Guest post for Orange: The Future of the Internet is Calm

The Future of the Internet is Calm

As people become more and more overwhelmed by technology, they’ll find it negatively impacts their life, getting in the way of doing great things. This is a losing proposition for the companies that employ them. As Xerox PARC researcher Mark Weiser pointed out in 1993, “we can’t design the world the same way we would for a desktop”. Twenty-two years later, we’re still focused on building technology that’s complex and code heavy, with heavy applications struggling to work on connected smartphones, despite minimal battery life and consumer attention.

This is why the insights of Weiser and Brown around calm technology, nearly two decades old, are important for us to revive and renew for our era. Calm technology aims at reducing complexity for Internet-connected devices, and compressing information into the periphery. And having dedicated the last few years of my career on the technology of place, I believe tech’s next great challenge is designing a future for calm technology.

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