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peaktime the application

by Caroline Haberkorn

Background It is time to use the advantages of new media according to satisfy your needs. Let’s take back control over communication technology instead of letting it control how we use our time! Since the digital revolution our access to information through the World Wide Web has grown rapidly. And as laptops and smartphones become our constant companions, communication technologies enable us to be connected with each other independently from time and space. This offers great opportunities like staying in contact with people abroad or having flexible work places. But being reachable at any time and place make us believe that we always have to be available as well. In our fast paced society it is very difficult to find some time off by yourself or quality time with a friend as you feel afraid you will miss something or will appear impolite. But these recovery periods are really needed. Otherwise we run the risk of getting permanently stressed out which leads to even more serious diseases like burnout and depression. We have to start rethinking our behaviour and expectations in the virtual world and become just as independent as we are in our real lives.

Application With the application peaktime you can easily take control over your communication channels. Adjust it according to your needs and it will regulate your availability in a polite manner and you will not miss anything important.

Feature The peaktime app works like an answering machine for all your communication media. According to your settings it will help you to disconnect for the time you need. You will not be reachable by everyone and won’t see who tried to contact you later either, but you can use all your devices and the internet as you want to. In case someone tries to reach you the app will answer your contacts in a polite way and when you decide to get connected again you can feel calm and relaxed.

Icon The basic icon of the app is a triangle shape containing a smaller triangle in the right corner, which can slide a bit to the right. By changing the shape you also change your status from connected to disconnected.



Technology Cloud The application peaktime is suitable for all your devices. Once downloaded you register on the website and then are able to retrieve your settings from any internet server. That is made possible by a web server, the peaktime cloud, which runs the actual application and keeps all your changes and settings updated on all your devices. You can comfortably disconnect or connect yourself by using the jewellery, the app or an independent browser. They all work together. On the following pages the app is explained with a smartphone used as an example.

Activation The app’s icon is always visible in the taskbar on your device’s screen. In order to disconnect you just slide the small triangle to the right to change the shape. You can always reconnect by sliding it back again. If you have set a certain time you

want to be disconnected, or if you change the shape of the jewellery, the app will automatically connect you again and the icon will change status.

Properties In the properties window you can reach all settings as well as you can see your current installations.

By pushing the small triangle in either the connected or disconnected state you reach the properties of the application

By pushing a property’s icon you reach its settings.

Status + Home

Time + current activated time

Groups + activated groups


Present + activated link

Cloud properties

Time Here you can set a repeating disconnection time or an date and time when you plan to get connected again. The app will always update your messages.

Activate The time option is always activated regarding politeness to people who try to contact you. But it is possible to uncheck this settings if you want to. Be aware that it will automatically be switched on again the next time.

Date The current date is automatically displayed and does not need to be changed if you only want to disconnect for a few hours. In case you want to change the settings simply scroll down the months and days until the desired date shows up.

Clock time To set the time when you want to be connected again just scroll down the hours and minutes until the desired time is set.

By default Chose how many hours you want to be disconnected from communication technologies automatically in case you do not set a new time.

Count-up Next to your peaktime icon in the main window you can see for how long you have been connected, in this example it has been for 10 days. When you are disconnected the time when you will be reconnected appears.

Groups Your contacts can be managed in several groups. When you activate the app this allows you to decide which people are disconnected and how.

Add a group You can add as many groups to your settings as you want to.

Address book This icon updates all your contacts in your devices. Here it is possible to assign different people to your groups.

Emergency number Assign one or more contacts who should never be disconnected from you.

All groups If you activate this icon all your groups except the emergency contact will be activated..

Unknown This icon manages all numbers that are not assigned to any group or are unknown.

Messages Next to every group you will find a message sign. An “s” for standard or a “p” if you have installed a personalised message for the group. Slide the icon to change between standard and personal messages. Press the “p” icon if you want to edit it directly.

Activate a group To select the groups you want to get activated the next time you disconnect, just slide the small triangle of their icon. They will now be shown in the main properties window as well.

Message In this category the standard and personal answer messages can be edited according by group and you can select which information you want to be delivered.

Message standard Push this icon to edit a standard answer in your communication mailboxes. It should work in every situation and for every group in order to fit an urgent disconnecting situation.

Social media Push here to write a status for your social media homepages. The disconnected icon will automatically be your profile picture.

Personal message Pick this icon to enter a personal answer to one or more groups. This is useful if you for example want to answer one group in another language or if you do not want to set a certain disconnection time.

Telephone standard Record a message including place holders for time and name.

Email standard Enter a standard email answer including place holders for time and name. The receiver of the email answer will be able to choose if his/ her email should be delivered when you reconnect. The person has to decide if the email will still be important at that time.

Sms standard Enter a standard sms including place holders for time and name.

Example message standard This is a suggested standard message. The place holders will automatically be filled in with the chosen time and the receiver’s name if it is known.

Add a personal message Here you can add a personal answer. It will automatically appear as a new option in the group’s choices for answers.

Message organizer To get an overview of your messages and their assignments push this icon. You can easily edit, delete copy or assign them in a new way.

Assign an answer Simply drag the desired answer to the group’s speech bubble.

Telephone personal Record a personal message including place holders for time and name.

Email personal Enter a personal email answer including place holders for time and name. The receiver of the email answer will be able to choose if his/ her email should be delivered when you get connected again. The person has to decide if the email will still be important at that time.

Sms personal Enter a standard sms including place holders for time and name.

Example added message After adding a new answer option it appears in the group’s choices.

Present Here you have the possibility to give all your rejected contacts a small present until you will be reachable again. Just enter a link to a nice song you found or upload a picture from your vacation and let people be a part of your journey.

Cloud If you click at this button you will be able to edit general settings as well as to look at your connection history.

Email Here you can manage all your email accounts.

Telephone + sms Here you can manage all your telephone numbers.

Social media Here you can manage your social media accounts.

Diary By pushing this icon you can check your disconnection diary.

Example of a personal diary Every hour of each day is displayed as one circle. Hours you are disconnected get filled with a colour that depends on your activated groups. Every day creates your personal pattern. How does your pattern look like?


“Some of the things we do now with our devices, are things we only a few years ago would have found odd or disturbing (...) People text or shop or go on facebook during classes, during presentations actually during all meetings. People talk to me about the important new skill of making eyecontact while you are texting.� Sherry Turkle, Psychologist, February 2012

peaktime_the jewellery and peaktime_the application are part of the master thesis project dis-connected, switch the off-button on. They were developed in the program Design Individual Specialization at HDK - School of Design and Crafts at Gothenburg’s University, Sweden by Caroline Haberkorn.

For more information feel welcome to take contact! caroline.haberkorn@gmail.com

Š Caroline Haberkorn, 2012

Profile for Caroline Haberkorn

Peaktime the application  

One of two handbooks for my master thesis Peaktime at the School of Design and Crafts, Gothenburg in 2012. Its about a concept of an applica...

Peaktime the application  

One of two handbooks for my master thesis Peaktime at the School of Design and Crafts, Gothenburg in 2012. Its about a concept of an applica...

Profile for chaberko