on being a technology nomad…

I have a dear friend that calls herself the nomad of technology. I was there, at the meeting the day she told an entire group of people that. They all stared at her like she was crazy. “What,” they asked virtually in unison, “is a nomad of technology?”

“One who wanders the sands of change and finds the right granule of sand, the only grain of sand that solves a problem.” was the answer.

Imagine, standing in front of a sea of sand seeking just one grain. Just the right one, that in finding it ends your journey. It seems so fitting, so perfect a mantle for what it is I sometimes do. My friend is along the same path, the same journey so at times we stop when our paths intersect, and we ponder that. Not the intersection of paths, those often happen, rather the single grain of sand we seek.

It is, by the way, never the same grain of sand. We, each in our way, seek only the perfect grain of sand for the perfection of the thing we are polishing. Feverishly trying to get genies out of lamps!

I hear people frequently, those who eloquently stand and deliver great statements. Tears are streaming down their faces as they portend of being touched by greatness. Changed, forever, they proclaim by technology. They are not those seeking sand. They are the ones who are blinded by the sunlight, and instead erect giant tents and send others out to find the sand. Why? They do not see the grains, only the sea only the undulating surface of the sand.

“Find me,” they shout “the perfect grain of sand!” But what do you need it for? What does that grain of sand fit?

“I want it to run in the cloud.” They reply. As if running something in the cloud removes all the complexity from moving. It is easy to simply pick up your systems and drop them into the cloud.

“I want my sand in the cloud!” They say again. So, I take a handful of their sand and throw it up into the sky.

“There,” I say “It was, your sand, in the cloud for a moment.” But there is so much missing from that dream, that reality. Nomads know that cloud is simply one oasis in the desert. One place to stop and there are many oases to see. They sit there in the sand, each one offering some semblance of what is possible.

My throwing your sand into the air though that isn’t what you wanted, is it? You want cloud applications. But, you don’t have the budget to rebuild them, do you?

So let’s randomly throw your sand up again and whatever sticks as is in the cloud, is in the cloud. The rest we have to talk about!

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Of the lost tribe of Technology nomads