Nature is not natural and can never be naturalized — Graham Harman

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Millennials Designing Phones or, Oh Dear

Back in the day, it was about “access to tools,” the subtitle of Steve Jobs's favorite mag.

Back in the day it was about making things simpler. One click, and a music software pops up out of OS X good enough to allow you to make music without knowing pro software...

The mouse and System whatever, versus MS DOS.

Does anyone recall hippies designing things for Generation X? Does anyone recall the elegance of that? How design was about making things simpler?

To empower people. To put power in people's hands through access to tools.

Not being told how many feet away from your car you are, as you die of a heart attack without being able to dial 911, because the touch screen is now too thin and the chip controlling it is too flimsy, and you need a compulsory passcode, and...

Remember the lock screen of the first iPhone? (Clue below.)

1 comment:

John T. Maher said...

Quite an outpouring today. This one post our yours should be expanded to an entire book.

Well, with nods to the usual suspects Heidegger and Haraway, can one not say tech is a means of enslavement while conveying a liberatory imaginary? One takes a hippie and one monetizes it and then claims the message is the opposite. Mimesis and deception. I never bought into Haraway's Cyborg in all its permutations, more and more a rehash of curious Victorian mechanical 'labor saving devices'. Aren't you getting at the root of all this? If we sell you empowerment, we have your money and you are not a tethered and dependent client with a service contract and a future projected revenue stream.

Americans seem pathologically incapable of making things simpler either in philosophy or weapons design or anything else despite the obeisance to reductionism and the scientific method as the basis of policy. There is simply no revenue in 'simple' and the term itself is ad copy for consumers nostalgic for a past which never existed.