Aside: Work Progress Administration

They say when you can’t do what you want, do what you’re good at.  And there’s always a bright future in computer maintenance.  It’s kind of like this:

I want to be a mediator, but it’s slow starting, so I’m back to computer work.  No, I’m not giving up the mediation, but working in a law office for low wages is driving me insane and eating my soul, so I’m thinking about a change in secondary careers.  Interestingly, Phaedrus (the philosopher) became the technical writer Pirsig (working on computers at the time he wrote Zen & The Art…)

Anyway, I was just thinking (again) today about all my friends who ended up doing computer work.  My friend Marty, a musician, got a PhD in computer science.  Her brother, Otto, my college roommate, studied philosophy at the Universities of Chicago and Minnesota, and became a programmer.  I have a friend, David, an avid cyclist who works designing web pages.

And here I am, mediator, ex-law student, ex-sociologist.  And, of course, ex-software engineer.  😉

I first started playing with computers when I was in Junior High, some time in the early 1970s.  Got my first machine in 1984.  Became a computer professional around 20 years ago.  And here I am again!

What amazes me is how little effort, in the past 40 years, people have invested in learning to use computers rather than to be used by computers.  In a very real way, we have become prisoners of our own devices.

We now return you to your irregularly scheduled Chautauqua.

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