Observing Technology Around Us

From time to time, we get a few moments to think about how technology is affecting our businesses, our lives, our society and our world as a whole. We try to speak about technology as augmenting our lives and not taking it over. Our society is shifting and changing and has become an information society. So how can we learn and adapt to new technology that is in the market place?


The best way to learn about technology is to simply observe it around you, interact with it if possible, and begin asking how it works, why it is important, if it even is. Sometimes there is a lot of self-marketing hype that surrounds new products & it can be difficult to discriminate these between disruptive technologies that society is adopting.

Start with the immediate and the technology that is within your view. We try to encourage people to interact with technology in a way that is mentally detached in general terms, meaning do not fall in love with one technology, but always use the right one for the right problem. It is a question of how we should react to technology. There are of course weapons and other technology designed to do harm, but they are really just tools. This means we try to view technology from the perspective of it being a medium and or tool, such as the Internet or television. The Internet is a network (of networks) to connect with other humans and machines, in simple terms. Basically, try not to think of it as good or bad, but work hard at gauging how we deal with it; the disruptions and positive features that come with it. So this leads us to new technologies such as the Ziosk tablet (www.ziosk.com) that is impacting restaurants and help owners gain more profit by making it easier for patrons to check out.

The Ziosk pushes self-check-out into the hands of customers. It is basically another step in the outsourcing of labor to machines. The restaurant owners that we speak with report that tips and other profits have gone up by 10-15% after the introduction of these tablets at the table. So next time you are at a Chili’s (www.chilis.com) take a look and hands on ride with one of the tablets.

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