A thought for the day…is that light an oncoming train?

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What is that shining light ahead?

You know I’ve heard that adage since I started in the IT world (don’t worry the oncoming light is not a train). It seems strange to talk about on the oncoming light is a train or isn’t a train. It could be (based on a number of movies I’ve watched where there was a dark tunnel, people and a light):

  • A UFO
  • A car riding on the railroad Tracks
  • Actually a train
  • Two boys with a flashlight
  • a railroad pushcart with a  lantern in the front (fixed so it doesn’t swing it gives it away if the lantern is swinging)
  • A jet aircraft
  • A beat up taxi cab fleeing a train
  • A beat up taxi cab fleeing a jet aero plane
  • A beat up taxi cab fleeting a UFO

All of these have a number of connotations that aren’t always better than an oncoming train. In fact a couple of them are trains. So why do we use that analogy (and I am as guilty of it as the next guy).

Is it because the reality of where we are conjures up all the oncoming things that will ultimately smash us? Do we so fear the light that its very oncoming presence forces us to imaging something else is coming?

Its just a thought…

 

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The seeker seeks what has long been sought…

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I seek a spiritual energy that I cannot find. Something that is missing from where I stand but that I know to be within my grasp. I seek an equilibrium. A moment of stasis within the confines of bottle. I am seeking solitude in the company of strangers.

The first line from a seeker.

Ok maybe its more than one line.

It is a moment that many of us are family with. When we realize that what we know really isn’t what we are. That we know things that are separate from us as humans. We know things that separate us from other humans.

How do we rekindle that connection?

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Why is it so important to me?

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Loyalty and Trust what do they mean?

I struggle with those words and have for years. To me they are very much the same thing (you are loyal to those you trust and vice versa). Lately I find myself getting them confused more and more.

So I separate them now. Trust is what you earn for the short term, Loyalty is what you earn for the long term. There are a number of people over the years who have earned my loyalty and I remain loyal to them to this day. They are good friends or were great bosses and frankly I have given them my loyalty because they earned it. Trust I’ve come to believe is less about the long term loyalty and is more transient.

A friend of mine calls it flipping the bozo bit. But for me the bozo bit is much lower in the transport layer (well below either trust or loyalty). That is why when I feel like people I trust don’t trust me I start to question my own loyalty to them. That causes me all sorts of heart burn and personal pain.

So why is it that important to me?

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More Communication Patterns

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In the quiet of a railway station (with apologies to Paul Simon)

Over the years I have talked about communication a number of times. Its years now in my blog rather than months or a year. That in and of itself is simply amazing. Roughly 10 people read this blog every day. Another 25 or so read my other blog every single day so I am communicating with someone and its not just myself.

Communication is the two way street where we find ourselves trying to connect with another persons ideas. It really isn’t as easy as people think. I know a number of highly successful people who frequently say “that person needs to come to me.”

Question 1, is there ever a situation where someone should come to someone else? Yes, but that is a hierarchy thing. The person in question (come to me) believes they are more important than the person coming to them. Its an interesting paradigm in communication as it never works well.

Question 2, its ok for me to point our your flaws but please don’t mention mine as you are most likely wrong. This is an interesting communication issue that crops up frequently where someone is happy to tell you what you did wrong, but they don’t want you to tell them what you did wrong.

These two little issues derail more conversations than any number of other issues (although there are a few issues that in fact derail things even more). I have thought about these for a long time and don’t really have an answer, I’ve just noticed the negative nature of the pattern.

The solution has to come from the person with the pattern.

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When don’t we use technology? A rambling…

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The Northwest Passage of Software

(or why can’t we all just get along)

A solution moves a business problem from “business” to a process that will solve the problem. It is a misconception that it must always be technology that is used for the solution. We have a modern world where technology is often a good fit for the overall solution, but sometimes it isn’t.

Watchmakers with precise parts and specific goals for those parts are a good example of something that technology can replicate (you can always buy an inexpensive technology driven digital watch) but can’t replace. A watch from a craftsman fits on your wrist just a little “smarter” than others do.

But technology is replacing the watch. When I was a kid I couldn’t wait to be old enough to have a watch. Now, more and more people rely on their cellular phones as their “time keeper. As someone who travels I have to say I frequently use my cell phone now for local time, and my watch to keep tabs on my “home time.”

The interesting reality of this is technology can replicate the watchmaker but in the end can’t replace him or her. It can however, over time change the paradigm so that the by hand solution becomes too expensive for every day consumption.

Still there remains a need for the expensive watchmaker to create the timepiece rather than the watch. A non-technology solution or innovation.

So assuming that the postulation above is correct there are solutions that don’t require technology. Any number of overall solutions and process refinements that do not require an application of technology to create them. Then we have to argue what technology is.

  • If you use a computer to design a solution without technology, doesn’t in fact the solution have technology in the design process?
  • Light bulbs and electricity are technology (well they were considered that in the dawn of their creation now we assume they are there).
  • What is technology?

That question is one that will keep me looking for the Northwest Passage of Software. Our loose coupling of “technology-solutions-business problems-non-technical solutions” is starting to unravel.

Even that wonderful watchmaker uses technology to manually put together the watch. The question I guess is, when don’t we use technology?

.doc

I am, I am Sandler Boggs

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I’ve started on Volume III of the poems of Sandler Boggs for those of you interested. I am digging around in my collection of old poems to include a few older ones in this collection (I only did two older ones in the last one). Its interesting to see the aging of someone who writes poetry. It goes from angry (“do not go gentle into that good night. Rage, Rage against the passing of the light”) as Dylan Thomas said. Or the poem by Robert Burns (“The best laid plans of mice and men”). Poetry is a music that touches you. It is the music of words.

Poetry as the music of words

Which is why when I write down my little nibbles of consciousness I do so often while listening to specific music. The beat of the music carries into the poetry giving it depth and breadth and an expression that is native to the words but follows the pattern of the music.

Great musicians are poets as well often. If you read some of the lyrics of Neil Young you will feel the native energy of poetry, that when the music is blended in you get a song that changes things or speaks to you on many levels. The first being the calming affect of the music, the second being the rhythm of the poetry.

I used to write poetry for my wife, but she doesn’t care anymore. She actually doesn’t even read this blog which I guess is sad and happens in marriage over time. People stop being interested in the world around them, accepting it as fait accompli rather than trying to change it.

Which by the way, is the way of poetry. Poetry is the rhythm of change. It is the clashing of the conscious and unconscious mind in a way that sits on the edge of your brain for awhile. You stew over poetry and frankly find different meanings in the words each time you read them.

So to those who went before me, I salute the memories you have given me. I do not wish to go into that good night. I wish my poetry to rage, rage against the quiet silence that comes when the candle is blown out.

I am a poet. I am Sandler Boggs.

 

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The power strip blog

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I’ve been traveling via airplanes for most of the past 12 years. In and out of airports and rental cars a lot during that time. In the old days a few of us carried multiple devices and knew where all the plugs ins at various airports were. Then various companies began adding power strips to the airport so that you could recharge. Smart phones (which have less battery life than the old cellular phones.

So now it’s the mad scramble for power. Or perhaps more along the lines of he who has the power strip is king.

Then I started thinking about the power systems and airports of the future. In fact my mind initially raced to the concept of universal power (all devices powered by a power source that is shared) but realized that would probably cause cancer. So the reality is that charging stations will continue to exist. But I wonder if the airline of the future will include charging stations in every seat as a convenience or will airlines continue to charge extra (business class, first class etc.) for the power systems?

Or perhaps you can join a charging club that offers you free wi-fi and free charging as part of your membership. These could be located in airports or virtually anywhere in the world. It could be the “Charge Club” for travelers. You could even include more formalized traveling services with this as well:

Opportunities:

  • Device Charging
  • Wi-FI
  • Movies
  • Cloud Storage
  • Cloud Backups
  • Local Storage (in the store) that would move to your cloud backup account
  • Transition services (so you can have a copy of your presentation etc)

The beauty of this solution is you would only need an application and a kiosk to do this. The Kiosk could sit anywhere and offer a set number of people the chance to recharge their devices, download media and complete the other listed tasks.

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