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October 14, 2011 9:54 AM   Subscribe

If you've ever had those moments where you try to hit undo for something that just happened in real life, or had the impulse to hit control+c to duplicate something on a piece of paper, you might enjoy watching this 1-year-old, for whom a magazine is an iPad that does not work.
posted by cashman (117 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite

 
If you've ever had those moments where you try to hit undo for something that just happened in real life

I thought I was the only one! I am not alone.
posted by punkfloyd at 9:56 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Is this like when I was 1 and tried to speak into the telegraph machine?
posted by spicynuts at 9:58 AM on October 14, 2011 [5 favorites]


Yeah, my nephews are the same way. Everything they have is electronic.
posted by empath at 9:58 AM on October 14, 2011


Just like Buster in Ctrl Z!

(Ctrl-F would be the one I always reach for when reading a book ... which is one reason I'm shifting digital.)
posted by mrgrimm at 9:59 AM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


A year or so ago I was visiting the Museum of Natural History in DC. I was in the dinosaur exhibit, and I was looking at a glass case with some saurian skeleton or other in it. The plaque on the display had the name of the dinosaur and some relevant information, and for whatever reason they chose to put two or three words in red in the middle of a sentence. My web designer brain took that to mean that it was a hyperlink and I almost touched it to get more information.
posted by starvingartist at 10:04 AM on October 14, 2011 [11 favorites]




If you've ever had those moments where you try to hit undo for something that just happened in real life

Updating to iOS5, which broke Stanza, which will never be fixed.
posted by Trurl at 10:11 AM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


First world awwww
posted by DU at 10:12 AM on October 14, 2011


I love baby logic. If moving one's finger across the glossy surface doesn't do anything, perhaps I should press the baby fat on my left knee instead.
posted by vverse23 at 10:12 AM on October 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


I often try try to unlock the door my house by clicking the fob on my car keys. I has yet to work.
posted by ThatCanadianGirl at 10:12 AM on October 14, 2011 [15 favorites]


My mother last weekend was just reminding me about a family vacation we took back when I was a kid - I think we were going to Disney or somewhere like that. We get to the hotel and my brother and I become enthralled with this thing on the nightstand! It was big and heavy and had disk that turned on the front! We couldn't figure out what it was.

Turned out to be a rotary phone. Once we were told what it was, we tried but could not figure out how to dial it. I imagine this same experience will happen to any future children I may have, since everything will be glass touch screens they will have no idea how to operate buttons or keypads.
posted by backseatpilot at 10:14 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Updating to iOS5, which broke Stanza, which will never be fixed.

Good to know, I read myself to sleep every night with Stanza, so now I will not be updating. Oh well.
posted by nevercalm at 10:16 AM on October 14, 2011


[I would swear my comment above was correctly typed when I hit "post." *sigh*]
posted by ThatCanadianGirl at 10:21 AM on October 14, 2011


By the time this baby is an adult magazines will work the way she expects.

Assuming they still exist, that is.
posted by roue at 10:22 AM on October 14, 2011


I had a tendency to put small important notes on (real, physical) post-its notes, and stick them to the edges of my monitor. Less important ones at the bottom, more important one at the top, where they sometimes blocked a bit of my screen. One time, a post-it at the top was blocking a portion of a window I wanted to read. So I clicked on the window to bring it in front of the post-it.

I thought I was having a brain fart. Turns out I was just ahead of my time.
posted by benito.strauss at 10:25 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


This is why I get freaked when people want to know what apps they should be getting for their baby to play with. How about we start by teaching Baby what reality is first? And then move on to the techno-wizardry.
posted by hermitosis at 10:28 AM on October 14, 2011 [16 favorites]


I have a constant, multiple-times-daily urge to pause things, or skip back 7 seconds, a la Tivo. The radio, conversations, etc.
posted by peep at 10:28 AM on October 14, 2011 [5 favorites]


Just maybe...put down the damn camera, put your child in your lap and leaf through the magazine or book with them. Shortly after that, a magazine might not be "useless and impossible to understand". How wonderful that you have an iBaby.
posted by davebush at 10:29 AM on October 14, 2011 [14 favorites]


As someone who spent his childhood immersed in books, this makes me feel scared and sad.
posted by OverlappingElvis at 10:29 AM on October 14, 2011 [10 favorites]


Yet my finger does work

Well, at least the kid has a keen mind for troubleshooting...
posted by lekvar at 10:30 AM on October 14, 2011 [7 favorites]


On the bright side, think of the good ignorance: She is too young to regard Leonardo, Raphael, Donatello, and Michelangelo as famous because they are Ninja Turtles.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 10:32 AM on October 14, 2011 [9 favorites]


Proud Parent: my kid is going to be so conversant with technology in the future! Books are the past!

Reality in 10 years: doesn't want to study or sit quietly with a book for any period of time; prefers to play flashy video games all day long.

If this generation grows up on iPads, we might have to change our entire school curricula to revolve around course materials that do flashy things when you touch them.
posted by naju at 10:34 AM on October 14, 2011 [7 favorites]


Hehe, this is supposed to be cute but it's kinda scary! Poor kid. I guess it's an unavoidable reality (kids with iPads) but I fantasize about withholding digital crap from my future kids for the formative years, or as long as possible. I feel like it would create a more natural humanistic sense of curiosity, tactile senses, and let's face it, reality. Maybe I'm nuts.
posted by ReeMonster at 10:37 AM on October 14, 2011 [8 favorites]


I look forward to my future kids having the whole world (of information) at their fingertips.
posted by Bovine Love at 10:39 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


I volunteer to teach this kid to use a book, you know, after the Robot Apocalypse, when all the machines stop working.
posted by milk white peacock at 10:39 AM on October 14, 2011


I'm a parent of a 1yo, and I've thought about this. We're not going to give her much screen time, and particularly not much touchscreen time, until she's quite a bit older.

I've thought, a few times, that maybe we'll be depriving her of a chance to get ahead on skills that would make her more (aw, geez) digitally proficient when she's older.

But, the thing is, we can't predict what kind of interfaces will be around when she's, say, 10. Maybe everything will be a headsup display on a pair of glasses or contacts. Maybe it's all voice, or gestures in midair. And they'll all change again by the time she's 20.

The stuff that's worth learning now is the stuff that's not going to change radically in a decade.
posted by gurple at 10:39 AM on October 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


"For my one year old daughter, a magazine is an iPad that does not work.

It will remain so for her entire life."

Oh, no it won't, Dad-Who-Loves-Apple-Products. There are so many things you can do with a magazine that you can't do with an iPad that it's stupid to call a magazine a broken iPad. Magazines are not just for reading.
posted by 23skidoo at 10:41 AM on October 14, 2011 [6 favorites]


Kids should get a firm grasp of how the physical world works before they're introduced to "software physics". I think under four years old is too young for kids to use these devices. Also, this is probably setting them up to make invidious comparisons between software/video game operation and the real-world, leading them to think that the worlds inside the computer are "better" than the real world. Eventually, they might become "better" in some sense, but I doubt they will ever become richer.
posted by Crabby Appleton at 10:43 AM on October 14, 2011 [5 favorites]


From Metafilter's own flashboy:
To which, might I humbly point out: IT’S A BABY. I’m not sure it tells us much about the nature of user interfaces because IT’S A BABY and it DOESN’T UNDERSTAND WHAT MAGAZINES ARE. It also doesn’t understand what an iPad is, or what a user interface is, because it’s a one year old baby and it doesn’t even understand what itself is. Babies aren’t “digital natives” (and by the way oh god stop calling your daughter that), because they aren’t even themselves-natives yet.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 10:46 AM on October 14, 2011 [23 favorites]


naju: "If this generation grows up on iPads, we might have to change our entire school curricula to revolve around course materials that do flashy things when you touch them."

Interactive course materials that aren't limited to the static, physical space of a printed page? How terrible!

Parents have wrung their hands about allowing their kids pretty much any new thing, because it will surely ruin them:

Cell phones
Rap music
Television
Rock n roll music
Comic books
Regular books
Not beating them 4x a day
posted by danny the boy at 10:46 AM on October 14, 2011 [9 favorites]


Nice to know there's a future where we won't be killing tons of trees.
posted by Melismata at 10:49 AM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


How about we start by teaching Baby what reality is first? And then move on to the techno-wizardry.

Right, because iPads are imaginary. It's a baby. It's stupid. I can pop a ballon, so why can't I pop a bowling ball?? Well, maybe we should be introducing babies to ten-pin physics before we expose them to the sorcery of different things being different.

The only thing I'm taking from this thread is how fast MetaFilter and YouTube comments are converging.
posted by cmoj at 10:53 AM on October 14, 2011 [24 favorites]


There are so many things you can do with a magazine that you can't do with an iPad that it's stupid to call a magazine a broken iPad. Magazines are not just for reading.

Seriously, this isn't going to seem so cute when she chops up the iPad with scissors to make a collage.
posted by padraigin at 10:54 AM on October 14, 2011 [10 favorites]




Nice to know there's a future where we won't be killing tons of trees.


Unless those trees happen to be on top of the resources we need to pull out of the ground to make more digital interfaces.
posted by spicynuts at 10:54 AM on October 14, 2011 [11 favorites]


My son (he's five) gets very frustrated with the Roku/Netflix interface on our TV. He wants to use the TV like a giant touch screen and simply sweep across it to get to the show he wants. He's very impatient with the remote.

If this generation grows up on iPads, we might have to change our entire school curricula to revolve around course materials that do flashy things when you touch them.

I'm not concerned. My son can navigate my phone (wish we could afford an iPad) like nobody's business, and can use a mouse, too. Access to these things -- his ability to navigate them himself, to actively learn vs. passively learn - has given him an enormous advantage in learning and world experience over where I was at his age.

But, his favorite thing is still a book, read by me or his father.

Yeah, I'm not concerned.
posted by anastasiav at 10:57 AM on October 14, 2011 [7 favorites]


Not beating them 4x a day

Now there's something that a magazine is still good for.

I mean, you could beat them with an iPad, but it's pretty hard on the iPad.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 10:59 AM on October 14, 2011 [6 favorites]


I go the other way sometimes, unconsciously forgetting that the stuff on my iPad screen isn't real. Happens to me a lot in iThoughts -- I keep licking my finger so it can get a better grip on a node.
posted by middleclasstool at 11:04 AM on October 14, 2011


and my brother and I become enthralled with this thing on the nightstand! It was big and heavy

Ctrl-Z! Ctrl-Z! Ctrl-Z!
posted by dhartung at 11:07 AM on October 14, 2011


Interactive course materials that aren't limited to the static, physical space of a printed page? How terrible!

I think it would be a horrible thing for kids to grow up learning that dreary old non-interactive books are useless and boring, and that nothing is worth learning unless "there's an app for that!"

Television

Don't kid yourself, this assuredly did have a big impact on how we view books.
posted by naju at 11:07 AM on October 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


I think it would be a horrible thing for kids to grow up learning that dreary old non-interactive books are useless and boring, and that nothing is worth learning unless "there's an app for that!"

Serious question: Why?
posted by empath at 11:08 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Our century-old warehouse turned office just got one of those new-fangled electronic directories in lieu of physical nameplates on a board. I walked over to use it and the first thing I did was swipe the screen with my fingers only to find that it remained unresponsive.

Such was my disappointment.
posted by jsavimbi at 11:08 AM on October 14, 2011


This is what happens when the much wiser adult grows too accustomed to his iPad doing everything for him. He forgets(?) that all images don't magically flip right-side-up for him when he flips his camera to the vertical. My money is on the baby figuring this sort of stuff out before the parent.
posted by heyho at 11:09 AM on October 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


Kids should get a firm grasp of how the physical world works before they're introduced to "software physics".

At that age, I'm not sure it really matters. Everything is already magic. People and objects appear and disappear. Toes taste as good as food but can't be eaten. That baby will undoubtedly learn to distinguish eBooks from "real" ones. Do not panic.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 11:11 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Serious question: Why?

Because you don't want the development of your kids' brain to be ultimately dictated by the marketing department at Apple?
posted by Dr Dracator at 11:14 AM on October 14, 2011 [6 favorites]


Serious question: Why?

Because the universe of knowledge contained only in books is larger than the universe of knowledge contained and demonstrated in e-learning apps and software? Because non-private schools aren't going to be handing out iPads to every kid in the classroom in the foreseeable future? Because there's going to be lots of knowledge that can only be learned by sitting down and carefully studying lots and lots of words/numbers/formulas without having an app to hold your hand through everything?
posted by naju at 11:16 AM on October 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


Last year a colleague was reading a bedtime story to his 3 year old daughter. Halfway in she picks up an imaginary TiVo remote, points it at him and says "Pause, Daddy. I'll be right back. I have to go potty."
posted by ericb at 11:16 AM on October 14, 2011 [6 favorites]


My 20 month old daughter used to do this, though I think she has figured out the difference now. She has Sandra Boynton's Going to Bed Book in both iPad and regular book form, and she was puzzled why the regular book wouldn't do all the nifty interactive things that the iPad version would do.
posted by Palquito at 11:16 AM on October 14, 2011


This is like when I tried to separate my seeds and stems from my weed on top of that bandleader.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 11:18 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


On one hand, this makes me a little sad; I work in the printing industry and love the physicality of comics and books, so I'm personally invested in dead trees. On the other hand I doubt very much that having an interactive, gestural device like an iPad is going to seriously curtail this girl's potential interest in physical media any more than growing up with a television, Atari 2600, and heaps of comics have kept me from reading Homer or Pynchon. Remember the hysteria in the 80's when adults thought that your Commodore64 was going to permanently stunt your mental development?
posted by lekvar at 11:23 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


I would not let my 14-month old, who is a pile of fluids and crazy muscles, anywhere near my iPad. Yet he does this exact same thing when confronted with a magazine, a book he is being read, or a window. If confronted with my iPad, I expect he'd think it was what was broken - the caterpillar is not fuzzy, the butterfly is not crinkly, and there is no hole in the Apple.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:27 AM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


Because the universe of knowledge contained only in books is larger than the universe of knowledge contained and demonstrated in e-learning apps and software?

Books that are actually going to be physically available to them?

I don't think that's the case. There might be books somewhere that have more information, but by the time they're in high school, they'll be reading 90% of their 'books' electronically.
posted by empath at 11:28 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


I don't think it's an either/or situation - my 3 year old adores the iPhone - yet every night we snuggle up and read through a stack of paper books.
posted by gomichild at 11:36 AM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


My friends bought an iPad2 recently, and it's incredible to see their 18month girl use it. For some reason sometimes the iPad doesn't recognize her input, I guess because her finger is so small-- so she'll actually grab your index finger and use it like a stylus, it's incredible. We figure she's going to go into management with skills like that.

Unlike the kid in the video-- she seems to know what she's doing, she knows to press her 'games' folder, then pick the cat app, or the nursery rhymes, or the English/Cantonese sound thing, hit's home when she gets bored and picks another.

Whatever you want to berate Apple for, the fact that a toddler can effectively use a device is just an astounding statement at the accessibility of it.
posted by Static Vagabond at 11:38 AM on October 14, 2011 [7 favorites]


There is so much projection in that video, I cannot even

I see a baby who's really engaged with those magazines! She's trying to manipulate them in ways she knows have worked before, but continues playing with them for a long time when they don't work as expected. She almost had page-turning figured out in one scene, before they suddenly cut the video because nope, not the point we're trying to make. There's no reason at all to watch her playing with the paper magazine and think she has some negative opinion about it, or is "giving up" on it.

In conclusion, the average person's understanding of small children, fffffuuuuu
posted by jinjo at 11:40 AM on October 14, 2011 [19 favorites]


One of my favorite stories is from my mom. My brothers and I were born between 1973 and 1976. On a visit to my grandparent's place, we were served a meal of cold fried chicken and potato salad.

My mom was immediately overcome by nostalgic memories of picnic lunches of cold chicken with her parents and sisters. This wave of nostalgia was shattered by my older brother stuffing his chicken in the breadbox and exclaiming "This stupid microwave doesn't work!"

This happens with every generation. But you know what? I know what a breadbox is. I know what a microwave is. And I like cold fried chicken.

My son is two. He knows how to use my iPad. He likes playing games on it and our iPhones. When my wife upgrades her phone, odds are we'll give him her old 3GS (stuck in Airline mode, with parental controls enabled) for him to play with. But he also adores books, he will happily sit for 20-30 minutes at a time leafing through his books (or my books, for that matter - he doesn't seem to care if there are pictures in my books or not!). He also loves to run and jump and climb, and he plays outside with actual things. We aren't worried about his development.

This video bothered me for a minute but then I got over it. I'm not breadboxing about it any more. Neither should you, really.
posted by caution live frogs at 11:42 AM on October 14, 2011 [8 favorites]


Serious question: Why?
...
Because you don't want the development of your kids' brain to be ultimately dictated by the marketing department at Apple?
...
Because the universe of knowledge contained only in books is larger than the universe of knowledge contained and demonstrated in e-learning apps and software? Because non-private schools aren't going to be handing out iPads to every kid in the classroom in the foreseeable future? Because there's going to be lots of knowledge that can only be learned by sitting down and carefully studying lots and lots of words/numbers/formulas without having an app to hold your hand through everything?

Wow, you guys sure start a lot of sentences with "because" and end them with question marks. It was a serious question, so uptalking your answer sounds like you think it was dumb.
posted by Edgewise at 11:43 AM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Goodbye, cruel world. [Ctrl-alt-del]
posted by crunchland at 11:43 AM on October 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


Because you don't want the development of your kids' brain to be ultimately dictated by the marketing department at Apple?

Oh for God's sake.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:48 AM on October 14, 2011 [11 favorites]


Serious question: Why?

I would personally be wary about teaching any young human that what appears on a screen is any more natural, or normal, or real than what appears around it. You're not just invalidating dead-tree books, here. You're invalidating reality.

If you think this potential doesn't exist, you may not be paying close enough attention to the widespread effect of television addiction on the western world.

(I searched for that sentence above and found a wikipedia page that runs through the pros and cons of having an entire society addicted to television. I haven't read it yet. I'm including it here in case others find it relevant.)

And now, back to my terminal. Oh, wait a sec. I'm already on my terminal. WEEEIRD.
posted by tapesonthefloor at 11:50 AM on October 14, 2011


I'm in agreement with flashboy via TheophileEscargot (and on preview, with others as well) - at this age, babies are checking out everything equally; it's all magic. For instance, at one point it looks to me like the kid's not trying to swipe a non-responsive screen so much as grab a "thing" she sees on the page, not yet understanding the difference between a 2D picture and a physical object. By the same token, she isn't "operating" the iPad interface, she's just tickled that it's somehow flashing and moving.
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:53 AM on October 14, 2011


I would personally be wary about teaching any young human that what appears on a screen is any more natural, or normal, or real than what appears around it. You're not just invalidating dead-tree books, here. You're invalidating reality.

Words on the page have no more reality than words on a screen.
posted by empath at 11:56 AM on October 14, 2011 [5 favorites]


6 words to strike terror : Baby spit up on the ipad.
posted by crunchland at 11:57 AM on October 14, 2011


6 words to strike terror : Baby spit up on the ipad.

That's actually a new multi-touch gesture in ios 5.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 11:58 AM on October 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


Good point edgewise, didn't mean to act all fighty.
posted by naju at 11:59 AM on October 14, 2011


My kids, ages 5 and 3, noodle around on my iPhone and iPad and seem to do just fine when confronted with non-interactive media. The only time it becomes confusing is when they encounter electronics that don't have a touch screen. As far they are concerned any screen that you can't directly touch and manipulate is broken or uninteresting. It will be interesting to see how this pans out but worries about this causing confusion, beyond the inherent confusing aspects of digital apps themselves, don't seem well founded in my experience.
posted by dgran at 12:01 PM on October 14, 2011


Hey, if you guys want to do an unprecedented experiment with the wiring of your children's brains during their formative years, go right ahead. It'll be interesting to see how it turns out.
posted by Crabby Appleton at 12:04 PM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


This is all anecdata, but...I work in a public library, and when it comes to kids and books it seems like a mixed bag. A lot of little kids still seem to love and be enthralled by picture books, but for every middle school-age and up kid who loves books there are x+? who openly express disdain at the concept of non-online information sources when they trudge in for the one paper book their teacher has forced them to cite in their project/essay. Whether this is progress or not is best left as an exercise for the...reader.
posted by The Card Cheat at 12:05 PM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Hey guys, just speaking up here for us people in the future. Don't worry about physical media. About....oh, a three hundred years? from now iSpine will be invented. Basically a little strip of complex technology embedded in a thin strip of plastic about the length of an early iPad. It's a device that replicates a page of a physical book... cellulose, ink and all. It's got interact two modes: Page Turn and Tablet. Tablet works as you might expect of any touch technology except your grubby little fingers slide around a piece of actual paper ...though kept rigid by a force field to facility the slidey motion. Basically it achieves what this baby is trying so futilely to do.

Page Turn mostly caters to those with retro tendencies. Hipsters you might call them in this era (we call them MeFites in the current age, hehe). Anyways, in Page Turn mode, iSpine basically uses it's replicator to make 3 pages at at time, so that you can feel like you're turning the pages of a book. It's interesting how they've managed to get the tactile feel down pretty good in the last couple of years. When laying flat, there are only two pages. They are kept are rigid (force fields!), as if resting against a hard-book cover. When you go for the edge to turn, the field deactivates and you've got a floppy page to turn. Another page materializes underneath and you've temporarily got three pages until you lay it down on the other side. This mode puts a strain on the electron pump pretty bad though.

The iSpine occupies a very niche market, between the HoloPad (glare issues) and FreshInk (faster refresh rate than late 2010's E Ink but it may develop sentience and try to kill you). I think it's nice that some people are putting effort into alternative technologies, but I think they're not going to be necessary once MindCrosoft and Apple Biosciences work out their patent litigation and develop the Mind-Source technology so that we can directly manipulate reality with out thoughts.

So don't worry about society as a whole... in terms of how we interact with media ...okay, 'cept the late 2120's, styli and clay tablets following The Seljimin War. Things change. And I think this kid is probably going to be fine in this era too.
posted by Mister Cheese at 12:06 PM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Goes both ways you guys.
I was reading the Bob Mould biography at lunch the other day (in an actual book) and I found myself wanting to tap names to find more about them AND I kept looking at the upper right page to check the time (this does not work, by the way)

Im 37.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 12:08 PM on October 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


Hey, maybe those guys in "The Village" had the right idea.

Whatta tweest!
posted by Kitty Stardust at 12:14 PM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Video should be titled: "Baby touches things randomly"
posted by tylerkaraszewski at 12:15 PM on October 14, 2011 [10 favorites]


"Grandpa, can you tell us a story?"

"Sure, there was this one time we were camping up in ... "

"Grandpa! Start the Keynote already!"
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 12:15 PM on October 14, 2011


Adults seem to be the only ones having trouble reconciling books and iPads. I doubt the current babies and the babies of the future will appreciate everyone thinking they'd grow up to be idiots. They will view books as books and computers as computers, just like most of us do right now. Really, it's a no-brainer. They're two entirely different things.
This is something I most decidedly do not have to own a baby to get my head around.
posted by heyho at 12:17 PM on October 14, 2011


Parents have wrung their hands about allowing their kids pretty much any new thing, because it will surely ruin them

This even extended to books themselves. In the Victorian era, there were parents and educators fighting the introduction of the new inexpensive children's books because they believed they would extinguish children's innate imagination.

Today's children will be living in a world of interactive communication their parents can't begin to imagine.
posted by fairmettle at 12:19 PM on October 14, 2011


Video should be titled: "Baby touches things randomly"

Tweren't nothing random about how she touched it, it didn't move, and she checked the operability of her finger, to determine the source of the problem.
posted by cashman at 12:22 PM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


Hey guys, just speaking up here for us people in the future. --- You can't fool me. I'm pretty sure if you were really from the future, you'd have a distinctly peppier name than "Mr. Cheese."
posted by crunchland at 12:22 PM on October 14, 2011


I just had a cheery thought. Soon, "reader" will be an insult roughly on a par with "neckbeard". "Is that something I'd have to be a <sneer>reader</sneer> to understand?" Well, yes, actually, it is.
posted by Crabby Appleton at 12:23 PM on October 14, 2011


6 words to strike terror : Baby spit up on the ipad.

I actually think that iPAD and iPhone resist baby spit and most other things really well. For instance rice and masala sauce wipe off really well and thus iPhone is perfect distraction at a restaurant when adults are not done yet.
posted by zeikka at 12:24 PM on October 14, 2011


I don't think this is something people should get freaked out about. The baby is just testing out what's possible and not. Oh so if I squeeze like this, the screen changes. But that doesn't happen on the magazine. What about if I do it to my thigh? It's all just part of testing boundaries of what works and what doesn't. The fact that something is on a screen vs. in "real life" doesn't make this process any different.
posted by peacheater at 12:24 PM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


The things that fail to impress kids is astonishing to me. I remember trying to explain to my cousin's six year old that cameras where you can instantly see the picture are a really big deal. She didn't care. Phones with cords attached to the wall? Oh, please. As far as I'm concerned, wireless internet and printing is nothing short of magic. To my sister-in-laws kids, it's a bare minimum. One time when we were driving them around, one of them pointed to the inside of the door and said "what's that for?" I had to explain that it rolled the windows up and down.
posted by Gilbert at 12:28 PM on October 14, 2011


Hey, if you guys want to do an unprecedented experiment with the wiring of your children's brains during their formative years, go right ahead. It'll be interesting to see how it turns out.

What do you think television and other media have been doing for the last five decades?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:28 PM on October 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


Guys, I don't think we should be anthropomorphizing babies.
posted by dirigibleman at 12:31 PM on October 14, 2011 [9 favorites]


I'd write a whole rant about short-attention spans, if I didn't have twelve things going on at the same time here.
posted by crunchland at 12:31 PM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


People aren't forgetting their basic developmental psych just because of the tech angle, are they?

We're talking about babies. You should freak out if your teenager gets thrown by peek-a-boo. Your baby, not so much.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 12:32 PM on October 14, 2011


What do you think television and other media have been doing for the last five decades?

It's the same argument as far as I'm concerned. I'm one of fairmettle's stuffy Victorians, worried about what Dickens might be communicating to our youth, to be perfectly honest. :D But Dickens I can keep up with. Dickens parents can keep up with. Dickens teachers can keep up with. When a device's virtual interface is (re)programming how a forming brain interacts with reality, a parent/teacher can no longer keep up.

I think we underestimate how much not staring at a screen is fundamental to our growth as cool and froody people. I don't think it's something that will ever be positively diagnosed with zero margin of error, but I do think it's something that's going to negatively affect society for decades to come. I'm just a complainer like that.
posted by tapesonthefloor at 12:36 PM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


The whole world is watching.
posted by tapesonthefloor at 12:38 PM on October 14, 2011


When a device's virtual interface is (re)programming how a forming brain interacts with reality, a parent/teacher can no longer keep up.

Books reprogram how people interact with reality just as much as any other artificial product of human technology. I think people are forgetting that books and magazines are technological products with the same potential influence on brain development as, yes, sorry, iPads.

I know how things work around here, but just because Apple made a piece of technology doesn't make a baby using that piece of technology bad. Sheesh.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:48 PM on October 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


I do this with Kindles. What does this prove, if anything?

Oh, it;s that I do not own a Kindle.
posted by mippy at 12:54 PM on October 14, 2011


Ask people who are 40-ish about their first memories of a PC at home or school. Few will tell you that they wished adults had kept them away from new technology.
posted by Houstonian at 12:59 PM on October 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


People aren't forgetting their basic developmental psych just because of the tech angle, are they?

I guess they are--screen time is bad for babies and toddlers.
posted by the young rope-rider at 1:00 PM on October 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that kids under 2 years old not watch any tv or use any electronic media.
posted by diogenes at 1:00 PM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yeah, it's.. a baby. I guess I'd want to see what other 1-year-olds do with magazines. Flip the pages a few times and then crawl off? It's still impressive that the baby figured out that by touching the ipad screen, stuff happens, and then expects that to happen again with a similar object; perfectly logical. Go primates!

Also,

If you've ever had those moments where you try to hit undo for something that just happened in real life...

I played a lot of Sierra adventure games when I was growing up. These games are pretty brutal, and the manuals make a point of telling to you SAVE EARLY, SAVE OFTEN so that when (not if) you die, you only have to redo a screen or two of stuff to get back to where you were.

I must've been playing something a lot that day, because I still have a distinct memory of banging my head against a cupboard really hard one day, and thinking, "That really hurt.. well, I'll just reload my save and not do that next time," and it was a couple of beats before I realized what I'd thought.
posted by curious nu at 1:01 PM on October 14, 2011


My nephew is almost 3, and he is somewhere in the autism spectrum. It's difficult to say exactly where in that spectrum until he's older, but it is clear that he has some developmental challenges ahead of him. There are a number of wonderful iPad apps developed directly for babies and toddlers with autism. Not only does my nephew love playing with them, but his parents report that they definitely have an effect on his behavior and learning patterns.

I mean, I am a total grinch when it comes to Apple fanboy-ism, but it's foolish to say that technology is without a doubt going to damage a child's mind.
posted by jess at 1:06 PM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


I guess I'd want to see what other 1-year-olds do with magazines.

They try to pick them up and/or eat them, from what I've seen.


I mean, I am a total grinch when it comes to Apple fanboy-ism, but it's foolish to say that technology is without a doubt going to damage a child's mind.

I don't get why people are making this a pro- or anti- apple thing (not you, specifically, just in general). Screen time is generally not good for babies or toddlers. Autism changes that risk/benefit calculation, just like you wouldn't put powerful glasses on a baby with normal vision.

I would be very surprised to see many under-1 year olds diagnosed with autism. I know they can diagnose earlier and earlier though, which is great.
posted by the young rope-rider at 1:09 PM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


What bothers me the most about that video is the adult who doesn't know how to "rotate 90 degrees."
posted by SLC Mom at 1:10 PM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Just one year old and already she's on my lawn. *shakes iCane*
posted by Zozo at 1:19 PM on October 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


I am 39 and now catch myself idiotically waving my hands around under not-optically-enabled faucets.

I don't know what it means.
posted by everichon at 1:32 PM on October 14, 2011


Video should be titled: "Baby touches things randomly"

and

There is so much projection in that video, I cannot even

...sum it up well. As one of the comments on my blogpost put it, "She’s just touching and pointing at things. She touches and points at her leg, I presume she doesn’t think that’s an iPad."

I honestly don't see where anybody watching this cold (without being set up to expect "Baby intuitively understands iPad better") would get any sense that the kid is interacting with the iPad in a way that suggests they "get it". All the iPad segments show the baby giggling as the iPad does bright whizzy shiny stuff, but exhibiting absolutely no control over it. Baby prods at thing, thing makes bright lights when it responds, baby giggles. But we don't see the baby actually use the UI at all - she doesn't swipe deliberately, doesn't open any apps, doesn't drag or push anything around the screen, nothing. There's no if-this-then-that.

She's clearly still at the experimenting stage of prodding at anything put in front of her and seeing what it does. I'm not denying for a second that a touchscreen device has the potential to be pretty awesome from a learning point of view for this stage of development - it requires limited dexterity to produce a simple and visually engaging cause-and-effect response, which is cool for babies still figuring out the whole "do a thing, it will have a consistent result" stage of development. But by the same token, you can see clearly in the video that lightweight physical pages also have advantages from this perspective - the baby is able to physically manipulate them easily, and produce a meaningful effect (see different picture!) in a way that may well be more intuitive to understand than the iPad.

If there's any takeaway possible from the video at all, it's just that the iPad's display is more immediately compelling to a baby than a magazine page - but that's to be expected, because one is flashing coloured lights, and the other is an informationally dense, contextually dependent picture-and-text layout that's explicitly targeted at grabbing the attention of culturally-savvy adults. If she'd been given The Very Hungry Caterpillar instead, we might have had a different result.

Shorter version: babies don't read Marie Claire, and this is not a surprise.
posted by flashboy at 1:54 PM on October 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


Unless those trees happen to be on top of the resources we need to pull out of the ground to make more digital interfaces.

But we still need some paper, so we still need to chop down those trees anyway. Just not as many.
posted by John Cohen at 2:02 PM on October 14, 2011


FTA: "Steve Jobs has coded a part of her OS."

Oh my god. Please just shut up.
posted by Ratio at 2:24 PM on October 14, 2011 [7 favorites]


FTA: "Steve Jobs has coded a part of her OS."
Oh my god. Please just shut up.

Yes.
posted by davebush at 2:28 PM on October 14, 2011


I am told that the first time I saw a type writer, I asked where the screen was. So it goes.
posted by flaterik at 2:32 PM on October 14, 2011


A (ca. 1950 model) typewriter is an impact printer with only one input interface (a built-in unbuffered keyboard), no display, and a manual single-sheet paper feed.
posted by Crabby Appleton at 2:45 PM on October 14, 2011


Magazines are not just for reading.

Yeah, but you both a) find things to masturbate to and b) look at photoshopped deathly skinny models on iPads too.
posted by NoraReed at 3:11 PM on October 14, 2011


My cats are smarter than that baby. I have some of these cat games on the iPad. One cat runs away when I hold the iPad out to her, but the other one will happily go fishing for at least 2 or 3 minutes. Magazines? Feh. She wouldn't be fooled by no fish in a magazine. My cats are smarter than that baby, and I am very proud.

On the other hand, I am the kind of person who puts games for cats on the iPad, so I should maybe get out more.
posted by mudpuppie at 3:18 PM on October 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


Baby's First iPhone
posted by briank at 5:33 PM on October 14, 2011


Okay. I'll bite. Screentime is bad for babies and toddlers... how? I mean sure, parking a toddler in front of the television for eight hours a day is bound to be not good for them..

But how is a baby playing with an iPad, or (as mine is doing RIGHT NOW) flicking between videos of children's songs and puzzle games, bad for them? Genuine question.
posted by coriolisdave at 6:33 PM on October 14, 2011


This many comments and no reference to Scotty in Star Trek IV having to learn to use a mouse and keyboard? People, don't forget your time traveling future past! Whales, and the future depend on it.
posted by jadepearl at 6:40 PM on October 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


What do you think television and other media have been doing for the last five decades?

Yeah, seriously. I think about this a lot; I think about the fact that my close, bonding emotional experiences of my childhood weren't with family or friends -- they were with Captain Kirk and E.T., people who, despite all my intellectual understanding, my lizard brain knew were real because I could see and hear them.

There are millions of us who have grown up with identical formative experiences, programmed into us like Deckard's origami unicorn. Millions of us who are still more attached to these experiences, the ones we can re-live again and again with perfect clarity, than we are to each other. I don't know what that's done to us.
posted by webmutant at 7:49 PM on October 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


You know what else isn't "real"? Images in physical paper books. Keep those mind-warpers away from babies!
posted by ignignokt at 7:53 PM on October 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


This got me thinking about a question I have often pondered: why one of my sisters turned out to be a much better artist than me.

Let's think back to what each of us was doing at about 7 years old... She was colouring in books or drawing her own pictures. I was playing around with MS Paint, often even making abstract images or textures rather than drawings of objects.

While it's true that I yearn for the undo button and the toolbox when I'm trying to draw on paper, I don't think Paint "ruined" me or anything. I think there are only so many hours in a day, and she chose to develop her fine motor skills, whereas I chose to develop my computer skills.

So back to the ipad/baby thing, the question for me isn't so much whether it will mess up children's brains. The question is whether those same "ease of use" features that attract us to the ipad as adults will deprive children of opportunities to develop useful skills. As long as their use is reasonably restricted I don't see it being a problem.
posted by mantecol at 9:28 PM on October 14, 2011


My two year old son believes that most of the screens in our house are broken because they don't work like mum's phone. Apparently they need batteries.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 1:19 AM on October 15, 2011


A thresher is just a broken vending machine.
posted by Eideteker at 10:54 AM on October 15, 2011


I don't know why it's bad for them on a neuroscience level. The American Academy of Pediatrics has reviewed the research and said no screen time under 2, and having read their position I agree.
posted by the young rope-rider at 11:39 AM on October 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's Official: To Protect Baby's Brain, Turn Off the TV
"A decade ago, the American Academy of Pediatrics' recommendations on television consumption by infants were based as much on common sense as science. The research has finally grown up—and the verdict is harsh."
posted by ericb at 2:25 PM on October 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


But how is a baby playing with an iPad, or (as mine is doing RIGHT NOW) flicking between videos of children's songs and puzzle games, bad for them?

from ericb's article: "I don’t have a problem with touch screens, and they’re not necessarily bad. But we need to understand how this affects kids."

It's "bad for them" (extremely relative classification) because you aren't interacting with them directly. Very young children do not learn from mediated content. They learn from talking and playing with other people.

I let my 3 year old play drawing games on my wife's iPad, but I don't pretend it's anything than a time-waster/occupier. It's not much different than watching TV but with more interactivity.

Essentially, from ericb's link above:

“While television is on, there’s less talking, and talk time is very important in language development,”

Also

Even when media plays in the background, it distracts babies from play, an activity that is known to have deep developmental benefits. And for parents who use media to carve out a few precious, necessary free minutes in busy schedules, Brown recommended letting kids entertain themselves.

Two things here. First, when a TV is on anywhere in the room, it distracts everyone, particularly young kids because yeah, glowing magical box. Second, getting a young child to give a parent free minutes can be very hard at times, but using a TV as a babysitter is going to bite you in the ass later big time. I think developing independent play and self-learning is critical.
posted by mrgrimm at 10:07 AM on October 19, 2011


A good counterpoint (albeit fictional and not really based in neuroscience as far as I know) to the alarm about babies and iPads that just occurred to me at this late juncture: the girls in Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age, who grow up with an interactive, all-encompassing learning device, the Primer. The iPad isn't to the level of the Primer yet, but there are definitely similarities there... Granted, the girls are a bit older than a baby when they are each given the Primer, but it's still an interesting commentary on one possible path things could take.
posted by limeonaire at 11:23 AM on October 24, 2011


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