With computers doing the thinking, the executive is lonely

Enjoy this report by the BBC's Tomorrow's World into the new phenomenon of desk toys for bored modern executives. At the weekends, he polishes his flowers with aerosols.

Video Link [BBC]


  1. This idea is fully developed in Vonnegut’s Player Piano. Check it out, it is a great read.

  2. Wow…that is the earliest James Burke clip I’ve ever seen.  Usually he is quite on the ball with his future predictions (see Connections and The Day the Universe Changed). 
    Unfortunately he did not predict the internet, which I think is what the lonely executive will spend his day on.

    1. Burke actually DID predict the internet, but much later than when he did this clip, obviously.
      Anyway, nice to be aware that he’s always looked exactly the same.
      “The modern executive spends office time splitting his attention between Angry Birds, pr0n and lolcatz”.
      “The modern executive continually presses the ‘previous channel’ function on his remote control to switch back and forth between Deal Or No Deal reruns on GSN (for adrenaline) and The Weather Channel (for relaxation)”.

  3. We used to call it Tomorrow’s World – Yesterday’s Technology Today. Notice the long run-out at the end so they could cut back to the live studio. Yes, most of the show was live, though this is a film insert. Demonstrations often went wrong. Great entertainment.

  4. Wow, no need for executives? That must mean the rest of us schmoes are out of work too. I’ll bet they even have robots to drink beer for us to in that ‘future’.

  5. Funny thing is, i think secretaries and accountants are more likely to be replaced with computers then execs. Except for those that have a physical secretary for vanities sake, or who wants a accountant they can actually get to doctor the books in ways that slips past the cracks of the regulations.

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