The world has changed a lot in my lifetime in the way we communicate with others. I am sure that when the telephone was first invented, or live news broadcasts were available, people felt a similar shift, but the way that technology has allowed us to keep in touch with each other, instantaneously, almost anywhere on the globe, is amazing. I grew up with one phone in the house, with an extra long cord, and now have a Smartphone that gives me not only voice communication, but incredible amounts of data on a regular basis. I find myself communicating with text (Twitter), voice (phone), and even with myself (Evernote) almost every day.
The shifts have also occurred very rapidly, which has brought with it challenges, and occasionally problems. This Intel survey highlights a few issues, and this PSA shows one that many of us are probably affected by at different times.
In technology we have to deal with interruptions, and sometimes urgent situations that require immediate attention. We have to respond like a doctor on call for emergency room situations, but the reality is that most of our “alerts” aren’t that critical and no one, or no business, will die if we are a few minutes late. There are exceptions but for in most cases these events aren’t extremely time sensitive.
As you build monitoring and alerting systems, include a little etiquette . Don’t unnecessarily page people, or alert them for situations that don’t need immediate attention. Bring visibility to problems, but don’t overwhelm someone with a large amount of data, and please, don’t alert people that things are working correctly. At this point in computing, automated systems ought to triage out most of the minor issues without involving humans.
Our world has changed rapidly, with the speed and accessibility of communications growing quicker than our ability to deal with it. In some sense, I think that the deluge of data that we now have will bring new problems to our world, especially as more and more businesses look to analyze data in real time. We will face challenges that would have seemed like science fiction a decade ago.