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Red Dead Redemption VS Work Software (draft)

Red Dead Redemption II is one of the most highly anticipated games of the season, if not the year. It’s not hard to see why when you look at the impressive videos of the game on YouTube and lists of the extraordinary attention to detail listed in many articles. Thinking about the effort which goes into making modern computer games compared to the slow evolution of productivity software, inspired me to write a few comparisons to the game world and or knowledge work world which we use every day we go to the office or fire up our laptops in cafe’s or in our homes.


In Red Dead Redemption if you can care for your horse, it will improve.
Similarly, at work you can–if allowed–add plugins to improve your web browser.

In Red Dead Redemption you can customise your interface elements to decide exactly what to see.
At work you can choose light or dark mode, and hide or show a few panels.

In Red Dead Redemption you have sprawling vistas through which you can view your world.
At work you have the same folders and files you had in 1984.

In Red Dead Redemption you can control how you carry your gun and how you spin your chamber, not just click and shoot.
At work you can choose which part of Microsoft Office you use and whether you want to bold your text.

In Red Dead Redemption the actions of your character links through to characters you will meet in the future.
At work you can’t link inside an electronic book, a PDF or–in most cases–a web page.

In Red Dead Redemption you can interact with everyone you meet.
At work you can only interact with the text someone has created a link around or a graphic someone has turned into a button; you don’t have access to tools to take with you.

In Red Dead Redemption the sounds you hear have real meaning.
At work you only have error beeps and ‘new mail’ pings.


These are only seven bullet points but I think they go some way to highlighting some of the capabilities we need, in humorous respect to a very successful game. This is a draft. If you have something else that might fit, please tell me and I might include it in the future and list you as co-author.

There is more and this is the major reason we – so that we can be pioneers in cyberspace, building richly interactive systems to give us deeper perspectives and more flexibility in viewing the world and connect with our own thoughts.


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