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  Social Electronics

Discusses social media platforms such as Facebook, Mobile Phones, the Internet and Messaging utilities and their role in our lives. We look at the role of information technology and its impact on our behaviour and consider technological gaps.

Erasmus Erasmus : Social media is a large part of modern existence. Facebook, Instagram, mobile phones, the Internet and messaging utilities feature prominently in many people’s lives.

These media carry their own problems though since they have grown beyond their initial purpose. Facebook was initially set up as a way to keep track of potential “partners” – to know when someone you would like to know more – has fallen out of a relationship and become available. It has grown into a platform that people use to tell others about every aspect of their lives.

A Friend’s wife was becoming quite envious of her sister and her Facebook feeds. They were always going out and. Doing things. Her husband said – well we did these two things this weekend and those two things that weekend. We have actually done as much as they have. We just haven’t boasted about it or posted about it anywhere near as much.

The envy aspect is hurtful for many people. It is all too easy to think that everyone is having a much better life than you are. The quality of your life is not something that really can be judged by others though. It really comes down to – how happy and satisfied are you are with yourself and your life.

Facebook Envy
Facebook Envy

And personality is a big factor in that judgement. Some people such as enneagram eights – need to be the biggest and the best. Socials need to have people exposure in their lives. And it is these big activities and the people within lives that too many of us measure our achievements by. There are people such as self pres enneagram personality types, for who these achievements may be quite unimportant.

Dr Xxxxx Dr Xxxxx : A friend of mine died. At the funeral they told everyone about all the things he was doing with his life, where he had been, and what he was involved with. I said – that’s great!

Unfortunately, my life has none of these things happening. My life is ordinary and quiet. I do a lot of reading, and watch TV and spend some time writing and on a few special projects. But I am very happy with the things that I am doing. I am very sure that none of my friends would value any of the things that I do – but I do myself. Perhaps no one else would want a life like mine but it is what I value and hold important, and what I have chosen. I’m happy with that.

Kinkajou Kinkajou : More tech!
The mobile phone has overtaken the landline as the main portal for most people’s communication. But everyone seems to have overlooked that landlines have really fallen behind the technology curve compared to mobiles.

There is no reason why landline phone should not be offering more and better services and through a larger screen than does a mobile. In Australia, with the national broadband network set up (NBN), most phones are now becoming Internet phones. So, there is not a lot of reason why the services they offer should not be compatible to services offered through mobile phones.

Old Phone Out of Date: We  Can Do Better.
Old Phone Out of Date: We Can Do Better.

Erasmus Erasmus : There is one reason the landline phone is so primitive.
Kinkajou Kinkajou : What’s that?
Erasmus Erasmus : The financial business model. People pay for home phones whereas almost no one pays for many Internet services or the home landline.. The development of mobile phone apps and mobile phone services has been driven by money. In the situation is not likely to improve because there is not a lot of financial reward to be had in offering landline telephone services.
Kinkajou Kinkajou : I can see that. There are two basic problems. Firstly, you need a software model to deliver a range of actual services. Second, the hardware associated with landline phones is inadequate and needs to be totally upgraded and redesigned to enable the delivery of a better range of services.

Goo the Numbat Goo : I’m sure someone will wake up one day and realise there is money to be made. There are plenty of big companies able to handle the cost of innovation at the front end.

Kinkajou Kinkajou : Big companies don’t take risks. It is much less risky to improve an existing service than it is to create a totally new and different service model.
Goo the Numbat Goo : Sad really. But nothing stays the same. One day someone will wake up and see an opportunity and it will be game on.

Erasmus Erasmus : The sad thing is that it is often the second newcomer to the market who takes the crown. The innovator describes a concept and works to create a chink in the market. But it is usually the followers who exploit the chink through clever development of suitable applications and services. Or at least that has been the history of many innovative developments in the computer and communications era.




Phone Call


Only at home







Media and other Files Types






Conference Call



Conferences e.g., Zoom



Watch/ Time Keeping



Alarms, Reminders



Sharing Apps: Facebook or Instagram



Choice of Apps






Sensors / GPS



Sprites/ Agents



Memory /Archives



Intelligent Assistant



Monitoring e.g., security sensors










It almost makes you want to cry looking at this list. The hardware technology and the software are all possible and available. It just needs for someone to consider the business model.

I think the key thing that may drive innovation, is just simply a bigger screen than is available with the average phone. A tablet sized screen or a notebook type screen or configuration just asks to be the new phone interface – with a few tweaks.

In looking at the above table you can start seeing why people use mobile phones and preferences to landlines. There is no reason why landline technology over the Internet should not have all the features in the table above – and more.

Screen sizes have begun to default to as large as possible, but there is a limit to what can be done for a mobile device. A landline device can bypass this restriction. The handset could easily be just a tablet which links to a base station and CPU. (This type of model would allow maximisation of the main processing chip specifications at the base station. Handset to base station bandwidth would likely be more than adequate to minimise delays). No reason your landline phone cannot work as a wireless device with an internet connection.

Goo the Numbat Goo : With a ping feature from the base station to find it is it is lost.

Erasmus Erasmus : Mobile phones are always going to be limited to some extent because of the need for size restraints and for miniaturisation of components.

Kinkajou Kinkajou : Back to talking about social economics, please.
Erasmus Erasmus : Personality is a big factor in people’s need for social media platforms. If you’re a social personality – you can spend a lot of time chasing your social group. But all too many people find that time demands of social media – almost put their real life on hold.

Kinkajou Kinkajou : Yes. One friend of mine set up his computer system to be able to play social online games. He bought the biggest best system with the best graphics cards and the top-of-the-line audio. He had had this set up for a couple of months. When I saw him next, I asked him how things were going. He said he had decided that gaming was turning him into a hermit. He was never going out and never seeing anyone. He had closed down his gaming set up – and went back to real life.

Dr Xxxxx Dr Xxxxx : He was lucky. Many Paill affected people are unable to think their way out of a rut. Goes with the brain damage.
Goo the Numbat Goo : The downside of being involved in social platforms.
* Jealous and happy ex-partners
* hostile people
* envy
* people who want to take advantage of you
* the fixated
* predatory friends and acquaintances
* fraud and theft

Erasmus Erasmus : Not everyone is a social and feels that they need what social media platforms have to offer.

For an enneagram self- pres personality, the social issue is why do I need that? Why would I bother?
For a social person, the social issue is why would I not do it?

Neither attitude is right or wrong. You get to choose yourself the life you wish to live. Don’t think you’re missing out. Choose to do what you enjoy doing. If you’re experiencing discomfort or envy from social media – I would suggest you stop. Many others have made this decision before.


Other issues with social platforms:
* Online marketing: remember the phone is always listening to you. I have had friends involved in “secret” negotiations. Their phone heard them talking about truck utility models during one of the secret negotiations, and began to present them advertisements for truck utility vehicles.
* The Internet with news and other interesting information is always available.
* Education can be accessed
* You can share friends and others and build up a distributed network rather than a local network of friends. This means that you are more likely to find similarly interested people with quirky interests like yours if you have a wider group to select from.
* Privacy issues

* Changes in lifestyle:
answering calls and always being available for messages and calls.
* Sleep disruption

* Emotions from people are harder to read, than if you see people in the flesh
* Reduces intimacy – if you’re out with friends and dealing with your phone, you are being intimate with your phone and spending time with your phone not your friends
* Up-to-date information – available by trolling newsfeeds

* Monitoring – you can monitor others but unfortunately others can also monitor you.
* Entertainment – a lot of people really enjoy U-tube and tick-tock feeds
* A good way to find a sugar daddy – I always wondered about this one on LinkedIn. I sometimes wonder why these people bother communicating with you. I decided that perhaps they wanted something – and that goes for both men and women.

Goo the Numbat Goo : Looking on the Internet:
The percentage of US adults using social media sites is as follows:
U-tube 73%
Facebook 65%
Instagram 35%
Pinterest 29%
Snapchat 27%
LinkedIn 25%
Twitter 24%

Twitter Twitter

Erasmus Erasmus : Instagram started as a photo sharing site will progress to adding stories to picture files. It also progressed to allow increased commercialisation and marketing through the site.

Twitter can be used to scout out what people are saying about you or your business. It can be used to follow your community for example at #yourhome

Kinkajou Kinkajou : Yes, I find that absolutely amazing. Someone I know lost their dog. They were able to follow the progress of the dog as people posted on social media where he was. They saw him at the shops down the road. Then they saw that he went across to the train station. Then they saw that someone at the train station had taken him to the office there. They were able to retrieve him from the office. It is amazing to think that there are that many social-minded people able to create the net and to make it function to retrieve a lost dog.

We cannot talk about social economics without mentioning the Internet. The Internet is an awesome source of information and expertise. Within several minutes the average man a woman can retrieve information that brings them up to expert grade. You know more than the experts and you know that what you know is right. And you know this because the Internet told you so. 

A friend needed to know some information about serology for filarial diseases, in particular the differences in the success of serological tests for Wucheria bancrofti as opposed to Brugia malayi. He rang the specialist the next day. He was able to see the limitations of what the specialist was telling him and that the information that the specialist gave him was only applicable in very specific circumstances. The Information was correct, but the situation was much more complex than could be conveyed by the specialist. The Internet had made him an instant expert.

Filaria : Internet Research makes you a Rapid Expert
Filaria : Internet Research makes you a Rapid Expert


Those traditional home arguments about who was in a particular movie or who did what and when, no longer need an encyclopaedia to resolve. Just use a search engine on the Internet.
The Internet allows you to have access to information 24 hours a day and seven days a week.

Probably the biggest impact of social media on the communication system is the impact on magazines and newspapers. Magazines and newspapers have not worked out a different business model to allow them to flourish in the technological communication era. They are hooked on selling physical product at high markups. The reality is the bulk of the cost of the magazine is its printing and distribution. If you’re able to bypass that, the average person can buy 10 magazines for the price of one. In the magazine company retains the same margin per unit items sold.

And let’s face it, think about it. If you’re willing to buy one magazine, wouldn’t you be happier having 10. You have the magazine you want, and you have a few extras you can glance over that may be relevant as well. We talk about this on our webpage at

Dr Xxxxx Dr Xxxxx : A number of the medical companies have changed from printing their journals to electronic journals. The concept is okay but to read the journal is almost impossible because the interface does not deal with a page of print terribly well. And then consider that most screens are landscape format whereas most journals are portrait format. Unless these idiots change, people just find that the interfaces provided cannot be used and it is easier not to bother looking at the journal at all.

Goo the Numbat Goo : Make the interface easy and they will come.