The Ontology of work: The pre-eminence of Homo Faber

For a long time — certainly the past 15 years or so — one of the main filters through which I have passed notions about technology development and adoption is the very simple notion of work. what is being done — the ontology of work. It seems that most analysis of technology somehow omits the important consideration of what peolpe actually do in a productive mode. There’s a strange level of abstraction that occurs that fails to examine the elemental nature of work; the conversation that it represents at an individual and group level.
This assertion isn’t based on any empirical observation — it’s more a function of intuition. But I have very good intuition, and I’m thinking about this as a prelude to constructing a more formal research plan. But I think it’s imperative that designers pick up the mantle of understanding work at a more granular level, not work as a disaggregated set of functions.

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