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Comment Completely missing the point (Score 2, Insightful) 519

Most people in this thread are completely missing the point that has been made in the original article. I attribute this to one of two things:


The comments that have risen to the surface here have been made primarily by Digital Immigrants who have learned to adapt to their technological surroundings but have never and probably never will completely integrate those technologies with their minds. You may have a plethora of gadgets and you may administer hundreds of boxes, that does not make you a digital native.

Digital natives have been born in and have grown up in an environment where their every action, every thought has been melded with technology. Instantaneous rich interactive communication is a way of life for them and goes to their very core.
Taking a cell phone away from a teenage girl may not be physical abuse, but mentally it most certainly is. It is tantamount to locking someone into an isolation cell or taking away their faculty of speech. Not as harsh as both those conditions, but lacking the reference material, certainly it is perceived in that way.

I am a knowledge worker and I use digital technology to search, find, process, refine and publish knowledge. I need free internet access to be able to give my best and work to my peak. Not being able to IM restricts the people whose knowledge I can benefit from and with whom I can forge relations. Being behind a firewall where I can't FTP, SSH or use POP only worsens the situation and I feel crippled everyday I have to plug my laptop in at work. I resent being there any longer than I absolutely have to.

Yes, I don't need these services to do my day to day work. But to be able to express myself to the fullest and be a complete individual I most certainly do. That raises the question, has my employer hired me for the person that I am and my needs for communication or to be just another worker drone in his cubicle.

Employers would best take a page out of the Chie Happiness Officers book and take it to heart:


A Design Anthropologist's views may strike most people at Slashdot a bit odd but it probably is because she is talking with people and about people. The notions she distills are very valid and interesting if you are making systems aimed at people.

It is the people, stupid! And to the right decisions in high level design companies would be smart to get more input from the humanities.

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