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The cunning of reason

It strikes me that most of the pervasive technologies we use every day are not being used for their intended purpose, such that they have major limitations:

  • Cell phones were meant to be a supplemental phone, not your sole phone line. As a result, it has a major limitation: it’s tough to make phone calls inside of buildings, which if you think about it is mostly where you want to place calls.
  • Twitter was meant to be a text-message broadcast service, not a mini-blogging service. As a result, it can only support messages of 140 characters (to fit within the limits of a text message and leave room for the username), doesn’t support any kind of robust tracking of conversations, etc., etc.
  • Blogging was meant to be a link-aggregation thing, not a platform for original writing and conversation. As a result, the text editor for most blogging formats is literally just a plain-text box within a browser and the format of comment sections continually fails to catch up to what was available to people back in the Usenet days. (Trackback is lame, even though I do support the idea of encouraging people to respond in the context of their own blog posts if they have more than just a quick comment or clarification.)
  • Sex was initially developed as a way of diversifying the gene pool and contributing to more robust natural selction, not as a way of developing deep and life-defining emotional connections. As a result, we have human society as we know it.

October 5, 2010 - Posted by | innovative technologies that shape our lives

1 Comment

  1. Given the last entry in this list, shouldn’t this post also be in the “how’s that working out for you—being clever?” category?

    Comment by ben | October 5, 2010

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