We have more and more tools that do the work for us, but they're slow, so we can't use them as a basis for new, complex skills because half the time is waiting. In their slowness, however, they are not complex enough for us to be able to use the waiting time.
Even our phones are slower to respond with Voice over IP, and video conferencing often has delays of up to a second; forced waiting time before a reaction is perceptible.
Most tools today aren't built so we can work with them as efficiently as possible, but just to avoid being so uncomfortably slow that people stop using them.
In line with this, video games are associated with higher intelligence in 9-11 year olds. Computer games usually react without any noticeable delay and require quick reactions and complex interaction.
The tools we use every day should learn from this.
Gamification not as a loss of self-chosen initiative, but as a brain-friendly way of interacting.
- Does this apply for chat? In a matrix chat you are often waiting while the other person is typing. I feel this slowness in conversation can help increase the quality.
When you’re waiting for the other people typing, this is not a simple tool: You are already thinking about what to write next, because there is complex state on the other end (a person).
If there is only the machine at the other end, that’s different.
The effect of even small delays (sub 30ms!) has been described for typing, along with great measurements of the actual typing latency of different systems (though the comparison between Emacs and IntelliJ for XML is unfair, because IntelliJ disables highlighting for larger files).