The observable examined

Unintended consequences

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In the 1990’s, Chaos theory was made popular by James Gleick’s book – Chaos.  The most common metaphor, that found its way into popular culture, was that of the fluttering of a butterfly’s wings in one part of the world causing weather changes at a remote location far removed from the original action. Not so much Chaos theory as unintended consequences, Matt Ridley’s article : First, the Bad News : We Can Cause Earthquakes , explores the idea that human actions, be it dam building, or  gas drilling, or geothermal projects,  can potentially trigger earthquakes!  Simply, the idea is, building a dam near a fault zone potentially accelerates it failure because of the enormous weight of the stagnant water behind the dam.

My thinking is systems oriented, so this article made for interesting reading. Talking of unintended consequences, here is another one. Apple prides itself on it slick designs. One such example is the MacBook Pro which has an aluminum body. Now that it is getting to Winter and colder days, this morning when I opened it to write this blog, the  palm rests were very cold to the touch  causing a few moments of discomfort (in much colder places this may last longer). If you are talking about user centric design, anticipating these unintended consequences constitute the last 1 or 0.5% of the user experience. Is it?


Written by asterix98

November 19, 2011 at 6:10 pm

Posted in chaos theory, science

Tagged with , ,

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