Why Albert Einstein would have liked Desktop.com.
Albert Einstein’s desk
There is no better example.
As we deepen and enrich as individuals, as we advance in our chosen professions and fields of study, our desktop becomes an extension of our thought processes and perspectives. And each desktop is as different and unique as its owner. Each desktop a compendium of what is known, what is needed and what could be. Each desktop a portal to connect with the contemplations of others and a jump point to the unknown.
Thus is the desktop. Both yours and mine.
This is Einstein’s desk.
Like Mark Twain and a few other great minds, he was also known for owning a particularly cluttered desk and did not hesitate to brag about it with one of his most fanciful quotes
"If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what then is an empty desk a sign?"
His desk is not cluttered. No. Look again. His desk is an extension of a mind working through atomic theories. Do not for a moment think he did not know where everything was on that desk.
The desktop is also indicative of how we learn.
Knowledge and discovery is not linear. It happens in waves and tends to form piles of seemingly connected items that eventually form into ideas, theories and facts. And available information has expanded exponentially since Einstein. Any serious research or work in any field, any endeavor, can easily create piles of data ten times what is on Einstein’s desk. What Einstein needed (and he knew he needed it) and what we need as well, is a way to simplify our piles of files to give us full control in order to use the data without sacrificing our individuality, thereby granting amazingly intuitive operation.
How do you see your desktop? Is it a garden? Are the Nasturtiums and Roses here, beans and tomatoes here, birdbath and gazebo over there? Is it a filing cabinet alphabetically organized from top to bottom, left to right? Do you place your files against the contrasting colors of your favorite wallpaper? Is it a shopping mall with all the different stores conveniently placed? Do you even think about it? Does it even matter?
Einstein’s desktop could very well have been a model of a plutonium atom. We will never know.
Aesthetics aside, we come to our next important point.
Time is an Illusion.
Einstein thought so.
Time spent searching through files certainly feels real enough. Multiply five minutes of searching for a file or a link by a roomful of employees several times a day and hours can build up. Hours of time gone by. That may be an illusion, but your balance sheets may beg to differ.
"Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute." - Albert Einstein
Yeah, time is funny like that. It is fleeting and it drags. But being able to “save time” is really something to admire. It can make all the difference in a busy day and be an invaluable tool for your business. We are so digitally oriented today, so connected to our computers, our media, so much of our time spent interacting with a screen, an app. Anything we can do to streamline the interaction process is a plus for us. To have full control of it, where it is stored, how it is grouped and displayed, to share it with one or many with a few simple steps…that would be good. An entire company sharing it, saving valuable time and space…that could make a difference.
Which brings us to space.
Model for Thinking.
"Time and space are not conditions of existence, time and space is a model for thinking." - Albert Einstein
Albert, Albert, Albert. On a sub-atomic level, I am certain you are correct. But sitting at my desk through the day is a definite aspect of my existence. The space I call my chair has a strong opinion in my existence, as does the space I utilize on my desktop. The more dependent I am on my digital connections, the greater the time of interaction, the more demanding and invasive they seem, the more important it is to better utilize my time and space. We need a tool to minimize the actuality of time and space upon our existences.
Which brings us back to the topic at hand – our desktops.
No matter how we perceive it, no matter the metaphor we choose, we have a relationship that is here to stay. We must better organize, utilize, conceptualize and realize our desktops to free us for more creative ventures. Our tools should improve the quality of our work while decreasing the time we invest. Going digital accomplished that for the world. Now we can take the next step - fine tuning our digital space to refine our space and time.
Einstein knew it long ago. He would have liked Desktop.com.
We do too.