“The holy grail of virtual reality, the one that’s always been out of reach until now, is presence.” – Chris Dixon
I got a kick out of reading that quote in a piece Chris wrote about virtual reality (VR), because this is also one of the holy grails of BPM. Why? because presence is at the heart of doing task management and SLAs right. With presence, you can get help form a colleague when they’re available – or a different colleague when they’re not – without you having to figure out who is and is not available. Your request for approval is routed to someone actually available to approve it first. Heady stuff for task management and efficiency gurus.
Of course, in VR terms, presence means something deeper:
In the VR community, “presence” is a term of art. It’s the idea that once VR reaches a certain quality level your brain is actually tricked — at the lowest, most primal level — into believing that what you see in front of you is reality. Studies show that even if you rationally believe you’re not truly standing at the edge of a steep cliff, and even if you try with all your might to jump, your legs will buckle. Your low-level lizard brain won’t let you do it.
One of the great challenges for BPM in the future will be visualizing process-context effectively as the baseline expectations for visualization dramatically improve. Perhaps the most interesting visualizations will be domain specific rather than process-generic.