For the last 25 years, I have written an annual April Fools Day note in my blog, emails or Learning TRENDS. It was one of the most enjoyable pieces to write each year, with far fetched, but almost believable items about changing technology, learning innovations and “research” that was funny but not real.
When I went to write the April Fools Day Note for 2023, I hit a brick wall.
So many things are changing and evolving in our lives. Our technology is racing forward with AI, Machine Learning and Robotics. Business, the economy, the financial markets, the political divides, workforce layoffs at the same moment as the “great resignation”, global warming and evolutions in almost every part of our lives are real and now. Finding the funny, almost believable and safe is harder in 2023! I
So, I shift my 2023 April Fools Note. First, a graphic that reflects the challenge:
Next, I turned to the OpenAI ChatGPT Version with this prompt:
”Write a POEM about the difficulties of April Fools Days jokes in 2023”
In twenty twenty-three we stand, April's mischief close at hand, A world so changed, so rearranged, The jests of yore, now disengaged.
Our pranks confined in digital space, Lost are the days of pie to face, We grapple now with screens and code, To find a joke that's unbestowed.
In this age of viral fear, The jesters wade through doubts unclear, For truth and falsehood intertwine, In a dance that blurs the laughing line.
We yearn to play, to trick, to jest, But hearts are cautious, minds suppressed, In this world where trust is frail, The truth is sought, yet veils prevail.
But let not fear our wit restrain, For laughter heals the deepest pain, In twenty twenty-three we'll find, New ways to jest, fresh paths aligned.
So rise, ye jesters, rise once more, Craft tricks unseen, let laughter roar, For in this world of dire need, A touch of humor plants the seed.
A seed of hope, of light, of cheer, To guide us through this somber year, Embrace the challenge, make them smile, And leave them guessing all the while.
But, I can’t really accept the absence of sharing a few items that may tickle your brain or make you wonder or ponder with a smile:
Starting Time for On-Boarding: Research indicates that the ideal time to start a new employee’s On-Boarding is at 2:00 pm on a Thursday. They will have already had lunch, only will be in the new situation for 1 1//2 days before a recovery weekend, and their energy will be optimal.
PowerPoint for TikTok Users: We will need to share content with employees who are in TikTok Mode. Microsoft is field testing a new add-on to PowerPoint called TikPoint. The entire presentation is shown to the user in 95 seconds. And, it repeats itself automatically. If a user says the “word” TOK and moves their hand in a cool circle, TikPoint will expand and explain a given slide.
A QR Code for Food Allergies: A restaurant chain in Finland is experimenting with QR Codes to assist customers with food allergies. They can wear this small QR code on their jacket or paste on the back of the cell phone. When ordering a meal, the waiter scans the QR Code and it tells the kitchen what to avoid in the cooking process. It can even include the level of spice they desire in dishes.
Sesame Street as a Conflict Responder: With people still reacting to painful events like the school mass shooting in Nashville, one option is to use video segments from Sesame Street for an affective and effective message for children and adults. My friend Alan Muaoka from Sesame Street shares this caring video::
This one is not a joke - but a very sweet, real and powerful message of care. Thank you Alan and Sesame Street!
Joel Goodman, a lifelong colleague, has studied the power of humor in our lives. He says take the word “HAHA” and look at it’s latin root - “AHA”
May we use humor, caring, laughter, fun and wit to have HAHA and AHA moments.
Yours in Learning,
MASIE Learning Foundation
Great poem, and very nice video. The TikPoint ideas is too interesting to be a joke. It could happen. There's lots more to learn about the Open AI initiative, and they're just down the street here in Berkeley... :-) (Side note: April 1 is also the founding day for Saba Software, 1997. It wasn't intended to be a joke, just a stroke of irony, but now is somewhat long forgotten..., but still a good smile). Cheers!
I think I need to share the orientation suggestion with our HR department - it's as sensible as anything else they've tried . Thank you for including the Sesame Street clip as well. I can't imagine having to have a conversation like this with a child.