I'm starting to regret being such a cheerleader for the utopia of digital convergence. Anyone else starting to think that the transition to doing everything digitally would have been best done over 50 years, instead of 25, with a bit more risk assessment and forward planning by everyone involved?

@strypey What are cases of technological introductions in which the risk assessment and mitigation part(s) were done correctly? Has that ever even happened?

Genetic engineering comes to mind. At least they tried, with the 1975 Asilomar Conference:


I mean, hell, Gutenberg's press blew up Europe (and the Catholic Church) for a century or four.

@dredmorbius @strypey

Technological innovation tends to lead to direct competitive advantage, even in academia (access to funding), and that leads to incentives to always push forwards as fast as possible. Ethics and morality puts one at a disadvantage, and even 'good' ppl jump the shark with an "we address that later" rationalisation.

Framing and framing effects are important too. I have objection to "digital transformation" hype as it is framed such as to de-emphasize the role of humans.

@dredmorbius @strypey

Just the mere words "digital transformation" imply we must transition to digital spaces, use tech just for the sake of using it.

But tech should be supportive to humans, empowering us while staying as unobtrusive as possible.

Maybe "digital alignment" or "human(e) alignment" might be better when talking about objectives where tech should be headed.

But "digital transformation" sells better and comes with many huge corporate IT projects that are shoved down our throat.

@dredmorbius @strypey

Digital transformation maps real well on 'being disruptive' and 'move fast and break things'. And the sales pitch goes a bit like: "We all wanna avoid those clumsy manual procedures. Digital [just] increases efficience, raises productivity, hence saves costs, raises ROI, and should thus be a no-brainer".

And with budgets being strained everywhere that is a powerful lure, especially for people not aware of the technical complexity and inevitable side-effects that'll come.

@dredmorbius @strypey

Regarding framing I am really digging terminology such as #SmallTech #SlowTech #CalmTech etcetera.

Just starting with these in any quest for improvements will immediately help improve the mindset with which the problems are analysed and tackled.

@dredmorbius @strypey

It's interesting to read these words and analyze how they affect your frame of mind.

If you're in tech maybe you are now rushed , stressed, overwhelmed, have a huge backlog of TODO's, plans, deadlines you set for yourself or placed upon you.

Now read each of these words slowly and reflect a bit on them:

- Small tech
- Slow tech
- Calm tech

Did they put you more at ease? Can you look differently on what you do today? Does it allow different perspective?

It does to me.

@humanetech Isn't this largely what all technology promises?

How do you ensure that tech stays small / slow / calm?

Promises are ... cheap.

Delivery is more formidable.


@dredmorbius @humanetech @strypey Yeah and a lot of people tend to think of software as dead/broken if it didn't have some kind of recent code/release activity.

While if you think of things where the environment barely evolves and that have a defined scope, they just shouldn't need any more releases except for bugfixes and the rare changes in the environment.

> a lot of people tend to think of software as dead/broken if it didn't have some kind of recent code/release activity.

Guity as charged, but it's a fair rule of thumb. Dead software does fit this description and given the constant changes in surrounding software, it's a rare user-facing program that doesn't require regular work to keep up. If there's no sign of any such work being done, and no reply from maintainers on any available project channel ...

@humanetech @dredmorbius

@strypey @humanetech @dredmorbius Having no replies is the correct indicator of decreasing/non-existent maintainance.
But lack of activity otherwise? Nah.
Things like a text editor likely requires few updates if any and system utilities often require none once they have been written and stabilized.
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