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Genevieve Hudak

DLC Ė Analysis: Hw 15

1. what did you find
1.1. interesting about the article?

I found the difference between what people thought the technology could do compared to what actually happened very interesting. It seems as though people expect more from the technology than they actually should.

I find it worrisome that attempts were made so soon to have the technology take over from the traditional office environment. I think after some time, technology may in fact evolve to a point where this kind of thing would be much more successful. But currently, I think we know still so little about what role collaboration plays in the work place, that this venture was destined to fail.

1.2. not interesting about the article?
None.

2. what do you consider the main message of the article?

I think the main message of the article was that technology cannot replace a collaborative work environment, and that informal learning is very important and seems to only take place when people are physically located next to each other (but not always in this case either).

I think the article was also saying that technology cannot replace the structure that the traditional work environment provides. In the example of the Chiat/Dayís problem, they tried to remove the structure that placing people at their own desks was, and this caused disaster.

Finally, I think the article addressed the issue that people underestimate how much the technology will cost.

3. what does the following quote mean to you: "design needs to attend not simply to the frailty of technological systems and the robustness of social systems, but to ways in which social systems often play a key part in making even frail technology robust"

The quote to me means that people in a collaborative group are good at overcoming problems with technology because they have other people to rely on when things go wrong. The quote is suggesting that good design realizes this and takes advantage of it.

3.1. why are social systems robust?

Social Systems are robust because people have more confidence and are more willing to deal with problems when they are surrounded by other people that can either help solve their problems or have the same ones. Social systems are also robust because people are used to relying on other people.

3.2. why are technological system frail?

Technological systems are frail because they arenít always designed well. Also, during design and testing, some things could be deemed Ďusableí but actually arenít. The people whoís job rely on things working right, nudge the tester to do the right thing, so a real test of usability is not truly performed.

4. think of a couple of persons (maybe family members or friends) who are in a position to use computer by being "home alone"! Characterize the major problems that these persons have!

My dad can and does work home alone sometimes. The problems he has is that other people in the office cannot go looking for him to get help, and then they donít call him, and sometimes the problems donít get reported until they have gotten much worse.

5. Describe briefly some new innovative technologies that you can think of which would address these problems!

It would be cool to design a communication system that leverages existing phone and internet technology to set up virtual face-to-face environments. Consider having little monitors of other people working, so it creates a virtual office where all the benefits of a traditional office setting can be taken advantage of.

6. in case of problems with computer systems ?how often to you look for help/advice
6.1. from humans?

Almost always

6.2. from written documentation?

Sometimes.

6.3. from online resources?

Frequently

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