Traffic lights in the ground help teenagers avoid traffic

Traffic lights in the ground help teenagers avoid traffic

In Germany they call them “smombies” – or smartphone zombies – people who are so caught up in their device they roam the streets oblivious to other people, traffic or rogue lamp posts.

Now this particular breed of tech junkie has been given special traffic lights — installed into the pavements — to help them avoid oncoming traffic.

Officials in Augsburg in the Bavaria region have built lights into the pavement at two tram stops in the city, The Local reports, which flash red when a tram is approaching or the normal lights turn red.

They’re designed to catch the eye of anyone craning their neck to get through that last Candy Crush level before they board and alert them when a relatively quiet trains approaching.

 

Tobias Harms from the city’s council told reporters:

“We realised that the normal traffic light isn’t in the line of sight of many pedestrians these days.  So we decided to have an additional set of lights — the more we have, the more people are likely to notice them.”

Several pedestrians are said to have been hit by the trains while looking at their phones recently, and a 15-year-old was reportedly hit and killed after being distracted by her device in Munich in March.

Toddler Buys Car While Playing with Dad’s Phone

Austin Healey Sprite

Don’t give your smartphone to anyone that you don’t trust with your money. Paul Stoute of Portland, Oregon found that out when his 2-year old daughter Sorella used the eBay app on his phone to purchase a 1962 Austin Healey Sprite:

“She decided to open the eBay app, and started clicking around and one thing led to another and we own a car,” he told KOIN 6 News, laughing.

Mom and Dad had an “initial panic,” he said. “‘What do we do? We can’t really afford it’ kind of thing.”

But they decided to keep it.

Paul plans to keep the car, restore it, and give it to Sorella for her 16th birthday or high school graduation, read here for more.

Compare & Contrast: St. Peter’s Square in 2005 and 2013

It’s amazing to see how much technology changes even in a few years, check of the 8 year difference in the two papal announcements.  This Instragram photo shared by the Today Show highlights the contrast of St. Peter’s Square surrounding the new Pope.

It is amazing:

TodayShow-Instagram-St-Peters-Square

The change from one person in the crowd with a camera phone, to a sea of people with smartphones and tablets.  What I find interesting, is that everyone is taking a picture of the same thing.  Why would we need so many pictures of the same thing – so many of which will be poor quality shots?  I think it says something about our desire to capture our own experiences.

The Never-Ending Smartphone Checking Cycle

We’ve all been there — you take out your smartphone to make a call and 10 minutes later, after checking your email, Twitter and Instagram, you forget why you took it out in the first place.

This comic by H. Caldwell Tanner of Loldwell shows that we’re all guilty of it. Can you break the cycle? Let me know in the comments.

Smartphone cycle