Adafruit will not be shipping orders Thanksgiving Day, Thursday November 22, 2018. Expedited orders placed after 11am ET Wednesday November 21 will go out Friday November 23.

Why IEEE Fellow Radia Perlman hates technology


Why IEEE Fellow Radia Perlman hates technology @ ITworld via .

What advice would you give to fellow engineers?
Start out with finding the right problem to solve. This is a combination of “what customers are asking for”, “what customers don’t even know they want yet” and “what can be solved with something simple to understand and manage”. And, try to think about and understand various approaches, and the tradeoffs between various choices.

…But the world would be a better place if more engineers, like me, hated technology.

The stuff I design, if I’m successful, nobody will ever notice. Things will just work, and be self-managing. Though, I’ve learned that some people like to configure things, so I usually design in knobs for them to play with, and perhaps improve things, but any setting of the knobs will still work correctly.

When engineers [who] just love this stuff design something, we wind up with a system that asks an innocent person attempting to install email, “Do you want POP or IMAP?” One common comment engineers make is that we need “more user training”. That’s just wrong. Instead of expecting humans to adapt to an interface slapped together by engineers, engineers should strive to create a system that is designed for humans in their natural form.

Full interview here

Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, or even use Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for MakeCode, CircuitPython, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.

Join 8,700+ makers on Adafruit’s Discord channels and be part of the community!

CircuitPython – Python on Microcontrollers is here!

Have an amazing project to share? Join the SHOW-AND-TELL every Wednesday night at 7:30pm ET on Google+ Hangouts.

Join us every Wednesday night at 8pm ET for Ask an Engineer!

Follow Adafruit on Instagram for top secret new products, behinds the scenes and more

Maker Business — Spotlight on Makeblock, one of the latest companies to find success in the STEAM market

Wearables — Emphasize the light

Electronics — Avoid serial confusion!

Biohacking — BDNF a Biohackers Best Friend

Python for Microcontrollers — Python powers costumes, and community @circuitpython @micropython @ThePSF #Python

Get the only spam-free daily newsletter about wearables, running a "maker business", electronic tips and more! Subscribe at !


  1. Norm DeValliere


  2. I would never say that we need to hate technology as engineers, but she does have a point.

    The best designers I met in college and in the real world were those who were geeks, but also knew how to have a good time (parties, going out, dancers, musicians, actors) and had varied interests. Devotion to technology is wrong. A life full of only circuits and bits is a cold and empty one.
    The problem is that often these students do extremely well in coursework and cannot create something worth a darn.

    Make your Engineers take Human-Computer Interaction, Cognitive Science, Communications, Media Production, and Artistic courses. That teaches creativity and forces engineers to interact with non-techies. She is right that they do not do a good job with networking courses and teaching specifics instead of principle concepts. Computational photography, image analysis, Sensor, and high level Music Theory courses do a better job at teaching networking concepts!

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.