Matt Delman was the first to reply, and he requested monkeys.
The first thing I thought of was this news piece on orangutans using iPads. I know, right? It's kind of cool to think this technology could help animals have a better quality of life. Oh, Steve Jobs, did you know you'd be helping monkeys?
But then I can't help thinking, dude, a monkey can use an iPad. That's one seriously user friendly interface. Like, what if there's someone out there who can't figure out an iPad? Hmm. Except I doubt that, because my toddler could use it just fine as well. It's basically the most accessible computer EVER.
Even a monkey could use it! Haha.
But accessibility is an interesting thing, because it gives the illusion of expertise. Just because a monkey can use an iPad doesn't mean that monkey knows much about computers, networks, and technology in general. My husband is in tech support, and I can't tell you how many times he comes home frustrated about people claiming they KNOW HOW TO USE COMPUTERS (I use caps because I imagine them saying this in a very loud voice.). And yet here they are calling tech support, because their website isn't working like they want it to. Hmm.
See, the thing is, computers have become kind of like the English language to people. You hear it all the time—I KNOW how to speak English, so of course I know how to write. People think just because they can use Word, email, and Facebook that they know how to work a computer, when really it's those clever programmers who've made computer technology accessible enough that the average person CAN use a computer without having to deal with code and databases and networks and whatever else (I don't actually know—but at least I KNOW that I don't know.).
So I don't know what I'm really saying here. Don't be the monkey with the iPad? Don't confuse accessibility for real understanding? Hey, it was a random topic, we're lucky I got this far sounding moderately intelligent.
I guess if we're going for the writing bent I could say that knowing how to speak English is like being a monkey with an iPad (oh dear, that sounds both hilarious AND insulting). I mean, just because you can talk doesn't mean you have a complete mastery of writing and storytelling. There is much, much more to it, as I'm sure most of you clearly understand. And yet the irony there is that we as writers must make our novels accessible to even the monkeys among us, especially in genre fiction.
I suppose that's why people are always saying, "I could write that better. Writing isn't that hard. Even a monkey could do it!" They've made the same mistake some make with computers—they've confused accessibility with true knowledge.
That was fun. We'll have to do this again sometime.