What do you mean by “human?”

Someone recently asked me to identify five adjectives that describe Slice. I replied with “efficient, professional, powerful, human, and comfortable.”

“Human?” Katie replied. “What do you mean by that?”

It was a good question. I’m embarrassed to say that I began my answer with an ancient history lesson.

I started talking about the first PCs in the late 70s and early 80s, and how we had to load the program disk, then eject it and load the data disk.

This information architecture – in which the user produced data files that were separate and distinct from the program used to create them – became ubiquitous. Word processors, spreadsheet programs, and database managers all used it.

And it made sense, because PCs were islands at the time. “Collaborating” meant handing someone a floppy disk.

“Collaborating” in 2020 is much different, but the original architecture – programs here, data files there – remains.

Why does this matter?

It matters because it affects your workflow. Many work and school projects involve far more than one file, which means that content writers and teams spend a lot of time hunting for files and managing the project.

But the real cost of this inefficiency – what really impedes productivity – is the tax on creative flow. Because writers are forced to interrupt their thinking, they incur high mental switching costs that prevent them from getting in the zone and producing their best possible work.

At Slice, we focus on what writers need – not computer files.

I’m not sure how many software vendors can claim that. After all,

  • Word processors were designed for typists – not writers.
  • Major vendors still rely on the legacy file system.
  • The legacy file system expects you to herd the cats that are your files.

All of which means that the tools and workflows writers employ in 2020 are over 40 years old. 40 years old!

Would someone please explain to me why software companies have created slick software studios for graphic artists, but not writers? Or groovy workbenches for programmers, but not writers? Why hasn’t anyone spent time thinking about what writers and writing teams need? Far more of us write than design or code!

Well, 40 years is long enough. We designed Slice to simplify writing workflow, to get you and keep you in the zone, and the help you produce your best possible work.

And that, Katie, is what I meant by “human.” Thanks for asking. 🙂

Photo by Velizar Ivanov on Unsplash. Thanks, Velizar!


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