Archive | April, 2014

Seamless Transition, part 1

14 Apr

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The great robotic minds of the future knows which line to change, which lines to say, and which lines to run when a change is necessary. They do this with ruthless efficiency, and will shed blood. Heck, they will even bring down the moon if it means doing the job properly. They are only bounded by programs, algorithms that tells them what to do and how to do. Just think of the Terminator – a cold killer who does nothing except executive the tasks assigned by his masters, a collective intelligence, or in the second and third movie, a human. You tell him what to do, and he’ll get the job done. Guaranteed.

We are edging ever closer to this reality, where essentially Terminators could take up anyone’s mundane job, deeming workers redundant. These excess workers will then be “displaced” (read: fired) so that management could better devote resources for other critical ventures. Millions will lose their jobs at a second’s notice. No emails are sent. Just a slip in every worker’s hand, and off they go. The cogs of the great corporate machine have just been replaced by better oiled cogs. 

Millions upon millions around the world, now replaced, return to their homes, contemplating on the coldblooded decision. Even Tim, the most efficient worker on the line, can’t understand why they would do this to him. He’s got Employee of the Month 6 months in a row, always had the best productivity, never complained, and was touted for promotion. He couldn’t understand why they just let everyone go. 

The news had no mention of any corporate downsizing tonight. The robot anchor, in her synthetic human voice, only read news of the anniversary of the invention of quantum computing, and various interviews with corporate big wigs and a bunch of dying scientists. Someone else’s joy was covering his sorrow. He couldn’t sleep that night, and just went to bed in his greased navy overalls, still thinking how did he ever lose his job. But, he was also thinking of a bigger problem now that his mind began to function again. Money. The bills are coming.

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Mind Numbing Wait

3 Apr

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It is 11:47am. I am sitting in the office with a stack of paper in front of me. The stack is essentially recyclable material because I am done with them. Draft after draft of printed ads really do add up quickly. The first piece of paper on that stack is scribbled beyond recognition. Blue pen marks, red pen marks, green highlight on top, pink highlight at the bottom and yellow highlight in the middle. I can read some of the scribbles on there, as I should, as half the blue pen marks are my own grand work, but I do realize my penmanship is terrible. I do remember penmanship being one of my worst graded work back in my elementary school days.

Beyond that stack of paper is another stack of paper. This stack is from another project, and that too has barely legible writing on the first page. What makes this stack different is that I am writing in Chinese, which makes things even worse. If you have seen me write in English, then take 70% off on craftsmanship for my Chinese handwriting. It could probably pass for caveman scribbles. As I am trying to read my own writing, I see my question mark taking resemblance to a worm squiggling out of a hole in the ground. I really can’t write in Chinese.

Yes, I have done a lot of work in the past few days. So I guess I have been productive. Now, I am merely watching football highlights on the internet while writing this. Actually, I can’t bare to watch the highlights. What a terrible game Chelsea had last night. A two goal deficit. At least they got an away goal, so they got that going for them, which is… nice…?

You may be thinking why am I writing lots of non-content. Well that’s because I am waiting for stuff to happen. Yes, waiting. I wait a lot at work. I wait for my copy to be approved, I wait for designers to be done with their artwork, and I wait for a response from clients. This is the waiting game. I now have the right to put down “has incredible patience” or “has the patience of several saints” on my CV. Perhaps I could update that while I am waiting.

Yawn. Please don’t start sending me emails at 5:30pm, because this sort of practice is bullshit. I work better at 2pm than at 6pm.