@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.
@tfb @loke @clacke @tindall at the same time, you have to accommodate people who want to use the technology without understanding it. I have spent the better part of thirty years successfully avoiding the command line, and it bothers me immensely that not only has it become necessary to do my job when I have otherwise planned my career around not needing it, but I also feel constantly judged for my life choices.
@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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