Welcome to February 2022 edition of the Xth volume of Carnival of Quality Management Articles and Blogs.
The theme for the Xth volume of our Carnival of Quality Management Articles and Blogs is inspired from the editorial of the January 2022 special Issue of Prabuddha Bharata (The Awakened India) – Living a Meaningful Life in a Digital World.
For our present episode, we take up the article, Living safely in the digital way of life, by Swami Satyapriyananda.
Here is the excerpt from the article:
The principle behind a happy, contended spiritual life is to take care of our needs avoid luxuries. In the digital way of living this can be interpreted as installing and using only those apps that you (really) need. This can be better done when the influence of digital way of living is understood so as to use digital way of living safely and effectively. For that purpose, the article discusses basics of a few aspects of the digital way of living:
Digital World: The digital world is about processing ‘data’ and generating digital ‘information’ for the fast access from a variety of sources, for fast communication between people or machines (objects) and fast decision making. We got connected with the rest of the world very easily and very fast, too. However, a family though seated together has each of its member lost in his or her digital addiction.
The Ecosystem of the Digital World: The ecosystem of the digital world comprises of devices (hardware) of different types and types for running different software(s) the internet, cloud computing sever data centers, actuators, sensors and the devices connected through them, a variety of gadgets like cameras, autonomous vehicles like drones, robots and the Artificial Intelligence (AI) software(s) running over all of them. Most of the apps are very intuitive and deceptively simple in the hands of the users, But the design and build of these apps are very complex. So has been the modern life too, on one hand it has become very simple, with the help of this ecosystem, but had become over complex also because of the overpowering presence of that very ecosystem.
Artificial Intelligence: AI is software that really has made the devices really smart, by mimicking how the humans think. However, AI algorithms, inherently, encode their programmer’s biases and prejudices as well.
The discussion of all components of the ecosystem would be too complex and lengthy to be covered in an article like the present one.
The usage of digital way of living is becoming almost all pervasive with different e-applications like e-Governance, e-banking, e-healthcare, e-communication like smart chats or virtual video conferences, e-education, e-supply chains, e-maps and positioning, digital photography and video making and sharing, etc.
The biggest trap to lure the user to the app is making it available as free. In order to pay for that ‘free’ service, monetizing of the end-applications has led to abuses like usage of personal data for targeted advertising, pushing political, religious or social agendas or fake news and rumors, fraudulent usages, and intrusions into the one’s privacy. Has any lunch ever been free in its true sense?
Using these devices and the apps is like riding a tiger by its tail. A small error or oversight can lend the user into major financial loss apart from the loss of one’s critical data and privacy or using it too much can lead to various disease from eye problems or muscular strains to even depression
The golden rule(s) to live safely in the digital way of living are:
- Input the barest minimum personal data to achieve one’s legitimate needs.
- Keep distance from seductive offers
- Be your own master of your time and your execution plans.
- Stop all types of auto-notifications. Never carry your phone with you when you eat or sleep.
- Do religiously follow the applicable guideline for safe and secure us of the app, as provided by the app provider.
The Bitter Truth that we need to remember on the Way Forward is that we, the human beings are indeed conditioned by external stimuli, as are these devices by the embedded software. But, then we have a mind of our own, not like those devices which are just dumb machines. In the name of (fast changing technological) progress, we should not surrender the unimaginable powers of our mind to that dumb machine.
One must set before oneself the goal of each phase of one’s life and an ideal to follow. Use the beneficial features of the digital way of life only to the extent that takes us forward in the life-long endeavor. Also, do ensure that these smart devices do not use us – our energies, our time and our life.
In other words, the way forward in live safely in the digital way of life is out smart the smart devices.
The search for the present day contexts of staying safe in the digital life, one will find several meaningful and updated articles on protecting yourself in digital world, with variations like tips to safe against cybercrime, or tips to stay safe online. One may find very useful discussions at platforms like TED.com, like -.
- Get ready for hybrid thinking – TED 2014 – Ray Kurzweil
- How to protect your mental well-being online — from a Gen-Zer – TED Salon –UINICEF – Peachy Liv
- The importance of emotional tone in the digital age – TED@IBM – Kareem Yusuf
- How to be “Team Human” in the digital future– TED Salon: Samsung – Douglas Rushkoff
We will now turn to our regular sections in 2022 too.
We now watch ASQ TV episode on–
- Changing World, Adapting Improvement Models (Lean and Six Sigma) – Jay Patel, Founder, CEO, and President, QPS, discusses the fundamentals of both Lean and Six Sigma methodologies and how to determine which tool your organization or project can benefit most from.
We have taken up one article from Jim L. Smith’s Jim’s Gems :
- Focus on What’s Important – If wait until the things get perfect, that day will never come. If we use what we have, howsoever flawed or imperfect as it may seem, we will soon be on the way to making substantial improvements. … All we must do is to start from where we are, with what we have and persistently do what we must do. “All you can do is all that you can do, but that all that you can do is enough.” There is no limit to where one can progress if we break our self-imposed barriers.
‘From the Editor’ (of Quality Magazine) – by Darryl Sealand, we have –
- Indecision: From Aristotle and Buridan to Metastability and Digital Circuits – Aristotle is said to have sarcastically asserted to the version that the earth is stationary because it being spherical, all forces acting equally from all direction, renders it motionless by the famous statement that the assertion “was as ridiculous as saying that a man, being just as hungry as thirsty, and placed in between food and drink, must necessarily remain where he is and starve to death.”,
Similarly, Buridian paradox of free will’s donkey starves to death because he remains indecisive to choose which of the bale placed at equal distance to choose.
Michael Hauskeller, an associate professor of philosophy at the University of Exeter , explains by providing examples and scenarios that suggest that based on our experiences, feelings, and preferences, we must have a reason, known or unknown, for our decisions. And the biggest reason for having to decide, one way or the other, is reality, or time.
To help with decisions on the shop floor, Bill Tandler suggests we turn to GD&T. from Grim, Depressing & Troublesome into Grand, Delightful & Tantalizing,”
[Editorial note: When we outsmart the smart devise, we turn the digital way of life into GD&T, Grand, Delightful & Tantalizing way of life.]
I look forward to your views / comments / inputs to further enrich the theme of Living a Meaningful Life in a Digital World.
Note: The images or video clips depicted here above are through courtesy of respective websites who have the copyrights for the respective images /videos.