June 17, 2009
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Out of the Office

In the New Yorker, Kelefa Sanneh offers a terrific and thoughtful overview of recent enthusiasms for care, craftsmanship, and artisanal work: Out Of The Office. A sensible response to Matthew B. Crawford’s much-twittered New York Times Magazine defense of The Case for Working With Your Hands.

Sanneh observes that parallels have been drawn to open source development, but I think that’s probably the wrong end of NeoVictorian Computing from which to launch this argument. I predict that we’ll learn more by looking at artisans and applications than at Linux, and in the end what we learn will inform the vast platform projects as well. In this connection, it’s worth looking at John Gruber’s WWDC wrapup which observes that a lot of people are moving into the development space – many of them iPhone developers migrating to Macintosh, rather than vice versa. (Note how the iPhone Apps store is probably the first real success for micropayments – something we’ve been trying forever.)