Friday, March 22, 2013

Websites in Reverse

Once, websites were destinations. Users would interrupt what they were doing, go to a website, determine what action needed to be taken where, and accomplish a task. Website were a means to an end.

Designers struggled constantly with arcane rules, dashboards, coding, and competing demands from the people paying for the website. The overall idea was "design it, optimize it, update it" with limited information and feedback.

Now, users no longer have to interrupt what they are doing to accomplish tasks. Computer applications intercede at the exact moment a user is making a decision, and provide customized solutions tailored to that exact user. Users no longer need websites.

Designers program applications to do exactly one thing perfectly. The user responses are all that's needed to design, optimize, and update. The user determines how an application needs to behave, not the people paying for it. Applications are an end with no need for a means.  Designers no longer need websites.

Monday, December 10, 2012

R&D in Reverse

Research and Development of new products and services used to be a secretive task performed in-house with the hope of bringing something to an unknowing market in time to recoup costs before it was inevitably copied by a competitor.

Now, R&D is open, crowd-sourced, and collaboratively designed in public. The market knows it's coming, and because they are co-developers, don't want a knock-off version from a competitor.

Eventually, brands will be known as mere catalysts, bringing sets of individual desires into reality as they embody and empower the collective thoughts of their customers.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Public Relations in Reverse

Companies used to send press releases to media outlets in the hope of getting a story or mention so that they would have one-way access to the media outlet's audience. The media outlet would provide a third-party endorsement/denouncement of the brand by its inclusion.

Now, companies send press releases and opportunities directly to everyone in these audiences, engaging in two-way conversations. Everyone is now a publisher with the ability to endorse/denounce a brand.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Products in Reverse

Products today are mass produced, anonymous, and disposable. Their impact on the environment, on health, on workers, and on quality is all but ignored. They're made all over the world and sold wholesale for the cheapest price possible, with the hope they'll be bought multiple times by the same person.

Soon, products will again be made locally by individuals, and sold directly to you by people you may know personally. Everything previously ignored -- environment, health, workers, quality -- will not be ignored, but celebrated. They'll be bought once, and last for generations.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Companies in Reverse

Once, there were companies and consumers. Companies were monolithic, faceless, and bureaucratic. Employees were cogs in the machine, with no personality, loyalty, nor exposure to the public. Consumers' only duty was to consume; otherwise the company had no interest in them.

Soon, consumers will be valued as individuals, with interests other than consuming a particular product. Employees will be valued for their ability to directly connect with consumers as individuals, using their stories to attract more consumers, and creating a tribe of individuals that rally around what the company sells as a launching pad for exploring other aspects of their lives.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Employees in Reverse

Employers used to find talent anywhere and physically move them to where it was most convenient to the employer. Employees were expected to drop their gender, their parenthood, and their personalities from their workplace behavior. They were expected to dress a certain way and in every way become more like their employer and coworkers. If an employee had to talk to the public, their language would be scripted and stilted.

Soon, employees will be in control. Their ability to work anywhere, gender, parenthood, and personality will be what is valued. Their employers will become more like them. When they talk to the public it will be them speaking.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Computers in Reverse

Computers once took up entire floors of buildings, with lab-coated technicians catering to their every whim. They served the machine. Computer interfaces were extremely difficult to communicate with, essentially making all users programmers.

Computers are now so small they fit in your pocket or ear, and are essentially disposable. Computers will be even more ubiquitous soon: in your refrigerator, on the recycling bin, on your trash can, even in your toilet, monitoring your health. The machine will serve us. Computer interfaces will be so easy to use that children, the elderly -- anyone of any ability -- will easily communicate with them.