Having read the article Everything’s broken and nobody’s upset by Scott Hanselman, it prompted me to write this, which has been bubbling away for a little while now.
Yes, I agree that there are many issues with our industry. Many things don’t work as seamlessly as they could / should.
However, in defence of our industry, I hold up the following:
1. Way, way back in the late 1980’s, I got my first dot-matrix printer, a Star LC-10, which I hooked up to my Atari ST. It, at the time, amazed me that I could make the printer (a physical device, with moving bits) do stuff just by simply typing on a keyboard. It was a long time ago, and I’m not so easily impressed now.
2. In the mid 1990’s, when I was at University, I was able to chat with a course mate over the internal systems (VAX-VMS), and arrange to meet them outside the building to go for a pint. Again, this was interaction with the real world.
3. A couple of months ago, having changed my car to a VW Golf, and the first car I’ve ever had with Satnav , I was able to save myself 2 hours sitting in traffic, when the Satnav dynamically changed my route based on traffic conditions. I had never been convinced about the need for Satnav, since I was ‘capable of reading a map’. However, following this, I’m a complete convert.
4. A month or so back, I met up with a guy from the UK, over in Seattle. He’d requested some chocolate be brought over, and since I was going over for a course, I took it. This was completely arrange over Twitter.
5. A few weeks ago, having spent a few days in London on a project, I was able to use my iPad, and it’s 3G connection to access a website to order a Curry, which heading home on the train. Then having left the train, and stopped at the curry house on the way back home, the curry was ready and waiting for me.
6. We’ve sent a huge robot to another Planet, ok, it’s a mildly depressed robot, but still !
You can see that there is a common theme in my examples, interaction with the real world. All of these items continue to make me impressed with what my industry has achieved.
Thank you, and please continue to impress me.