Reversing The Flow Of Innovation
My partner Brad has a good post up on the Union Square Ventures blog this morning. He's been thinking about why a lot of the innovation in information technology is happening in consumer facing web services. He notes that:
In the old days, electrical engineers focused on getting computers to work not on getting people to engage with the systems built on top of those computers. The folks that built enterprise software were vaguely aware that their systems had to be accessible to the humans that used them but they had a huge advantage. The people who used them did so as part of their job, they were trained to use them and fired if they could not figure them out.
Today, no one tells you to use Facebook. There are no employer sponsored training sessions on the use of del.icio.us. The burden is on the designer of the system to meet a need, entertain, or inform their users. They also have to seduce those users, hiding complexity, revealing one layer at time, always enticing, never intimidating, until the user one day finds they are intimately familiar with power and the pleasures of the service.
There's more and if you want to read the whole post, click here.