Preparing for the future, scenario #1: Manon, the frugal design coach
August 4, 2023 11:50

Preparing for the future has always been our leitmotiv, and as we want to bring trust in Digital, we need to ask ourselves the right questions and anticipate for some unseen obstacles: What if the technology gets out of control? How will climate change shape tomorrow’s world? How do we, as humans, interact with each other in the age of AI? We’ve thought some of these questions through with the French media Usbek&Rica and imagined futuristic scenarios describing what tomorrow's world could look like, based on the choices we make today. 


Hi everyone! You are here for an upgrade of your frugal and responsible design practices. 

You will have to unlearn certain approaches on which you have built your professional success, and integrate practices that will allow you to remain competitive in a completely disrupted environmental and geopolitical context. Your thirst for tech has helped you so far but will have to reorient itself. 

Looking at your faces, I already have the impression you have no idea what I’m talking about. Don't worry, everything will be cleared up. You all know why your employers sent you here. Many of you have worked your way up for many years, starting from zero; you were close to the top and you suddenly find yourself outdated by newbies coming out of some fancy engineering schools who took a "Responsible Digital" course. Your boss suddenly thinks of you as a has-been and the social elevator has come down much faster than it went up. 

You can put away your computers and your laptops for the moment, because we will first work on your postures and representations of the world. 

We will start our bootcamp with an understanding of the global constraints that bring you here: chip shortages since the invasion of Taiwan, shortages of rare metals, maybe one day power and water cuts… 

No one knows exactly when we're going to run out of what, but overall that doesn't change anything about the finitude of the world. We must get out of the idea of ​​the open bar world, which harms the resilience of our IT systems and therefore of our country. We can no longer take for granted infinite bandwidth, or ever more numerous terminals and connected objects that we renew at all costs. I will then help you rethink your approach to design as well as your sales pitch to your clients. 

Many of you have acquired new needs and lost large customers, who have gone to services companies like Mavana Earth. Green IT has become, by necessity, a selling point. We need to create simpler, energy-efficient software that can run efficiently on older devices, in a world where planned obsolescence no longer makes economic sense. We will therefore talk about optimizing resources, limiting unnecessary functionalities, reducing data transfers, judicious use of algorithms, and developing parsimonious hybrid AIs. 

Here’s to minimizing the direct digital footprint. The second half of your training will focus on indirect imprinting. Most of you may never have heard of it. We will talk about rebound effects, digital-induced systemic transformations, and the influence of digital on our social and cultural patterns. To put it in less jargon terms: digital must by design lead the rest of society towards more sobriety... quite the opposite of what the algos of Amazon, TikTok, and Instagram are doing! » 

Preparing for the future, scenario #1: Manon, the frugal design coach