How to Succeed in the Information Age

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Ray Strackbein
Meeting Planners

Survive the Transition:
Industrial Age to Information Age
by Ray Strackbein

We are a civilization in transition. Industrial Age rules no longer work, yet Information Age rules are not widely known. We are in the Information Revolution, the transition to the Information Age from the Industrial Age. These three actions will help us move into the Information Age:

  1. Unlearn Industrial Age Misinformation
  2. Discover Information Age rules
  3. Adopt the network as your metaphor for life

Unlearn Industrial Age Misinformation

The transition to the Information Age requires learning new Information Age concepts, and sometimes requires unlearning old Industrial Age traditions. Grasping new spins on old information can be even more difficult than absorbing new information.

The Industrial Age Metaphor was the assembly line.

    Back in the Industrial Age, we worshiped the assembly line. We could produce anything. The Industrial Age method was to start with a batch of standard raw materials, perform standard operations on them, and get a standard product at the end. The Industrial Age became abusive when uniform standards were applied to people as well as products. People were expected to have uniform training, beliefs, and values.

Our education system still performs uniform operations on its childlike raw materials. The goal is to mold our children into uniform products, each passed with a quality assurance certificate: a diploma.

Discover Information Age Rules

The primary cause of society's problems is that we still teach Industrial Age concepts and create even more Industrial Age rules.

    We live in the Information Age! Industrial Age rules and values don't work in the Information Age yet people judge us by old Industrial Age traditions. We do the right things and are penalized.

We are in a double bind. We can reduce the double binds by discovering, understanding, using, and teaching new Information Age methods, rules and values. It is time to transition from the abusive Industrial Age to the Information Age. It is time to write and teach the rules for the Information Age.

New Metaphors

As we move from the Industrial Age to the Information Age, we are adopting new metaphors. The metaphor of the Information Age is the network. Want a job? Network! Want to make more sales? Network!

    The most profound contrast between the of the Industrial Age and the Information Age is the contrast between the assembly line and the network. The great revelation behind the network metaphor is that we don't lose our individual identity when we combine our strengths.

The American dream is to network

Our founders designed the Information Age into our country when they declared each individual to be uniquely valuable and affirmed our right to communicate.

    The dream of Americans is to network. We want to be the best we can be and reach out and touch everyone and everything. Phrased traditionally, we want life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

The United States was founded as a network. The Bill of Rights encourages each of us to be unique and to communicate. It guarantees that we cannot be penalized for what we believe or say. It promises us that we can develop our own beliefs. It guarantees our right to communicate. Each individual is a node on our network.  Each person brings unique experiences and talents to our society.

    The American Revolution set the stage for the Information Revolution.


Copyright © Ray & Sally Strackbein
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Herndon, VA  20171
703 262-0361