I wake up, I grab my iPhone and instantly I know I'm alive.
I disappear into terrible news, disturbing pictures, and, especially, short videos of people doing something truly ridiculous.
Then, I'm ready for my day, a day that involves hours of staring at screens. A lot of staring at screens.
I write while staring at a screen that displays my words, while also staring at another screen that's showing a vitally important sporting event from somewhere in the world. (The effect is evident, of course.)
Somehow, I've come to edit out information about how long people are attached to their gadgets every day.
The answer is usually "a lot."
Still, a new study descended onto my screen, while I was watching the decisive Game 6 of the Korean Series. (The NC Dinos, owned by gaming company NCSoft, won the whole thing, bringing shame to LG and Samsung. Thank you for asking.)
This study was dramatized with a startling revelation: "Americans Spend 95% Of Their Waking Hours Stuck To Their Devices."
Of course NordVPN wants you to consider just how tied you are to your gadgets. It wants you to ponder whether a VPN is the more secure transmission method for your every online need. It's especially interested in attracting women, as they're apparently slightly less tied to their gadgets than are men.
I find all that a touch prosaic. Instead, I see in these precious 59 minutes the next great opportunity for the tech world.
Dear founders and your sugar daddy VCs. This is perhaps your greatest challenge. There are 59 minutes left to exploit. In these minutes may lie your next (or, perhaps, first) grotesque goldmine. Soon, your seminal tome: The 59 Steps I Took To Become A Billionaire.
Do your research -- or pay someone else to do it. Find out what causes human beings to disappear from the almighty grid for 59 minutes every day. Map those minutes.
What are people doing? Why do they believe technology cannot help them in these clearly precious moments? Why are they feeling the need to turn away from the all-world system that has already shown its power over every thought, feeling, and action?
Once you have the answers, work out how to monetize these last 59 minutes. Yes, you'll likely have to suck in their attention first with a ruse that gives them instantaneous pleasure.
Ultimately, though, imagine the money to be made. Your startup could be the first to be the technological alternative to the screen.