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  • sarahlaliberte

I Don't Understand the Words Coming Out of Your Mouth

If there is one thing I know for certain, having been entrenched in the tech world since the mid-90s, it's that industry jargon - typically invented by marketing people to "make things easier" - sometimes does just the opposite and confuses people. And not just consumers - but industry people too. Misnomers - calling a technology something it really isn't - are common and just create uncertainty, delays, and more hashtags for us to figure out. Am I right?


At my business mastermind meeting yesterday, I was sitting with some of the most brilliant people I have ever met and found myself blessed to have the pleasure of their company and shared knowledge. I was explaining a couple of recent projects and using terms like IoT, big data, autonomous vehicles, 5G and augmented reality - cornerstone tech for my clients. And I was looking at a sea of blank faces. One woman spoke up and said something to the effect of, "you are so passionate about this and yet while you were speaking it was like you were talking a foreign language - I didn't understand at all." Huge lightbulb moment.


We talked about how when someone is an expert in their space, a "translator" is often needed to take the important information (including all the buzz words and jargon) and craft an easy-to-understand - and maybe more importantly RELATABLE - communication that someone can choose to use to take action. So, for example, one woman was talking about how she prefers simple old-school stuff rather than tech because there's less to break. Another mentioned that her elderly mother demands that her new car has all the bells-and-whistles yet doesn't know what they do. A third was trying to figure out if Alexa is really listening all the time (spying?) What is perception and what is reality? Having spent more than two decades entrenched in this space, I've become and expert at doing research, deciphering tech-speak, and translating for target audiences (from the elderly to children to tech company CEOs to savvy marketing pros).


Thank you for allowing me to share knowledge about how tech (past, present and future) is impacting the world around us. The goal of Tech Translator is to KISS (keep it simple, stupid!) and create fun, bite-sized information pieces in the formats that my readers, watcher and listeners prefer so that whether you are making a purchasing decision for yourself or your company, or around the water cooler, talking to your kids, spouse or parents, or at a business networking event, you will have unbiased and factual information which is easily recalled to keep you in-the-know.


So, my first question is: what has "everyone" been talking about in tech that has you scratching your head? I'll create pieces but know that the success of sharing useful information needs to be driven by the people who want and need it most: yes, I'm talking to you. Happy teching, my friends.


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