Making work like video games

I was raising teen and pre-teen kids when the video game craze first hit. Atari, Mario, all those. The worry among parents was whether or not video games would ruin kids, make them uneducated bums, fat blobby couch potatos who live their lives in imaginary world behind heavy curtains. Well, that picture is true–for some kids. And balance was always necessary. But I remember discussing this at the time with other parents and saying that as much as video games have been embraced by this generation, it will change things forever. Work will be structured like games, we will fight wars with joy sticks and video screens, entertainment will more and more interactive. Trust me, I did say those things.

Well the picture of war being waged with joysticks and screens has certainly become a reality–all the talk these days is about drones, robots, and the like. And entertainment certainly has changed. Games themselves have proven a huge competitor for tv and the movies, but more importantly, it is getting hard to tell what is a game and what is mass entertainment. All the big shows these days have a strong interactive element–and many of the games are getting more filmic.

What about work. This article from the NYT highlights how software designers are designing software to operate like video games.  It’s come slower than warfare and entertainment, but it looks like game-inspired work is here.

What does it mean for crisis managers. Well, I see a link to a previous comment about how many professional communicators continue to have their head in the sand about the blog world, social media and how the Internet has forever changed public information. They think their world still revolves around the major media and what they write in their newspapers or air on local tv. It’s not. “And a child shall lead them…” Actually, a generation of tech savvy, Internet-fed, technophiles shall lead them. And us old foges–we just better figure out how to survive in this new world.