Now consider addiction by design. What is not understood about modern slot machines – certainly not by the UK’s Labour party, which recently tried to spark a moral panic on the subject – is that they do not try to drain your money away quickly. They do so slowly, by maximising “time on device”. The machines are cheap to run: what is the hurry? Machine gamers do not even play to win: they play to play. The aim of the machine is to deliver constant reinforcement – for instance, the “false win”, where a player is treated to fanfares and flashing lights after betting $3 and winning 60 cents.
Here, the natural analogy is with Facebook, Twitter and Google. These companies, ultimately, are selling one thing: our attention. Nothing about Facebook makes sense until you view it as a well-honed system for persuading you to check Facebook one more time.
A Facebook of the Future: Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg Show Us Their New Content, New Algorithms, and New Alliances [http://www.vanityfair.com/business/2013/05/facebook-future-mark-zuckerberg-sheryl-sandberg] : The best article about Facebook I’ve read in a long time – an excellent summary of recent history there.
Meat – a charming short story about mankind [http://www.terrybisson.com/page6/page6.html]: > “They’re made out of meat.” “Meat?” “Meat. They’re made out of meat.” “Meat?” “There’s no doubt about it. We picked up several from different parts of the planet, took them aboard our recon
Visceral Apps [http://mysterioustrousers.com/news/2013/3/25/visceral-apps-and-you]: > when properly done, a visceral app actually causes your body to release endorphins. Worth a read considering this was a real emphasis with Facebook Home and its UI physics too.