Thursday, 9 March 2006

Finished Products are no more!

by David Warlick

I really like David's description about the change of value between the industry era and current generation. In the old days, things were built as a finished product and to last. Things built to serve a designed purpose. Today, we use paper cups, plastic fork and knives, disposal chopsticks. Children also make artwork using paper plates and stuff. (OK, I did use a hammer to hit a screw in, and making paper plate artwork has been here for quite some time.) What David has point out is the fundamental change of the concept of finished products. For digital products definitely, there is NO FINISHED products. If a vendor does not continually "maintain" a piece of software, it is for all practical purpose considered dead. "Maintain" is fitting parts which are faulty, not due to use because there is no metal fatigue in software - faulty because of incomplete design in the first place.

David also introduces us to the concept of "mesh up", missing different things (media as an example) to produce new thing. Information is one of those which can be slice and dice easily using information technology - namely tools such as computer.

In developed countries, we have developed beyond just fulfilling our basic biological needs. Too much food IS a problem. The jobs are created to cater higher order needs such as entertainment, self-fulfilment, satisfaction etc. As such, the vast majority of job will be to satisfy these higher order needs - looking more pretty, entertainment, etc. If this "mixing" is becoming a social norm, jobs will be created around satisfying this need.

In a way, this is a self-fulfilling prophecy. The current generation of young people are generating the need and they will therefore generate jobs to meet that need.

As educator, what should we do?

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