In a new Apple commercial a young boy goes through his day with an iPad Pro doing a variety of things. At the end of the ad his mother passes by and asks, “what are you doing on your computer?” He replies, “what’s a computer?”
Poignant in its own way.
The computer traditionally created the context for work. But they no longer define our workspaces. For example, I’m typing this on an iPad Pro in the endoscopy unit using an application (trialing Bear) that syncs with my laptop and iPhone. I’ll probably finish it on my iPhone while waiting for my daughter’s dance rehearsal.
Beyond work, early computers made for gaming playscapes. Stand alone units like Xbox and mobile devices have freed us from the desk, however. Similarly, asynchronous communication before texting was desktop restricted – aka, AOL Messenger which finally shuttered this month.
The technology we use to get the job done evolves and changes. And so the next generation will not “work at the computer” or understand what that even means.
And the rage against the machine common among contemporary physicians will likely melt as the workspace for information exchange moves from the desk to something else.