Will "the Mighty" Strohl

30 Days Without a Cell Phone

Will Strohl & Chris Hammond tweeting on our phones at Day of DotNetNuke Tampa 2009

Many of you probably already know who Matt Cutts is.  If you’re unaware, he’s one of the first engineers hired at Google.  He is now responsible for their Webspam team, but he is also behind tools like safe search.  Anyhow, he has a very well-populated blog.  He blogs much more than I do.  One of his reoccurring blog themes is the concept of trying something out for 30 days and letting his readers know how it worked out. I guess it’s my turn…

A while back, I woke up to find my an arm on my HTC G2 phone broken. It appeared like it simply popped out of socket, but it had actually broke.  Since I didn’t break it myself, I thought it would be easy to get replaced. Nope.  As it turns out, no matter the reason, some parts of a phone are considered “physical damage” regardless to how the damage occurred.  In this case, “physical damage” means that you personally broke the phone, intentionally or not.

I wasn’t willing to pay for damage I didn’t cause, so I just dealt with it – which wasn’t a big deal since I rarely opened my phone to begin with.  Swipe on Android is much easier than using an actual keyboard.

T-Mobile G2 HTC Swivel Arm

Well, just over a month ago now, my screen went out.  The touch behavior still functioned, but the picture no longer displayed.  Upon battling with T-Mobile and their insurance agency, I would need to basically pay for half the value of the phone to get it replaced.  Well, I am stubborn.  I said, “to heck with that!”  I decided to instead suspend my phone for a while to stick it to the man!  Hehehe…

Now, I know that my little stunt will mean little to nothing to T-Mobile or any other carrier, but it made ME feel better.  So, I decided to go without my phone.  At the time I didn’t have any aspirations to go a full 30 days, but in the end, that’s exactly what it was.  As it turns out, this was a very interesting test.

At first, this experiment was easy.  It was my choice, and I had no idea how long it would be – but this ease of no phone would soon become more difficult.

I am very connected to my phone.  I used it for videos, pictures, social networking, texting, GPS, listening to music, keeping up with work, and much more.  Soon I was finding that I need to do things like print directions to before before traveled destinations, stick near my kids so their mother could call me, and wait until I was at a computer to be able to do nearly anything. 

It wouldn’t be long before I would have friends and family begin calling and texting Kim so that they could get ahold of me.  I even had to borrow my son’s phone when I traveled for business recently.  Needless to say, I don’t think I really made it a full 30 days.  At least, it doesn’t completely count.

One of the hardest parts of the entire process was not being able to break DotNetNuke news or share cool or funny things with the rest of the DNN community. 

Well, I finally received my replacement phone today, and after about an hour of configuration, I am completely tied back to the interwebs with the rest of you again!  Hahaha!

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