Here’s our idea to describe to people in the software world what experts – or people who have to work or ‘use’ the software – would ideally think like – like a seafarer.
The same today or thousands of years ago, above all the seafarer needs situation awareness. There’s 3 key things – the weather and sea, the condition of the ship and the condition of the crew – and these haven’t changed.
The seafarer may need to make difficult decisions based on this situation awareness. A change of course, maintenance work, handling a personnel issue. And the results of these decisions will be seen soon enough, in the changing picture of the situation.
All the time the seafarer will learn, because there is no better way to learn than by doing – and seeing what works and what doesn’t.
The seafarer will have a destination and a direction. But, unless we are talking about the modern GPS era, he (since it was probably nearly always a he) wouldn’t have known much about the rate of progress.
This is important. We hear about many people in the workplace today who want to be continually scored, or told how well they’re doing. Being in the education system can be like that. Being in the real world is not like that. We generally have 2 states – success – getting to your destination – or not having got there yet. Whether we will ever get there is for us to decide.