In the 20th century, we learned how to move atoms. We got so good at it that just about anybody in our part of the world can now get just about any atoms they want, just about any time they want them.
Economic performance is thus becoming more of a question of form than it is of quantity. Individuals and small groups have an unprecedented opportunity to generate value for themselves and others, despite a caveat: While the variable costs of doing business approach zero, the hunger for innovation places unprecedented demands on the creative and problem-solving capacities of these people.
Commerce, however, is still heavily couched in industrial-age language, clumsily attempting to do business around activities that are wholly post-industrial. Are we actually solving these problems, or are we trying to shoehorn results into Procrustean parameters to satisfy employers, clients or investors at our own expense and ultimately theirs?
It is said that artists starve, so I chose computers instead. Since I began my career in 1999, I’ve done everything from system administration to graphic design to writing web apps and big-data business intelligence systems. There are a few epithets that describe my body of expertise, but the nice one is “self-directed learner”. I hung up my spurs as a security developer near the end of 2007 to integrate what I had learned programming with what I am learning in user experience design, business and management, and to set about tackling what I believe are some serious problems addling the increasingly important business of realizing software.