Last year 14 year old Domanik Green hacked into his school computer in Florida. Did he alter exam answers? Did he meddle with pupil’s grades? No. He changed the school computer’s wallpaper. His reason was simple; he wanted to annoy a teacher he didn’t like.
Some people interviewed after Brexit admitted voting Leave because they were annoyed, wanting to make a point, and they were alarmed at the result. The result has bred high levels of uncertainty and alarm at an unknown future with warnings of doom and calamity looming.
Domanik faced criminal charges for a third degree felony with a maximum sentence of up to 5 years imprisonment and a $5000 fine. All he wanted to do was make a point.
GETTING THE RIGHT DESIGN
- Things change.
- Change has consequences.
- We are not necessarily able to control change, but we can influence it.
Whether we choose to make a small change or a huge one, we should think about WHY we are doing it. What might be the unintended consequences? Domanik probably thought he might be banned from computer access, it is unlikely he considered he might face criminal proceedings.
The great thing about Domanik’s story is that his actions highlighted weaknesses in the school IT policy – he watched his teacher log in using his surname as a password, and apparently other students knew several teacher passwords. So another unintended consequence of his hacking activities was the overhaul of the school’s IT security.
Change can have positive side effects:
- Opportunities for reflection
- Opportunities for invention and innovation
- Opportunities to improvise and improve
A final thought – How can you influence change, whether it has already happened because of external forces, or the changes that you want to make yourself?