Reading a piece in Wired News this morning - "Logical and precise, left-brain thinking gave us the Information Age. Now comes the Conceptual Age".
As such a good one, but I react to the statement that we are in / have been in the Information Age.
Ok, it's all about semantics and definition, but hear me out:
As hunter-gatherers started planting seeds I suspect they still kept on moving around (heh, what do I know, but think about it...) until they eventually found that the new technology enabled them to build a permanent abode. In my head, when they changed their life, that's when we moved into the Agrarian Age. Not the introduction of the technology as such.
When the first machines were introduced they inevitably replaced horse and human muscle, but the-way-thing-were-done remained the same. Even on the outset of automobile production the first ones were basically converted coach building shops, a few machines replacing manpower, but still same layout, same processes, same thinking, same life more or less.
For me the watershed was in 1913 when Henry Ford opened his Highland Park plant and the technology was used for what-it-was-worth - production time per car went from 70 to seven hours in six months. Methodology changed. Process changed, life changed, society changed. For me that was the start of the Industrial Age.
What about IT now? Some of it is used in new ways, but mostly in areas where there were no ways before. In the instances where methods and old ways were well established not much have happened.
In an organisation the structure, the methods, the ways-of-doing things are still Industrial - more or less. Actually, IT, the software, still mimics the same-old-ways, supporting the same, not much of making use of it for what-it's-worth. Would installing a CRM system increase your output tenfold? Change society? Nah, not that, not yet.
That is why I say the Information Age has not yet begun. Humbly.