Movie Monday: Why Ferris Bueller’s Tricks Wouldn’t Work with Mobile Apps

By katie simpson on October 13, 2014


A/N: Editor’s Note: This was originally posted in January 2014. This post has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness. 

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, an American classic that resonates almost 30 years later. It’s hard not to love Matthew Broderick’s charm as Ferris, even as he steals an amazing day. 

But, would he have succeeded in skipping school today? With smartphones and mobile apps, probably not. 

Remember the Excuse

Ferris’s go to tricks wouldn’t work so well today (source)

Ferris is brilliant at tricking his own parents. He even admits his tricks to the audience. While never having a fever, he pretends to have cold clammy hands, a sweaty forehead and “seeing spots”. It’s enough to convince his parents to stay home, without going to the doctor’s office. 

But today, a concerned parent could make an app to enter in a kid’s symptoms. They could note the symptoms in a mobile app, as well as record his temperature each and every time. After eight previous sick days in one semester, a parent could go to the doctor with accurate recordings of these “symptoms”. Then Ferris’s day off would have turned into a day at the doctor’s office. 

Get Visual Evidence

If only she had a phone with a camera (source)

In the middle of the day, Jeannie runs home to catch Ferris playing hooky. Sure enough, she opens his door to see the rigged contraption in his bed. She screams in frustration, unable to prove Ferris is lying to her parents.

Today this rigged contraption wouldn’t work. Smartphones and tablets of all kinds could easily take and share photos instantaneously. All Jeannie would have to do is take a photo and she’d have all the proof she needed. 

Worried about when the photo was taken? With a mobile app, you can have an automatic time and date stamp to go with it. If you wanted to be 100% certain, you could also add GPS location. Jeannie would not only have visual evidence, but also blocked any response from Ferris. 

Maintain Safe Records

Ed Rooney, the school principal, calls Mrs. Bueller to discuss his missing days. Only problem? Ferris is able to access the system and change his attendance record. What was once nine days has mysteriously turned into two. 

While humorous in the movie, the ability to hack into systems isn’t anything new. In fact, students have learned this trick and even applied it as recently as two years ago

Mobile apps can protect your system from data manipulation. At GoCanvas, we triple encrypt your data. The first time occurs on your phone. The second time happens in transit between device and the cloud. We finally encrypt it on our servers. Maintaining your data isn’t just about professionalism: it’s about an accurate view of your business. 

“If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

You don’t need to go to an art museum to appreciate the details (source)

It’s more than his charm and mischief that makes audiences for decades love him. He enjoys life, and relishes the details that can make an ordinary day, extraordinary. He knows that taking time to notice things matter. It’s Mr. Rooney’s inattention to detail that lets Bueller go free multiple times. 

This same attention to detail makes businesses great as well. They do more than just gather their data: they use it to find and resolve issues. From logistics to customer service, understanding and working off these details can improve businesses and allow opportunity to excel. 

Today, you don’t need to be a big company with a department to collect and go over the data. You can be a one man business, mobile apps will give you the edge. They make collecting the data easy, and accessing it even easier. Maybe they won’t give you an epic day off, but they will give you the opportunity to grow and thrive. 

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