Standardized for Your Information

Published by Lex on

Standardized parts were an important element of the industrial revolution.

Standard parts and standard processes lead to consistent results when dealing physical objects. This led to the success of the assembly line.

The information age doesn’t really have standardized elements. Sure the bits and bytes are pretty standard, but the content they contain varies pretty widely. While there are communication protocols for moving the bits and there are linguistic protocols to more clearly convey meaning, it is much more limited.

Standardized products may suffer from blandness, the efficiency benefits are a good tradeoff.

With information standardization, you may gain some simplicity and clarification at the expense of nuance. Many disciplines create their own simplified vocabulary to make communication clearer. Doctors, lawyers, athletes and many others create their own specialized language.

The purpose is probably two-fold:

Simplify communication with others in the field
Signal to others that these disciplines have specialized knowledge.

But ambiguity and creativity require additional non standard language. The ability to make the non standard and ambiguous more clear is a much needed skill as the world gets more and more specialized.