Work does not look like the office anymore We march backwards into the future
Marshall McLuhan's comment that "we look at the present in a rear-view mirror" is a reflection on how we frequently cannot comprehend the change taking place around us and try to understand it using a more familiar frame.
Benedict Evans noted that in the app store the thousands of reviews for the app, Trip Advisor, are not reviews of the app itself but of the restaurants and hotels that people visited. He also makes a hilarious observation about his own father who makes a screen capture by shooting the computer with a digital camera, removing the memory card, inserting it into the printer and printing the digital photo of the screen. The memory card is treated as if it were a roll of film.
Evans notes that "the challenge for a new thing is that you can fall into one of two traps – either you try to map it to the old mental model, or you decide that, since there is no existing model, it is useless."
It made me think about the cognitive dissonance evident in the tools we use and the places where we work. This is especially sharp in the companies where BYOD policies are in place. Employees bring powerful, connected, mobile devices to the office to then sit at desks in cubicles. The managers of the workplace can't make sense of people walking around and joining up to do their work together and at more effective settings, in more satisfying places and in different postures. Since these people must do work and work is individual and focused, they reason, an employee must sit in a standardized and assigned "workstation."
McLuhan went on to say, "We march backwards into the future."