Where Do You Want To Go Today?
Remember this as one of Microsoft’s many slogans? – I think this was when Bill was launching Windows 95, with a whole host of new, cool stuff. Radical, dude.
Yes, it was a whole new interface – with the menu bar at the bottom. Yes, it would require retraining. Yes, it was “plug and play” when you plugged something in, it would magically appear on the desktop (Macs had done this for years, so Bill was just catching up at the time)
I distinctly remember the Windows 95 launch event in Las Vegas at Comdex that year, when Bill did the presentation and seemed to be sweating bullets while he waited for that little drive icon to show up on the desktop after he had plugged one in. The room was filled with thousands of mostly bald men, waiting with bated breath for the words of the holiest of holies, Bill Gates.
There was only a little cult of Mac back then; real geeks used Windows. Well, real geeks used UNIX, but if you were a real geek with a business sense, you followed Bill around.
But what interested me most at the time was the slogan, “Where do you want to go today?” It was a question. It rose above the fray of – I want to create a document, or I want to do a search, or I want to do a presentation. It was different. It asked a different question, which, unfortunately, the software couldn’t answer at the time. In fact, even today, any software can rarely answer that question.
What’s so special about that phrase? Think about it for a second. What is it asking you?
Where do you want to go today?
It’s asking for your intent. It’s saying, “tell me what you want” – the inferred promise being if you just tell me what you want, I can get it for you. Software of that day couldn’t do it, and neither software nor web services of today can do it either, although they try.
What is my intent? What am I wondering about? An example: I realize that my old car is a pile of you know what and decide, “I’m going to buy a new car” Sure, this might come out as “I want to buy a new car” or “scooter” or “motorcycle” or whatever. I initially thought that I need to replace it since I currently own a car, and it’s not meeting my needs. Of course, my mind is set on a car because that is what I think I need. From a higher level, however, my intent is to obtain and use some kind of thing which can transport me, and whatever else I need to transport, be it stuff, people, or whatever, from point A to point B and to do it in a fashion of my choosing. Sounds reasonable, right?
So let’s say that you have made the decision to begin researching those options. My assertion is that despite the advances that we have made since the internet was born as the semi-friendly location that it is today, we still have to do about as much legwork (and in some cases, much more) as some dude back in the mid-80s buying that nice Reliant automobile.
I hope you enjoyed this sample chapter from my latest book, Wonder Man Machine