Bob Stein Lecture

Bob Stein reinforced the point that Noah Feehan made at New York Times about the importance of analyzing interaction with their articling system. He said we need to look at the past in order to grow and succeed in the future. Bob Stein also said that a better understanding of history equals a better future. He introduced us to a powerful concept that truth is several information gathered from a collective of people. This is used when competing ideas are presented. The digital age, where information is accessed by all, allows the age of the collective, where everyone contributes. More people are included in this conversation of truths, changing age old standards into a flexible, contributable wealth of knowledge with websites like Wikipedia.

Bob Stein also introduced us to the Mother of all Demos, a revolutionary operating system with a format and applications like none seen before. This OS used many different kinds of user input that hadn’t been used together creating the powerful format we use today. The Mother of all Demos enabled people to do many of the same tasks, such as video-conferencing, and document editing. Even the mouse we use today was first unveiled at the Mother of all Demos in 1968. I found this demonstration especially fascinating because I’d often wondered how exactly we got to computers today from the archaic computers from decades ago.

The debate the class had had some interesting topics. I agree with the observance that technology should be available specially designed for non-adept people, many of whom may be part of the older generation. I perceived today’s interface as simplistic, so I had not imagined how it could be complex for an older generation. I did notice this when visiting my grandmother, who has long been able to use her email. However when sending an email on a tablet, she cannot recognize the same symbols used to send emails. From this I can guess that she can’t identify new or similar symbols as easily, which is understandable since the tablet is filled with them. I can also see why many people spite change in general so much. I know for sure that large words would be more useful to her on her tablet, though that would be ugly in today’s design standards and so would never be done. Hopefully we can change this, and develop ways we can help older generations and let them enjoy the freedom the internet offers- after all, they are our biggest population and we will join them someday.