New technologies – How we react


innovation – ©Oya Şanlı

Sometimes we embrace , some times we reject the coming technologies or something new. I’m trying to understand reasons.

I mostly build the new for the companies I worked for. Most of the time I faced with one pc on a table at the beginning and I ended up with a network of pcs. Now, thinking back, I never fear to try new. However, the new must be needed and must have some purpose to be used. Following what is coming up and which is going to be useful for the company I work always is part of my job.

As I remember colleagues some times had some fears about if new systems were capable of doing things correctly or not. However, training them and showing the results helped them to change their opinion. After getting some training and seeing the results some colleagues’ emotions changed. When we finished the first group’s training almost all of colleagues’ who were rejected before changed their idea.

According to Paul Solvic’s research people make judgments and decisions by consulting their emotions.

I remember getting handhelds for the company I work first time in my carrier. Some factories were using them in their warehouse to keep track of their stock. My company needed to keep track of sales and it was running a franchise operation. Using handhelds next to cashier would do the job. Around 1992 there were only regular cash machines and pos for credit cards. I believe it was first time that handhelds used in sales operation at shops in Turkey so Monitor made a story out of it and published in their magazine.

I remember seeing handhelds at restaurants around 2000 since they were cheaper, smaller and many other features on. Again Solvic says; when people were favorably disposed toward new technology, they rated it as offering large benefits and imposing little risk.


collaboration – ©Oya Şanlı

Technology and products are always in change according to our needs. Products are made for sale and to earn money out of. When they meet the need more profit and improvements on product can be made. Sometimes I am thinking if the key point is money for the technology. For the ones related to consumption I believe it is. However for science on the contrary the key point is science. And in science you spend instead of earn money. The science earns at that point.

A few moments ago I watch a video about a table where you can fix your pizza on it virtually. There are some small devices are on sale which can turn the wall to a blackboard. I find both similar. I think I saw one of device about 4 to 5 years ago at one of teaching related summit in Istanbul. This device was filling the special need and it may not let as much as profit as pizza ordering table does. However, I did not see any table like it around me at Sunnyvale for now. May be in the near future a fantasy restaurant get one or two tables since they are not in need like the teachers. When the tables are getting cheaper, having more features then like handhelds we will see them in every restaurant.

As Solvic’s research; consistent affect is a central element of what I have called associative coherence. People who had received a message extolling the benefits of the technology changed their emotional appeal of the technologies, also changed their beliefs about its risk.

Also when more people buys and be happy with it the general emotion is in change.

Sometimes, even we find the purpose because of some other risks we fear from new technology.

Solvic says; experts show many of the same biases as the rest of us in attenuated form, but often their judgments and preferences about risks diverge from those of other people.

To remove the risk sometimes costs more than we expect. Think about security risks. As I lived through dealing with security risks differs from company to company, people to people. I remember asking if we are going to use hardware or software type of security solutions to the headquarters of the company I was working for. The answer is not totally dependent to the risks for an SMB. Like cost there are many other things to consider beside risks, since some can be tolerable or may not cause any loss unlike a bank. So the expert in a bank will find different security solution then an expert works for an SMB. Moreover, other people in bank and in SMB will consider risks totally in a different point of view.


repeating – ©Oya Şanlı

Every new technology has own risks to be considered. Even the new itself may be a risk, because people do not know so much about it and about its results. I remember the implementation of a new software at the company I worked for. Since the way of doing jobs were going to change at first many colleagues rejected to use it. However, keep educating them and showing some good results made change their approach.

I guess that is why we all are seeing hints of new technologies over and over again especially at social media. If the purpose and the results are well explained I believe the new is accepted more.

I am not sure when to release this kind of information though. Releasing early may help others to collaborate and then as a result we may end up with a better product or with many new next to it. Moreover, seeing and hearing continuously about the new may lower the rejection since that makes our emotion to change. Remember Solvic’s research; consistent affect is a central element of what I have called associative coherence.

In a nutshell, first our emotions has an affect on accepting new and we are able to change that emotion using various methods like training, demonstrating, sharing. Experts have critical role to guide or lead the public.

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