I was updating plugins this morning on this blog, because that’s what responsible people do, and noticed that I hadn’t written here in a while. I also noticed there was an unpublished post in draft. It was from March of 2014. Would I write it differently today? Probably. There’s likely reason I didn’t post it. I have no recollection of why. I decided just to hit publish without editing, except for this intro. Let’s just call it a visit from a ghost of my blogging past. 🙂
This video is a classic scene from The Matrix.
We’re living in a version of the matrix.
The result of the introduction of new technologies is a change in what we perceive as real. We begin to see the world differently than we did before the launch of the technology. It’s inevitable. “Embedded in every tool is an ideological bias,” Neil Postman wrote in Technopoly, “a predisposition to construct the world as one thing rather than another, to value one thing over another, to amplify one sense or skill or attitude more loudly than another.” Twenty years from now, we are likely not to recognize this world we live in today.
This movie scene came up in a casual business conversation the other day. “There is no spoon,” was said in joking as we discussed the relative merits of a pitched product. It struck me that in our version of the matrix our spoons are the shiny objects peddled to us as the next thing we can’t live without, or that without which our businesses won’t survive. We are in a constant state of barrage about the wonders of technology, the internet, etc. And most of these have only marginal relevance to the quality of our businesses, let alone our lives.
The truth is, there are no shiny objects. And we should be bending them as we see fit, not being bent by them.
But you knew that already.
Kristal Kraft says
So now you tell me! 🙂
Jeff Turner says
Sorry, should have hit publish sooner. 🙂
Bob Dailey says
Love it. All the technological advances, auto-attended support desks, user forums, Twitter feeds, and everything else that companies create to provide the answers and support we need for the products we use haven’t yet replaced dialing zero to talk to a person. I now find myself searching a company’s website looking for the Live Chat option to cut through the nonsense and get to the answer I’m seeking.
Jeff Turner says
Talking to people is expensive and for many things, not required, but a real human answering questions is worth the price.
Bill Leider says
Your observation that there are no shiny objects made me flash back many years to a philosophy class at UCLA. The final exam consisted of the professor walking to the center of the room and placing a simple wooden chair on the floor for everyone to see.
“Prove to me that this chair does not exist,” he said. That was it. An entire semester’s work and 100% of the grade for the class rested on one’s ability to prove that the chair did not exist. Busy minds churned. Complex theories exploded on the pages of Blue Books as essays were spontaneously written at warp speed. Mass intellectual diarrhea. All of them got failing grades.
One student got an A. Here was his answer. “What chair?”
We see what we choose to see. We hear what we choose to hear. The rest of it doesn’t exist for us. The trick is to see and hear the things that enrich our lives, that help us make a difference, that take us down the road of a fulfilled life – and disregard the other crap.
Jeff Turner says
I chose to hear this: “The trick is to see and hear the things that enrich our lives, that help us make a difference, that take us down the road of a fulfilled life – and disregard the other crap.”