| In many cases, the home has degenerated into a sort of service station, where we fill up during the day and park at night, after spending most of our time at the office/factory or school. Electronic technology permits us to work and learn at home. The home of the future could be the place where we escape from the three boxes of life into a more integrated life where we flow freely between learning and working and playing. |
People are beginning to escape from the rigid set that work is done in an office/factory (the two words are collapsed since they are becoming more and more difficult to distinguish) and learning is done in a school/university. I once overheard one editor in my publishing company saying to another "I won't be in the office tomorrow, Terry, I've got some work to do". Recently, a current colleague of mine blurted out, when asked about his schedule: "I work in the morning and come to the office in the afternoon".
Attitudes of the other members of the family must change in order to make "homework" feasible. A professor on sabbatical, trying to write a book at home, was constantly interrupted by his wife and children. They had to establish a convention. After breakfast together, he would put on his coat, pick up his briefcase, kiss them all good-bye, and walk out the front door and in the back door to his office. As far as everyone was concerned, Daddy was at the office until the ritual was repeated in reverse in the evening.
The physical layout of the home will also have to change. Interesting problems are posed to architects to design an appropriate mix of public and private spaces. The typical home, consisting of living-room, kitchen, bathroom, and X bedrooms betrays the current emphasis on basic biological functions of eating and sleeping. The home in the information society will contain offices for working and entertainment/education centers for learning. Bedrooms may become smaller to make more space for learning, working, and playing.
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