CULTURAL AND ECONOMIC PERSPECTIVES OF TECHNOLOGY
From a cultural perspective, people embrace technology. Technology does not embrace people. And given that people are immersed in more technology today, than ever before, it’s smart to question the main driver of modern day innovation.
Technology unites us. Technology divides us. Which side are you on?
There is no silver bullet answer. No side worth taking or defending.
But as we progress into the future, it’s valid to say that people will spend less time questioning the effects of a world divided by tech and more time embracing it.
Remember your last conversation about tech — discussing the next smartphone you are going to buy, or the new app you downloaded. What about the virtual reality experience you had at the shopping mall?
Talking about tech is one thing. Talking to tech is another.
And today, we do it. We talk to tech. Google Home. Siri. Amazon Echo. We embrace it. Because it delivers to our demands and even speaks our language — the code to communication.
Do we demand the convenience, speed and increased productivity?
Perhaps technology stakeholders, entrepreneurs and data scientists view technology from an economical vantage?
From an economic point of view, technology embraces people. People don’t embrace technology. Driving commerce is the goal.
In doing so, we build for the needs of the people and must adapt to the evolving demands of humanity. We are taught to ask questions, to poke at the problems, then go back to the drawing board and solve them. Whether it’s packing 12.3 megapixels into a camera…on your phone…in the palm of your hand. Or hopping into a car that drives itself.
What’s wrong with 10 megapixels? But what if I want to drive my own car?
The economy does not ask these questions.
The economy must grow. And in order to grow, humanity seeks to innovate.
Like we always have, and always will.
And as technology progresses, people get accustomed to solving their every day problems with different tools. They are familiar with the problems they need to solve to yield convenience, speed and increased productivity — the three pillars of modern day tech.
But there is learning curve to solve old problems with new technology.
Reducing the learning curve is the goal. To make it easy. At the click of a button. To enable rapid sifting through data to discover correlations worth acting on.
Easy = mass adoption.
Who reads user manuals? That’s corporate jargon. The new user manual is marketing. By the time consumers pay for technology or opt in to a ‘new way of solving old problems’, they already know how to use it.
The fundamental component to sales is in the functionality of how a product works. So we market simplicity for complex technology, leaving consumers to expect it to work, without thinking about how it works.
Better marketing = less thinking.
Better technology = less effort.
And that’s from both a cultural and economic point of view.