@clacke @tindall I have for a long time been of the opinion that the number of people that understands technology is constant. Back in the 80's the people who understood technology and the people who used technology was roughly the same set. This led to a misbelief that using technology made you understand it.
Turns out that the cause and effect were reversed, and just like how you don't have to be a mechanic to drive a car these days, you don't have to understand technology to use it.
The notion that kids who grew up with a smartphone in their hand would understand technology like a child learns their mother's tongue is a huge, and frankly dangerous, lie that keeps being told even today. The term "digital native" is annoying me.
Just like the people who know how to design cars put things like seatbelts, crash protection, engine temperature warnings, etc into the cars to make them safe to use for people who are not mechanics, it's the duty of tech people to make the products they make safe for the users.
The tech industry is full of drug dealers only interested in peddling their dangerous wares rather than engineers that design safe products for the public's use.
@loke > Back in the 80's the people who understood technology and the people who used technology was roughly the same set. This led to a misbelief that using technology made you understand it.
In the 80's there were efforts to teach people how technology worked in order to empower them to use it well. It was fairly common for someone to start using computers for a very practical end, and to then start learning how they actually worked, because the systems were set up to facilitate that.
What we have today is cynically constructed to be impenetrable. Today's computers and today's electronics are designed to keep the user out, so it's no wonder that only a tiny, extremely motivated subset understand things. That's by design, but it's not how things need to work.
@WizardOfDocs @tfb @clacke @tindall The point I was making is not that everybody should be deep into the the technical solutions and understand everything at the lowest level. Quite the opposite in fact.
I know a lot of people who does not want to learn how to write a shellscript any more than I want to learn how to replace the drive belt in my car.
There most definitely needs to be a way for people to connect with their friends, watch videos, calculate their taxes, play videogames, manage their pictures, etc without being exploited. Today, as I believe you wanted to point out, you either have to be deep into IT to be able to do so, or you have to accept being exploited.
That said, as someone who has been programming since 1984 and is very aware of the issues with modern software I still find it difficult to do everything I need to do on the hardware I own. I can only imagine the difficulty for someone who doesn't have the same experience or interests as I do
Focus for the use and benefit. If you do math on paper instead with an electronic calculator its good to understand and remark bugs in the system. If you gain time from it for a faster progress and come back after another bug to fix or understand the function. Its good.
However todays Software try to lavish your time and squeeze your data and behavioure.
@loke @WizardOfDocs @clacke @tindall Yeah, we agree completely here. What I find so frustrating is that modern computers are just getting harder and harder to understand, and I don't think it's at all justified.
Aside from all the old programming languages of the 80's that were much more approachable than shell scripting or JS (the BASICs and Logos and Smalltalks), there was also the path not taken with Hypercard. Ordinary people did amazing things with that, and it was discoverable where you could just dig into a stack you were using as a normal user, and start figuring out how it worked of you cared to.
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