This is a great time to be working in technology. Instead of being the geek that works quietly on who-knows-what in the cubicle at the end of egghead row [yes, that's where my office was years ago :)], what we do on a daily basis helps connect people to disaster relief, enabling us to send donations--instantly--via text message, making collaboration possible on climate change, and much, much more.
I heard something on NPR this morning that shined a light on the importance of something very simple--like spell check. You can visit the NPR site
for the full article, but this idea elicited a "wow" from me on my predawn drive taking my son to school:
One reason, State Department official Patrick Kennedy told the Senate Judiciary Committee, was because someone misspelled the suspect's name after his father reported concerns about his son to the U.S. Embassy. As a result, the concerns were not added to Abdulmutallab's visa information. Kennedy said the State Department now has a version of spell-check software available to check names after visas are granted."
Lives at risk because of a misspelling? That's what it sounds like. Thank goodness the plan was thwarted and people are now looking at the situation from all possible angles. It has become a teachable moment: a big one. But it does underscore the importance of the work we do on a daily basis and shows that even those tiny, seemingly unimportant details can make a much larger impact than we may know at the time. (The Word equivalent to a butterfly flapping it's wings in China, I guess.) Something to think about, at any rate. :)