The Power to Do More

Every time I see this, I wonder if it shouldn't be the exact opposite.

Nobody sells the dishwasher promising people that now, finally, they can do more dishes.

The washing machine rumbling in my basement means me doing less laundry on a washboard by the river.

The Nest thermostat promises I won't ever have to touch a thermostat again.

Roomba takes doing out of vacuuming.

Has there been an ad for the iPhone where people have a phone conversation?  Since I got mine in 2007, my phone bill has been averaging about three voice minutes per day, for which I am forever grateful. Tweeting, Facebooking and messaging have replaced the hard stuff.

I am struggling to think of a single thing I would want to do more of on a computer.

I would like to be sending fewer emails. I also would like having to delete fewer of them. I would like for a computer to notice if I keep deleting something without reading.

I like taking pictures, but I would like to spend less time organizing and retouching them.

I don't want to do more Excel formulas. I want to type in "how likely are people who peel bananas from the handle end to have red hair and two kids", and get an answer without having to do more pivots, smart filters, regressions, or whatever.

First I thought I would definitely like to play computer games more. Then I thought of all the games I quit in mid-level because of how inflexibly, frustratingly and randomly difficult for my inferior thumb reflexes they would eventually become.  It would be nice if games could sense my frustration and lower their guard a bit and let me through. It would be nice if a game would just let me play it my way instead of insisting that I do what feels a lot like work.

Hey, computer!  It's your memory that doubles every two years while mine probably degrades at about the same rate. So I think you should be doing more.

What I would like for myself is the power to do less.