The Stuff Lent Gadget Fast – Day 4

We're past the halfway point of Stuff's Gadget Fast, and the team's learning to cope with the absence of their treasured tech

Paddy – music

I thought being on holiday without music would be miserable, but it’s actually manageable. The absence of music in my daily routine has its ups and downs. On the plus side, I’m first to hit the dancefloor on a night out. On the flip side, I was subjected to Semisonic’s woeful 1999 hit Secret Smile in a shop the other day and had it in my head for the next five hours. Now I’m off to a wedding – I just need to wait for the bride and groom to get the dancing under way before I start shaking a leg.

Stephen – smartphone

The thing that’s kept me sane over the past week is my Asus Transformer Prime – unlike the iPhone it’s Wi-Fi only, and its bulk means you don’t feel compelled to whip it out at every opportunity. I’ve tried to keep its use to a minimum – it does feel a bit like cheating, giving up a smartphone and then using a slightly larger mobile device with the same complement of apps. Still, the minor hassles involved in using a tablet over a smartphone have taught me that maybe I’m using the iPhone too often – checking e-mails mid-meal, browsing Reddit while trying to read a book. Perhaps I am learning something from this experience, after all.

Esat – Reddit

I sprang (okay, crawled) out of bed this morning, fresh in the knowledge that it was the weekend – no work, no distractions. As I was checking my email, I opened up a new tab and entered the first URL that popped into my head. Hello, Wikipedia. Starting off with the Reddit entry, I clicked on through to ten other pages. What followed was an entertaining descent into spontaneous knowledge. Naturally, the first page I went to was the Reddit entry. From there, I read about Obama, Christianity, Hitler, the Boston Tea Party and eventually ended up learning about a rather interesting ancient Chinese fellow called Shennong, Emperor of the Five Grains. Today I Learned: Shennong reportedly invented the hoe, plows, axes, wells and irrigation. Oh, and he also preserved seeds by boiling them in horse urine. Take that, Reddit.

Luke – instant messaging

Organising a night out, sans text, is near impossible. I sent an email out two days ago. An insurance move for my mates who check them rarely. And still, hours before going out, not everyone has replied. What am I supposed to do? Call each one of them? I can’t believe that’s how we used to organise things – I bet BT was loving it.

Lucy – iPad

The weekend is proving to be a true test of my mental strength – it's when I get the most mileage out of my iPad. On the plus side I'm reading a lot more and am now a lot closer to finishing Game of Thrones than I was a week ago. So there are positives to take from this – but I'm not going to lie, not being able to casually browse the web, read my favourite sites and have a casual flick through Facebook and watch YouTube vids on my favourite rectangle is bringing out my stroppy side. Yes, I know I have my laptop and smartphone, but it's not the same. The only thing keeping me from pulling my hair out is seeking solace in the knowledge that Gadget Lent is doing wonders for my impromptu online shopping sprees – and my bank account – which mainly take place on the weekend. 

Sophie will report in with her experiences shortly. Give her a break, it’s the weekend...

The Stuff Lent Gadget Fast – Day 0

The Stuff Lent Gadget Fast – Day 1

The Stuff Lent Gadget Fast – Day 2

The Stuff Lent Gadget Fast – Day 3

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