What was Willie Mays’s lifetime batting average? How many Oscar nominations does Leonardo DiCaprio have? When and where was Albert Einstein born? If you knew the answer to all three questions, congratulations, you just won NuLabel trivia hour! If not, you won’t have to wonder long. A quick google search will tell you what you need to know.
I chose these three questions because they were the last searches in my Google history. It made me wonder first, what normal person would have the need to know the answer to a Willie Mays question and Einstein question in a matter of five minutes, and second, what would I do if I didn’t have the power of the internet to answer my questions.
The first answer seems simple enough, the growing up in the Information Age has created a setting in which I no longer have to wonder about anything. If I get into an argument with a friend about when and where something happened, the conversation will be short lived. One of us will pull out our phones in the first minute or two, to find out who is right and wrong.
Although I could never see myself making the switch back to a regular flip phone (the March Madness Live app is just too good), I am envious of the people that aren’t constantly on their phone refreshing their Twitter feed or falling down the Wikipedia rabbit hole. Having the ability to look up every question we have may temporarily quench our thirst for information; however, this leaves little room for the imagination. I rarely say the words “I wonder if….” without a phone or computer at the ready to answer my random thoughts throughout the day, and it is even more rare for me to get through a whole article that answers my questions before a new one (question) pops in my head that I need to answer, diverting my focus.
This brings me to my second question above: what would I do if I couldn’t answer my questions in the first few seconds of wondering them? This points me to one of the things I most appreciate working for a startup company like NuLabel. It leaves me with questions that I’m not able to answer in the first few seconds of thinking them. Questions like “What is the next application for the technology,” “What markets will we be selling to in the future,” and “Where will this company be in five years” are all things that motivate me to find answers. It makes me wonder what the future is going to be like, and it’s refreshing to not have the ability to look up the answer. It makes the fast pace, relentless working style that you see around the office make sense. The idea and technology for changing the status quo is there. Now it is up to the team to see how far they can take it. This keeps you focused on the task at hand without another question popping in your head that needs to be figured out right away.
The feeling of not knowing in the Information Age seems rare, but it allows you to focus on that one place your brain is wondering to, instead of moving onto the next questions. So I challenge those that have the need for information like I do to finish a whole article before moving on to the next, and to put down their phones during their next argument. The conversation wouldn’t end after someone pulls out their phone to prove a point, but would allow us to ask bigger questions to further the discussion into something more meaningful. Instead of the question being what Willie Mays’s lifetime stats were, we would look at what baseball will be like 20 years from now. The wondering wouldn’t end with what we are doing now, but rather where we are going, both personally and professionally, and how we are going to get there.
Now I wonder if anyone reached the end of this post...
Brett Wedel, Sales Manager