A Microsoft tech developer has created an app that serves as “a button that will save [us] from awkward social interactions,” and the internet has never been so pleased.
In detailed Medium post, in which she includes the code for the app, Chloe Condon explains she’s an ambivert, a combination of extrovert and introvert, which can often make socializing an exhausting experience. Even if we’re not ambiverts, many of us can relate: Whether it’s at a work conference or at a friend’s party, it’s easy to get cornered by someone who won’t stop talking about their most recent vacation or their very average analysis on 2020 politics. And even if the person you’re talking to is interesting, you might just want to leave.
“My social interaction limit is much shorter than most, so an app like this felt like something that would not only be fun to build, but also useful to me on a daily basis,” Condon told the Daily Dot over email.
The app can be triggered with the use of a Flic, a Bluetooth button that can fit into your palm. It’s demonstrated in this video below featuring a (very) robotic boyfriend, so maybe don’t put your phone on speaker if you’re using this in a social setting.
Condon’s app is not really the first of its kind. Because we’re a generation of awkward silences and doing anything to get out of actually interacting with other humans, similar apps and features exist. Fitbit launched called “Bail Out” last March that triggers a phone call to get people out of bad dates.
Since Condon announced her app last week, people have been sharing ideas for other forms of triggers.
I need to set up the laugh track. My husband has this amazing ability to sigh with his eyes when I tell my hilarious jokes. This would be the icing on the cake— Diana McKinlay (@_dianadev) March 30, 2019
Condon’s app is definitely useful, but does reignite a Twitter conversation last week, inspired by thread from actress Jameela Jamil, about how unfortunate it is that women often have to use the “I have a boyfriend” trope to get out of harassing conversations with men.
But even if a “fake boyfriend” is the example she used in her video, Condon said she has also made other potential identities of people who could call you because it’s 2019 and we’re finally moving away from being dependent on men (real or imaginary) to save us. Also, we’re not all straight.
“We’re all unique, and I knew while building this that each user may need a different ‘caller.’ That’s why I have open-sourced the project so it’s customizable for each person’s individual scenario,” Condon said. “At the moment, you can use app to make a fake boyfriend, female cousin, gal pal, female coworker, girlfriend, etc. I’m so excited to see how people refashion it as an open source project and make it their own.”