From smart to wise technologies

From smart to wise technologies

The last decade we seem to get overwhelmed with smart technologies. Smart watch, smart glasses, smart glove and shoe, smart bins etc. Though I truly embrace this direction I also want to be aware of the difference between smart and wise.

Today I was astonished by the remark by Ricardo Semler. He has a huge wine cellar but tries to defeat his app that suggests him what to drink next. I also have the tendency to discard what my gps suggested to take as a next route similar to what Daniele Quercia explained in TED following a different path such as a happy route. Netflix tries to get a level deeper with some suggestions of movies or series that you might like. The more an app tries to enforce us a choice the harder we try not to!

In production it is quite similar! If we know we always have to follow a specific path suggested by a computer operators will try different paths. If a machine has many unused buttons they will be tried! And so they should! An algorithm that slows down an operator or is too much sequential as a machine would perform will cause some annoyance. This algorithm can be called smart but is not wise! The Human Interface Mate strives to give freedom back to operators so they themselves can choose paths in accordance to what is expected off course.

Smart apps can become wise if the systems allows the operator to get control and the system is merely suggesting that this is one path and many others can be taken.

Instead of asking what your preferences are such as Spotify does and thus limiting the number of songs you probably will not like, you could also include a random generator that provides something completely new. The more variety and unpredictability the better in this case! Autonomation creates possibilities, automation classifies them.

The focus should not lie in determining in which category you fall but could be a bigger pattern that is being used. The bigger pattern doesn’t care about the categories but about the possible links these could have between them. The latter is what I call abstracting the problem instead of codifying it.

Being smart is knowing that a tomato is a fruit, being wise is not to put it in a fruit salad.

Don’t automate, autonomate. People matter. #wise #smart #autonomation #socialtech

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