaphone

Title

Actually, judging by the Galaxy Tab on the desk here, I suspect it soon will be. Not impressed, I have to say.<

Awaiting for aforementioned review, as well as the Pcworld Advent and the archos 101. I'm still waiting for the iPad beater - screen and build quality and battery life.

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Silver badge
FAIL

Curiouser & curiouser...

My nephew loves his iPhone. He's a Windows network administrator.

I'm still perfectly happy with my Samsung Pixon M8800. I'm a graphic designer and a Mac techie - even a fanboy.

Neither of us are sad or unfocused, mentally or otherwise.

This is nothing more than a "quiet day page-filler".

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The Distracted Mind

In defense of the wandering mind, a lot of my best solutions have come to mind while on a walk or in the shower. Doing something rote and physical when the mind may wander (which is perhaps happening all the time, but at a level below consciousness) is the ideal situation for the good idea to trickle up into recognition.

I've also spent significant chunks of my life as a bureaucrat and an ersatz rock star. Yes, absolutely, when buried deep in reconciling someone's credit card expense report, those thoughts about playing guitar have been an indicator that at that moment I wanted to be doing something else.

When the work's done, I go and do something else fun.

As I think about it, there's been a time or two when I've been playing music and thought about something at the day job. I guess the point is that disengagement from the moment happens and it only means that all our concentration is not needed.

Now the occasional moment of disengagement is a first step to being totally disengaged, which is known as alienation and unhappiness, as the occasional adult beverage is necessary to alcoholism. Well, yes, but there's a fairly large gap between those states that most people will not traverse.

So.

Oh Yeah.

I use an iPhone.

And I think.......

I'm thinking about playing Angry Birds.

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