Why We Have Not Changed With Technology

[insights] Posted by lemur47 on 6 September 2023

We've been trained and convinced by the civilisation to believe that we're constantly evolving with technology. But the reality is very different.

It was 20 years since I started working in the IT industry. I've been freelancing for more than half of my career, and I first started working remotely in 2003, so I'm now very familiar with working from home and have figured out how to work effectively from home without being distracted.

And I've noticed that people still work the same way as 20 years ago.

From 2003 to 2006, I used MSN Messenger and IRC for work. When I needed to communicate with project members (they were also my client), I used multi-channel IRC. We sometimes developed a simple bot for IRC with some Perl scripts for logging and auto replies.

For one-to-one communication, I used MSN Messenger, including file transfer. And there were no social media, we used ICQ for international communication.

And I built a home Linux server for multiple purposes - ADSL router, mail server, database server, virus detection, web server, etc. And for blogging, I installed MovableType on my server. And all new emails are forwarded from my server to my flip phone, so I never missed a thing.

From 2006 to 2009, I used Jabber and IRC for work, both in the office and at home. To access the environment, we used Jabber over TLS, IRC over SSH port forwarding, and remote desktop with SSH port forwarding.

And very unfortunately, my flip phone was filled with tons of emails from the system and projects. I had to deal with over 200 emails a day. Because I was managing 10 projects at the same time. The environment and the working culture made me really sick.

From 2003 to 2015, I sometimes used SSH tunnels to secure the network between a server in the data centre and my desktop. When I first moved to the Southeast Asia, I used a home-made VPN server in the cloud to have access local banks and streaming services, as well as the cloud environment of a startup company.

The same approach is used in the current environment. Almost nothing changes.

In fact, the technology and tools have evolved. NoCode and LowCode products are so helpful not only for citizen developers, but also for techies. AI also helps us get things done efficiently. But the working culture and the way people work haven't changed.

More recently, in 2023, we now use Slack, Teams or Discord instead of IRC. Some organisations may use Jabber or other messaging apps instead of MSN Messenger.

Bloggers use WordPress and other solutions, but techies concerned with both privacy and security may choose Hugo or another JAMStack with Git as an alternative to WordPress or MovableType.

In the abstract, nothing changes.

So let me ask you a few simple questions here. Do you have more time than you did 20 years ago? Do you feel as comfortable with technology for your well-being? Are you relatively free from the state of enslavement compared to 2003?

I assume that your answer is NO.

Technology alone doesn't make us happy. This civilisation has so lost the balance between ourselves and the outside world. We've relied too much on things that we can't control. As a result, we've created a deceptive dystopia on Terra.

Now, it's time to wake up to the truth.

And I've been thinking for years that it's time to quit working in the IT industry. And I've experimented a lot. But I still don't know what to do next.