My Life

I still don’t own a mobile phone…

So yeah I still don’t own a mobile phone.

I have buckets of other devices but I have only ever owned one mobile phone. That phone, a giant ugly handset that couldn’t even fit in a pocket only took a couple calls (one of them being my phone interview for BioWare).

Still every once in a while I find myself out and about and regret not having a phone to make a quick call but it happens rarely. So, am I missing out? And if so what would you recommend I buy?

It should be noted that I hate any kind of commitment, including contracts.

Former lead designer at BioWare (Dragon Age: Origins, Neverwinter Nights). Creator of Raiders of the Serpent Sea.


  • Laurie Tom

    I have a pay-as-you-go phone. I rarely use it, but it’s nice when your car breaks down on the side of the road (which it actually has for me). I don’t have a contract. I just prepay for the minutes.

  • Robert

    Good grief! How did you get that one past the doctors? Was there no expectation to be available 24/7 in case there were any fires to fight? Especially during crunch periods? I tried to resist cellphones invading private time at the start of the noughties, by switching them to silent mode after 8pm. Then I got more responsibilities and started equating calls with fees and fees with careers. So the trusty mobile phone stayed on 24/7 from early 01. My personal bugbear is the Blackberry, and the expectation that an “urgent” email from another time zone at the other end of the planet get an instant response. The onus is now on you to answer, rather than on the sender to ensure it goes out during civilized business hours except in rare crises. It’s worse than having a baby in terms of not getting sleep. At least with the baby, you know that it will start sleeping normally eventually…

  • Brent Knowles


    Yeah not sure how I avoided getting the dread cellphone. Most of the other managers had them. Though I had got plenty of late night phone calls on my landline as it was so maybe they just figured I didn’t leave the house much and was easy to track down.

    I actually really hate the use of mobile devices in the office… I can’t even count the number of meetings I was in where a major executive looked up from their phone after thirty minutes and asked, “What were we talking about?” basically voiding the entire meeting. The devices can be really distracting. I think if I were to start a company I’d forbid them from being activated while in the office.

    I also noticed a huge productivity decline once everybody started walking around with cellphones and iPhones and whatnot. I know a lot of people would argue the opposite but it wasn’t what I saw… more meetings… more distracted people… and more stress… everybody thinking they needed to be dealing with what was happening on their phone rather than the discussions they were supposed to be having.

    – Brent

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