Forever Beta – never perfect, always emergent

Give up the thought of creating a product that is fixed in time. We are now in a world of forever beta. Constant emergence, constant improvement, constant change. And speedy too, faster every day.

Just imagine if you lived as if this were true all the time, in everything you do? Welcome to that world.

Fast Forever Beta…technology, blogging, software, babies, young children, a rare group of people, like Positive Deviants and non conformists, google, apple, Seth..

Medium Forever Beta…older children, some people who seek change consciously, companies like Nokia, the pharmaceuticals, weapons systems, entertainment..

Slo..o..o..w Forever Beta…most people, most relationships, most businesses, housing, our economic system, our governance system, our transport system, our energy systems, our education systems, politics, most countries, our health systems…(True, some things need to be in slow forever beta to maintain health and stability. Thankfully the rotation of our planets, the movement of the earths crust…these things are in slow forever beta. however…most of our human systems are in slow forever beta at the cost of our comprehensive health.)

Does this tell a story? I hope so. The story it tells me is that we better get with the program and build faster forever beta into many significant aspects of our lives. Because when we don’t the systems literally become dinosaurs. And we are surrounded by dinosaurs. We now have the technology to build fast forever beta as a matter of habit and because it is an imperative.

You start up a new restaurant…and either set up a blog, or better yet, Twitter…so your customers can interact with you immediately. Feedback can be harsh, or great..but it will be speedy. Would you rather know that your food tonight was below par, than to hear about it next month because no one came to eat? Tonight I can do something about it for tomorrow..next month it may be too late. I may be broke!

How about personal relationships? Imagine if we truly accepted that we are in forever beta in our relationships.. Each and every day WILL be different between the two of you. That you can look forward to the changes, the uncertainty? I find it strange that we seem to accept this with young children, knowing that they change and grow so quickly…yet at some point we expect our children to reach a place where they stay the same…become predictable. And we get mad when our children or our partners do not conform to our expectations and be the same as they were yesterday.

Our technological world has lead the way in forever beta. Version #1.0 is released, and the minute after release version #1.1 is in progress. We like this about technology. Especially when the updates are part of the original price. We like it when things get better and better. However, when our partner comes home and says he has a new version of himself, fear grips us. Will we like the new version? Will the new version like us? Will we think that the new version is better and better? How will we relate?  And there in lies the dilemma! We have to learn to live in constant feedback of forever beta in order to keep up with each other and when we do not…opps… the ”who are you?” syndrome arises.

We are all addicted to the predictable in places in our lives. I do like to know that I can go to my bedroom at night and sleep in a warm bed. However, I know that when I do travel, the experience of the unpredictable is what makes travel so great. The Forever Beta of travel gets me out of the rut…… and the rut is like a slow sleeping sickness. I don’t know I am in it until I am thrown out of it by change. While I may not like the change, or find it comfortable, it keeps me alive and in motion.

And Forever Beta is just that. Alive! Moving, responding, adapting..learning..

Our world is heaving under the lid of stuck systems. Be sure not to be one of them. And when your partner comes home in version #6.7, crack the champagne.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*