Thursday, March 22, 2007

'Making the invisible visible' (MTIV)

A good arguement on the "making the invisible visible" (MTIV) debate is made by Jamais Cascio of Open The Future who takes a look at driver behaviour:

illuminating the processes and systems that are normally too subtle, complex or elusive to apprehend -- is a fundamental tool for enabling behavioral change. When you can see the results of your actions, you're better able to change your actions to achieve the results you'd prefer. I've come to understand, however, that it's not enough to make the invisible visible; you also have to make it meaningful.

The canonical example of how MTIV works is the mileage readout standard in hybrid cars. Almost invariably, hybrid owners see a gradual but noticeable improvement in miles-per-gallon over the first month or so of hybrid vehicle ownership. This isn't so much the car being "broken in," but the driver: because of the mileage readout, the hybrid driver can see what driving patterns achieve the best results.

A growing number of non-hybrid cars now include miles-per-gall
on readouts; will we see similar improvements in driver behavior as a result?

I agree that fundamental for human behaviour to adapt and learn for the new social landscapes are feedback mechanisms - similar to how bio-feedback works - that enable an individual to better adjust their actions in order to maximise results - the strategem of cybernetics.

Read in full - Information, Context and Change

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