Real work

Real work

marco from Fraser Speirs:

For years we’ve all held to the belief that computing had to be made simpler for the ‘average person’. I find it difficult to come to any conclusion other than that we have totally failed in this effort.

Then Fraser Speirs on future shock and the definition of “real work:”

The tech industry will be in paroxysms of future shock for some time to come. Many will cling to their January-26th notions of what it takes to get “real work” done; cling to the idea that the computer-based part of it is the “real work”.

Here’s the thing:

It’s not. The Real Work is not formatting the margins, installing the printer driver, uploading the document, finishing the PowerPoint slides, running the software update or reinstalling the OS.

The Real Work is teaching the child, healing the patient, selling the house, logging the road defects, fixing the car at the roadside, capturing the table’s order, designing the house and organising the party.

My mother (no tech-savvier than yours) left me a voicemail yesterday from my grandmother’s hospital room. She asked where she could find a link to a certain video of me, as she wanted to show my grandmother.

I texted her back.

Emailed her the link.

This morning, she emailed to say that my grandmother — a woman I haven’t seen for nearly 20 years — propped up a laptop on her “tummy” (my mom still speaks like this) and saw me for the first time from her hospital room. The version of Real Work getting done in my family even now. But there’s a long way to go.