The factory of our dreams or the prison we lock ourselves in?
It's my pleasure to launch a new collective blogging project named The Human In The Machine. After the four intense years spent feeding The Pastry Box Project with Katy Watkins, I took a year off to work on other projects, like building SuperYesMore, the CMS powering this very post.
Throughout 2017, I expect to publish 365 posts from 365 authors (364 authors if I write the final post myself), all about the same topic: productivity.
In many regards, I doubt this project is feasible. Actually, I even think the 365 posts goal is probably impossible to reach for someone who has a job, two kids, plays music and practices sports. A publishing project like this one represents so many emails, so many parameters and variables, such a complex algorithm, so many unpredictable events and such a discipline that I can't possibly think I will be able to handle all the events involved in its completion during 365 days.
It's going to be like a year of Tetris. Without a break.
The interesting concept, as far as I'm concerned, is that I will have to be very productive to manage this publication about productivity. And at the heart of productivity lie many questions that define us in the face of the world we live in.
Why do we do what we do? Are we putting our brains and energy at work for serving a system we dislike? On the contrary are we fighting it? Do we embrace its values by telling ourselves stories about how we're not part of it, when it's just the very essence of being part of it? Are we where we are to improve, share and help others or are these noble intentions just a veil we cast on our quest for success and power? Do we need recognition to fill some holes we don't want to see in our constant self-evaluation? Do we own up to our goals or do we create a narrative in which we can become who we would like to be when we look at ourselves in the mirror?
As soon as you start being productive–and conceptualizing your ways of being so–it seems to me that you inevitably become part of a system, a machine that you feed, a machine which produces results you can't fully control.
I'm fascinated by productivity on so many levels.
I love the pleasure of doing more in less time and reducing complex tasks to simple procedures. I enjoy the “internal competition” that productivity can sometimes bring into my inner life. I like telling myself that I'm doing what I'm doing for a good cause, but I'm also interested in reflecting on the hidden goals that might escape the analysis I'm making of my own self, and whether I want to change these goals or welcome them.
I want to hear from others on this topic.
Here's The Human In The Machine. Our editorial line is very open. We may publish tips and tricks about softwares as well as life improvement techniques (coffee/nap, pomodoro, whatever) or full-blown philosophical essays on the matter of productivity.
I hope you will enjoy reading The Human In The Machine. I certainly will enjoy running it.