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The failure of personal computers to penetrate the office, engineering, and home markets as rapidly as many observers expected is a mystery to many in the industry. This failure is argued to be the result of a dissonance between the evolution of computer software toward placing decisions directly on the user, and the general trend in society toward services, intermediation, and division of labour. Suggestions of types of software products which are in harmony with the overall trends are made.

Editor: John Walker