In the spring of 1993, my experiences as a hardware and software engineer collided with the art world as an installation in Kyoto benefitting from the educational direction of edutech pioneer Nobuyuki Ueda. Having worked for too long in the abstract world of electricity and cyberspace, I hungered to see it made real, in order to understand it better. Thus was born the Human Powered Computer Experiment, which was “performed” by Dr. Ueda’s graduate students in a two-day long workshop where human beings embodied the working components of a computer.
At the time computers still had disk drives, so the entire system started up by turning on a power switch, and then placing a giant cardboard disk into a slot through a partition. On one side of the divider sat the computer user; the other half was for the human-powered computation to happen. The performance area spanned two floors of empty space so that visitors could view what was occurring on both sides at the same time. …
Normally I send out my CX Briefings via Mailchimp, but I changed phones and didn’t keep my authenticator app settings so I am temporarily locked out. So I decided to get this #CX Briefing briefing out by Medium instead :+).
To true Bowie fans out there, I’m embarrassed to admit that I didn’t really discover Bowie until he passed away in 2016 — so instead I’ve been lucky to get to do a lot of catching up over the last five years.
There are two video interviews with Bowie where his power to speak both machine and human are in stunning view. One happened in the 80s, during a conversation with a rising media startup called “MTV”. In the interview, Bowie criticized MTV for excluding Black artists. (At the time, it did.) The other occurred over a decade later, when Bowie was interviewed by the BBC. He described the Internet in terms that can be eerily recognized today in 2020. Rather than reading about these videos, it’s best to go off and experience them at the source. …
At the time, Automattic was the largest tech company operating fully remote, or more precisely “fully distributed,” and my good fortune led me to joining Matt Mullenweg’s prescient organization. As the pandemic has worn on, I have found that many of the “new” WFH tips that get shared today were pioneered long ago by Automattic. Things like the difference between the politics of a workforce that is partially distributed versus 100% distributed — the latter being the more effective option. And the fact that “asynchronous” unmonitored working is better than three-hour “synchronous” Zoom calls where showing presence is a requirement — but the former requires a great deal of trust that most bosses aren’t willing to easily extend. …
Context of now: Especially given the recent news of the Breonna Taylor decision, I believe that listening to the next generation of leaders is critical today for people of my generation and above. The world we once lived in where excluding others based upon their differences was the default and accepted practice—is something that will need to materially change. If more senior leaders actively make room for more underrepresented voices, businesses will more responsibly manage their transformation during this 4th Industrial Revolution. The world is watching.
When I joined Publicis Sapient, Fast Company ran a story about how I joined to help established companies compete in their digital transformation journey. If you’ve seen Netflix’s The Social Dilemma, and also as was the topic of my book How To Speak Machine, the Big Tech companies have an outsized amount of power. To spend a year with my partners and colleagues across every industry vertical working with some of the biggest names in the world on the trendy topic of “digital business transformation” — I can see that we all have our work cut out for us to compete against Big Tech. …
Sponsored by The Earth
Are Made By Those Who
Know How To Speak Machine
If your customer experience feels like your org chart, that means you’re successfully running at scale. As a business (and as a human), the more important thing is to consider the implications of “the other CX”: Computational Experiences. They’re powered by Moore’s Law, they’re made by the few who know how to speak machine, and as humanity accelerates towards a “Kardashev 5” scale of digital transformation we should be both excited and terrified.
The CX Report will gather trends related to how business happens through computational experiences. It began as five years of the “Design in Tech Report” and its scope is being broadened to cover the larger surface of digital business transformation activities happening around the world.
There’s a 12-question survey that closes on March 18, 2020. If you participate there’s an option to put your name into the final report.
March 19: Part 1 of the CX Report centering around Distributed (“Remote”) Work will be released. …
Also available on my WordPress site over here.
If you’d like to get my monthly #CX Briefing sign up here to get it in your inbox first.
* The word “design” is a curious one because it’s a known word to C-suite executives, client service folks, industry analysts, front-end developers, back-end developers, empowered product managers, disempowered product managers, management consultants, brand strategists, agile project managers, and also the folks who call themselves “designers.”
* There’s a varying degree of importance ascribed to the word “design” because, like all words, it means something different depending upon who is using the word and *when* it’s being used in the process of creating value for a customer, client, user, patient, constituent, buyer, seller, and any of the organizational roles I mentioned just above. …
* The difference between CX and design is useful to ponder because it helps to separate outcome from process.
* There are experiences that can be wholly crafted by a lone professional designer like with a one-off poster or chair.
* But for projects that are more complex than a lamp, a product will get made with and by many non-designers on their way to market.
* When professional designers are less involved, it’s easy to create “bad design.” But it can still be considered good CX. …