Technology Making Work Less Stressful Or More Stressful?

from the it's-all-in-the-interface dept

While there have been lots of talk about how computers and technology are causing problems in the workplace, on the whole, it appears that people are pretty happy with new technologies. A new study shows that, for many people, information technology has made their jobs less stressful. Of course, it depends on job function and what you’re using the technology for. In the manufacturing world, people were thrilled with how much easier technology made their lives. However, for those working in finance, they found the technology increased their stress level. In a related story, a writer talks about how distracting his computer is from getting any real work done. However, instead of just blaming the technology, he points out that the real problem is that computers don’t work all that well. We’re always wasting time trying to fix some sort of problem, rather than just doing work. He suggests it doesn’t have to be this way, and points to TiVo as a computer that has a working interface that makes you forget it’s a computer. Of course, the reason for that is that it’s designed to do a specific task. Computers are so open, that they’re designed to do any task – including bad ones. So, perhaps the future of computing is one that involves more specific purpose devices – and less focus on general purpose machines. The problem with that idea, though, is people like general purpose machines because it lets them expand and keep up with the times by simply installing additional software. Perhaps the future is a hybrid, where certain special purpose machines (like TiVo) dominate in certain areas, but people use general purpose machines for everything else.

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