Technological innovation is a GOOD THING. Well, quite often it is.

I’m sure you may have seen articles bemoaning the particular NEGATIVE role that technological innovation advancement has played inside our lives. I have recently became a member of the ranks of those doing it bemoaning.


Rarely get me wrong-I’m any tech guy through and through. We have chosen to work in the technological innovation industry for 20 years, and that i love gadgets as well as the subsequent guy. I’ve got TIVO, a laptop, a cellular phone, Wi-Fi, all the standard Economical fare. I’m an email fan. With great anticipation Im eyeing Home Theater equipment; merely waiting for prices to drop a tad bit more and for standards to settle somewhat. I love many of the things that technological innovation does to enrich our private lives, and embrace the particular productivity improvements that it gives doing business. And I believe that individuals who create new technologies and also products ALMOST ALWAYS have very good intentions, from a societal point of view.


But I also believe that legal issues of unintended consequences will be alive and thriving inside the technology marketplace. In producing products and services that didn’t earlier exist in our world, the favorable is sometimes offset (and from time to time overwhelmed) by effects around the negative side of the journal.

Take automobiles, for example. Undoubtedly cars are no longer an example of new-technology. But at the turn of the particular century, they represented one of the best leaps forward in technological innovation, and have had wide-ranging, optimistic societal effects. Autos offered a completely different level of private mobility, with too many results on our daily lives to be able to list. For businesses, the enhanced enterprise productivity was so huge that it not only lowered fees, but also allowed totally new organizations to be conceived. Autos as well as the internal combustion engine that will enabled them are genuinely among the great inventions in history.

However , do you think the brains or the internal combustion powerplant and the automobile had the particular foresight to envision the amount of polluting of the environment this invention has in the end created? Not to mention the varieties of greenhouse gas effect, that is in fact causing significant warming to global climate, with probably devastating consequences?

Of course , they will couldn’t. I think this should result in those of us in the technology biz to pause and mirror a bit.


There are many more innovations you can list having major downsides associated with great leaps forwards. Cell Phones are another these kinds of example. They have provided any leap forward in society that although not quite as profound as motor vehicles, approaches the same level. They have provided great productivity profits for businesses, and have allowed people to stay connected in our private lives like never before. Yet haven’t they also contributed in a negative way to our ability to get away, unwind, and enjoy some uninterrupted privateness? I feel this has been a big bad for society, and it may be one of those steps that possibly can’t be undone.

I think the particular most driven Type A’s among us believe that human beings will need at least SOME time to charge our batteries. Just to get far from it all and relax. Scientific advancements have connected people to the extent that it may be very hard to do that. You was once able to take a vacation or a day time off, and honestly point out you didn’t have a telephone or an Internet connection obtainable. If you say that now, folks might begin to question your current veracity. It’s possible to get connected nearly everywhere-as an end result, it becomes less acceptable than in the past be “disconnected”.

This leads to the largest complaint I have about the accidental consequences of the technology innovation:

The general speeding up of our lifestyles.

I’m exhausted–I’ll bet you happen to be too For context, a lot of people would consider me a sort A personality. So this isnt the complaint of several mellow, laid-back surfer guy. I generally embrace an instant paced life, and specifically enjoy the ability to make development in business in a rapid-fire make a difference. But honesty compels myself to admit that, occasionally, the pace of modern existence even overwhelms me.

I actually live out the most gnawing sort of this “Acceleration” of our lifestyles every day on the freeways regarding Southern California. I live in Together with, which granted is a huge city. And big city targeted traffic has, of course , never recently been much fun. But San Diego isnt New York or Paris simply by any stretch of the creativeness, when it comes to congestion, or the perceptions of the locals. So I rarely think I’m reaching for the ultimate here.

Compared to even 10-15 years ago, life on the freeways has become hell. I am a fairly fast driver, but around the freeway, it’s never quickly enough. No matter how fast you need to go, there is always someone approaching fast upon you-tailgating and also itching to get past an individual. And it isn’t enough to be able to get around you. The guys inside the BMW 3 series must accelerate and weave to send and receive of traffic like it may be the 20th lap from LeMans.

Those guys have got always existed on the highway, an individual say. And you’re proper. But the lack of common sense and also courtesy seems to have spread through the driver-sphere like a bad winter flu. These days, you try to move to a lane in front of any soccer mom in a large SUV at your own danger. She may be toting a couple of kids in the back, and naturally is talking on her cellular phone (those cell phones again! ). But she’s also found that LeMans mentality, with zero way she’s going to purposely concede that position-let only the extra ten feet regarding highway to a “competitor”.

I actually find it especially ironic how a technology acceleration has made additional pieces of useful technology out of date. My favorite is how the speedup on the freeways has eradicated the need for what was once a vital piece of safety technology regarding drivers: the indicator. That no longer serves a useful goal on the road. Should you put your current indicator on before transforming lanes in front of that sports mom? Ten years ago you should have. But 2005 sports mom puts the palanca to the medal and reduces you off to prevent from “moving up a spot” in the unofficial Freeway LeMans. These days, using this once crucial technology now only “indicates” to everyone else that it may be time speed up to prevent from making that lane alter! God forbid you need to be able to that lane to exit the particular highway; that next get out of better suffice if you rarely want to risk a crash. Sports moms don’t glare to the visitor on that page menacingly while doing although cutting you off just like the guys in the BMW a few series will, but the result is just the same. It’s a new world out there.

So what’s the particular takeaway to this rant?


Again, I believe that the law regarding unintended consequences is hard at the job. There is a big market getting created that while not entirely ignored, is underserved. Honestly, that is the market for enabling our live to slow back down. Rarely misunderstand. I don’t mean “giving us more time in the day”. That time generated by productivity-enhancing devices seems to just load back up with more frenetic exercise. I mean actually slowing people down, so we can re-charge to sprint another day. This could be a difficult concept regarding companies to get their forearms around, so that they can create new items and services to cash in on it. But business creation and product creation surrounding this theme would be really groundbreaking, and potentially very satisfying.

So the next time you’re sitting down on the side of the road using a flat tire-and a dead cellular phone battery- write me a take note. Assuming your wireless Internet relationship is still up. I’d want to get your thoughts.