A guy over at Wi-Fi Planet by the name of Mike Flynn put forth an interesting idea, one that’s almost as terrifying as it is plausible, and is possibly terrifying because it’s plausible, is the idea that the iPhone is actually a kind of disease.
Flynn believes that it has one primary symptom, to spread virulently through your life and force you to filter all your experiences in life through it. The sheer number of applications, Flynn posits, allow you to do just about everything with your iPhone. For instance, Flynn planned to take his wife to a movie. His first thought was to check his Moviefone app, which he did, and the results it gave altered his plans. An iPhone app changes his reading habits from magazines to books, since the iPhone doesn’t allow for magazine reading. An iPhone app changed his music listening habits, his workout habits, and plenty else.
Flynn traces back the common cause of all this to one key point–the iPhone. Without its many apps and sheer ubiquity, he wouldn’t have these problems, he claims, especially since he’s used Blackberries and similar devices without trouble, nor does he recall other people having these same issues with any other device.
So is the iPhone a kind of parasite? The idea’s worthy of a horror movie, but whether or not it’s true likely depends on the user. I personally wonder if he’s describing not so much a disease as an addiction (which are admittedly very close in nature, though addiction really isn’t caused by bacteria or viruses but rather at the genetic level), but that’s a fairly fine point on its own. These things are here to stay, so we’re going to have to learn to live with them.