My Thoughts on Technology and why we use it

I’ve spent the last few weeks thinking about what technology means to me. Is it to make my job easier? To get more done in the same period of time? Or do I just do it to feel like I’m connected to others?

I find myself using technology for number of different things – I communicate over email quite a bit, I research on my handheld and my desktop when I’m at work, I coordinate different people and events as well as publish what I do in my personal life and business ventures. Overall I think technology has a purpose and a place. With that said I feel it’s very important to put it down sometimes. To reconnect with the people around us, to build things out of the things in the real world, sculpture, painting or maybe even landscaping. The point is technology does have a place in our world and keeping the balance between the artificial world we’ve created for ourselves online and the real world we are living in and the people we interact with on a daily basis are just as important.

Overall I think we all have a lot to learn in managing our day-to-day lives with and without technology.  We need to find ways to enhance what we do without becoming dependent on any one thing. Becoming technology neutral is something we should all strive to practice more. Find ways to utilize technology without being used by technology.  As we go into the holiday season take time to handwrite a thank you to someone. Drop it in the mail or better yet create your own thank you card. Take the time to think about the message, find a picture that relays some kind of emotion connected with your message.  Take it to a quick serve printer or big box store and then use that to once again connect with your friends, family and coworkers.

Designed to reinforce technology

Designed to reinforce technology

Designed to reinforce technology – Are your Google Ad Words or Facebook advertising campaigns performing as well as you planned? If not, have you evaluated the creative (images/ad copy) you are using to drive the campaign? Often, businesses try to cram so much information into one small ad it creates a very confusing and hard to read ad that customers just ignore.

Here are some simple steps you can take, which will help you maximize your advertisements impact:

Step 1. MESSAGE: What is the one most important point you are you trying to make? Step 2. AUDIENCE: Who are you speaking to? Step 3. VEHICLE. Is your desired audience using the advertising platform you have chosen? Answering these simple questions may seen obvious, however more often than not, in the rush to meet ad deadlines, we sometimes miss the most essential point of advertising in the first place. Who we’re trying to advertise to and what are we trying to say. Remember the K.I.S.S. rule: “keep it simple silly.” Using pull quotes or a direct call to action statement along with an engaging image or graphic will always interrupt the reader and deliver your message more effectively.

Innovate or disintegrate – why keeping current with technology is a must, Featured on SRQ DAILY: TUESDAY April 5, 2016 – TUESDAY TECH TALK

Innovate or disintegrate – why keeping current with technology is a must

Innovate or disintegrate – I had the opportunity to attend an event in March regarding empathetic design presented by The CEO Forum and BIG (Big Ideas on the Gulfcoast) guest speakers Dr. Deena McDonagh and Walter Herbst. Dr. McDonagh is an Associate Professor of Industrial Design in the School of Art + Design at the University of Illinois (Urbana-Champaign) and faculty at the Beckman Institute of Advanced Science and Technology. Mr. Herbst founded Herbst LaZar Bell Inc. in 1962 which has grown into one three largest independently owned product design and development firms in the country.

The two focused their talk on the growing emphasis technology usability plays in the consumer marketplace. What I found most compelling was learning how our assumptions and design concepts are being put to the test. Dr. McDonagh shared a few very interesting case studies including everything from how we use a roll of toilet paper to how we tattoo ourselves with brands like Harley Davidson.

She emphasized in one of her examples that it was clear the designers were men and the women’s perspective was never taken into consideration in designing the product. She went on to illustrate how the product was useful and well intended but the lack of understanding and efficacy for the user in the design and implementation of the concept left quite a few people with the inability to fully use the technology as it was intended.