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If the computer was invented today, would it have a keyboard?
I’ve heard this argument come up a lot in technology programs. It usually goes... “Real computing is done with a keyboard.”
Side note: This argument is also applied to various types of software, “Real work is done in Microsoft Office.”
It’s followed by comparing the keyboard to the new alternative. The alternative is treated as a novelty, but not for serious use.
The iPad wasn’t for creating?
Google Docs was just for quick work on the go?
Talking to your computer was ridiculous?
The graphical interface was considered a novelty?
There’s a “real” way to use a computer, a “real” way to interact with a computer, or a “real” piece of software. What matters is being comfortable and able to do what you need to do.
I grew up using a computer that had a keyboard and mouse. It’s how I was most comfortable. Today, I use an iPad 90% of the time for work and use touch typing about 50% of the time (external keyboard the other half).
My sons are growing up in a world where every computer has a touch screen and a voice assistant. Their first instinct with a computer isn’t to type a command but ask it a question. When they try to find a video to watch, they don’t type in a search, they hit the microphone button and asks “Find videos of dirt bike jumps.” When they wants to use the TV one of them yells “Xbox on,” followed shortly by “Xbox Mickey Mouse.”
One of them is young enough that he’s still learning his alphabets. He could never use technology with a keyboard today. Yet he used technology everyday to interact with the world around him.
What is considered standard today, won’t be the standard tomorrow. Remember that when you are planning for the future. You’re comfort isn’t someone else’s.
If you favorite technology was invented today, what would it look like?
What was your first interaction with technology? A green screen with white text? A GUI with a mouse? A touchscreen? Voice commands? Let us know in the comments.
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