Micro boredom — a brief spell during the day when one grows weary. Micro boredom may appear at the bus stop while you’re waiting for a bus, when you’re queuing up to the cashier’s office, or on the Metro.

Electronic devices effectively fill in free minutes or even seconds. But for all that this information which user turns to, should be entertaining (social networks, games, etc.). The thing is that if there is a barrier arising that requires to make an effort (e.g. to think), attention tries to switch to a more undemanding task.

Micro boredom can catch you even when you tie shoelaces or pop a sandwich into your mouth. Getting information is like greasing the wheels of our daily activities. And if don’t do this, we’ll hear the creak of our laziness. Of course, when you raise body from the chair to dust the table, you won’t have the dopamine dose released. Often we wolf the information down keeping our eyes on the tablet, to do only routine activities without realizing that we’re already on the hook.

The boredom virtues

“The idea, that we will never have to be alone, is central to changing our psyches. Because the moment that people are alone, even for a few seconds, they become anxious, they panic, they fidget, they reach for a device.” Sherry Turkle, a sociologist and an expert in human-technology interaction, Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

But is it really right thing to do — to escape from boredom? Boredom and loneliness are ones of the spurs to creativity, as they make room for a person to look at and realize the world, and to listen to their inner voice. As Marcel Proust stated, “True books are those born in darkness and silence.”

Within the scope of an investigation into media asceticism in 2014, people gave up gadgets and social networks for several days. Among the plus points of the experiment were mentioned: the feelings that have long since been forgotten, such as boredom or the feeling of desolation. These feelings fuelled the flashes of inspiration for the respondents.

Psychologist Edward Hallowell notes that “If you think of boredom as the thing which comes before creativity…then it is a good thing. Boredom is a door to something better, as opposed to something to be hated and escaped immediately.”


You can turn micro boredom times into the times for recharging your batteries. Like athletes who make the most of every single break, you can give your body a minute to recover, instead of burdening your brain with new information.

Techno-rage — extreme anger evoked by sophisticated interface of the software and its breakdowns. The opposite feeling is “techno-gratitude” which refers to a desire to thank technology for its impeccable work.

A program error can unleash the latent tendency to the manifestation of discontent at technologies. Totally sound people when sitting at computers, mutter curses through clenched teeth, and pretty often in full voice. A flash of anger can be brought on by a lost file, unavailable image or program error.


The opposite, very uncommon feeling is techno-gratitude. Please tell, how often did you want to answer automatic SMS on the topping up with human “thank you”, or to thank your computer which every day tolerate your stare (mark you, sometimes not very kind), or maybe your smartphone, which is the closest thing to your body, and the light bulb that illuminates the to your door?

The researchers of “happiness” state that to be happy, it is crucially important and even essential to thank. We strike technology off our gratitude list despite the fact that it has long been surrounding us with no less dense crowd than people do, and which also has its individuality. Why the technology gets only our grumbling, rage and blows?


Take two minutes right today, and say “thank you” to the gadgets around you. To a laptop, monitor, personal smartphone. Fill ringing emptiness of the relationship between humans and robots with human warmth and gratitude. Let it be also a “thank you” to all the people who were involved in creation of these devices. To the tired Chinese people, who assemble iPhones with their little hands at Apple factories, to the California engineers who wrote the code for the services which tabs are open now at your computer.

Techno-rage accidents can be considered as opportunity for the mindfulness and tranquility practice. It is worth bearing in mind that you rage against a processor without a soul. And who is the master of the situation?

Loading Meditation — contemplating load icon animation while waiting for the program to answer, paging in, or during the network search.

It is just during the loading meditation when it dawns on the user that he has lots of other important things to do. This is often followed by shutting down the program and switching to another occupation.

Keeping in mind the significance of the latency time, application developers often shape the loading icon in the form of an archetypal symbol of eternity, recurrence, or perpetual motion. Common examples are: a serpent devouring its own tail in the social network Vkontakte, the wheel symbol in Instagram.


Apart from during loading meditation, person can experience trance-like emotions even when engaging in monotonous gadgets related actions. Computer games researchers note that playing mobile games is starting to perform the role of beads, when man mechanically does repetitive actions such as throwing game birds or creating lines of blocks in Tetris. However, unlike the present meditation, which aims at quieting the mind, meditation on the gadgets is nothing but a trap for a scattered attention.

Obsessive-compulsive pleasure — enjoyment of the return to your page with the aim to re-read old entries and admire your own words and comments one more time.

Every new comment can be considered as a chance to claw back your words and to evoke the past experience. The “like” got earlier allows you to relive an old joke, as if it was just made.

Boot Screen Windows 98

The “Digital Vocabulary” is a unique project. Nowadays, a great many write about technology’s impact on mankind (I’ve read almost everything of that, therefore my judgement can be called authoritative), but only Alex and Dmitry could comprehend, make it loud and simple, show it from an unexpected point of view, bring in their own insights and create a fabulous in its depth analytical portal, which considers all the aspects of the homo digitalis life. It is remarkable that both voluntarily Internet-addicted and committed techno luddites and media ascetics would find a lot of exciting things. Highly recommended to all fans of pushing the boundaries of reality: “Digital Vocabulary” provides a detailed 3D-model of the digital world and tools to its contemplation.

Irina Gusinskaya
Deputy Editor-in-Chief, Head of Interactive Publishing at Alpina Publisher