Part of: Dreams of Progress exhibition.
Productivity Future Vision 2019, Microsoft Office Labs, USA, 2009 – 6 min.
“While the future is impossible to predict, we are constantly looking forward, analyzing trends, and gathering insights to gain a deeper understanding of how investments in computer technology can help us live more productive, fulfilling, and sustainable lives. We welcome you to join us in this journey.”
“Productivity Vision of 2019” by Microsoft (2009) showcases some telecom technologies 49 years after the video from At & T’s. The format of the video is less patronising – the voice over has disappeared and the characters of the story are more subtle. But, has the message really changed? The video does not pretend to be a vision for everyone. It focuses instead on the lives of wealthy upper-class people. The video does not try to build a new ideal; the 2019 world depicted by Microsoft is grey and sterile. A less directive vision of the future bears both pros and cons. Unlike its predecessors, this video does not attempt to impose ideals. However, by not addressing the wider issues, they become all the more prominent. The managers shown on the video do not seem to enjoy themselves that much. The last scene of the video is set in a garden on top of a building. The woman is happy enjoying the simple pleasures of nature. But, not everyone can have a garden on the roof of a building in a highly populated city. She looks at the life of her daughter with nostalgia. Her life seems to be very challenging and submerged by information.