Software for stimulation

Here’s an idea (well I’m not the first to think of it, but bear with me)

Shouldn’t enterprise software stimulate its users?

Let’s say, the role of an expert is usually to spot and understand problems, spot and understand opportunities, and develop solutions.

Historically software has been very good at (let’s say) anti stimulating people – the software version of the smoke alarm which goes off by itself – it gives you a list of things it doesn’t like (usually something wrong with the data), which basically gives expert workers some extremely tedious work.

What software could actually do is almost ‘tease’ the user by showing them some information it has found which look like it might lead somewhere – so the user is inclined to follow it.

Analytics tools could be analysing data all the time for something which the human might want to pay more attention to.

An interesting idea, shared by Paul Cleverley at a Finding Petroleum conference earlier this year,  is that search engines should aim to surprise the user, rather than bring them exactly what they expect.

Case management tools could act like a mentor to the user by being able to say ‘last time the situation was like this, here’s what the people did about it, and here’s what happened’.

This all requires sophisticated software but is easily possible with today’s technology. There’s just a lot of manual work involved understanding the expert’s landscape and the information available, to work out what would be helpful.

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