The Audience Speaks

infectious emergent ideas

Of Mountains and Meritocracies Part 3

While we were planning the third trip to the mountain, we came to an ironic realization during our study of the topographical maps. Each time we got to the tundra line, we kept attempting to get across the saddle to the peak on the other side. The previous two years we were headed for the lesser of the two peaks. The second year, when the military son of the leader went charging up the hill in the blizzard, he too was headed towards a shorter peak. I still don’t know if he even made it to that peak.

That year, the plan was pretty much the same as the second year. We camped at a halfway point up the mountain, then we split into a faster and a slower group the next morning and made our way up. The significant difference being that this time, the weather was actually cooperating with us as opposed to trying to murder us with its cold impartiality. The skies were clear, the temperature was moderate and the humidity was low. This time we were prepared well. I didn’t take so much weight up with me that time. I packed things like sandwiches, chips, non perishables, and a cold pack.

However, despite our best preparations, within a few hours after we started hiking from the mid way camp, everyone in the fast group was starting to wear out. That is, everyone except myself and the leaders deaf son. As the group would stop for a fifteen minute break, the deaf, rugby playing, son and myself would sit at the head of the group ready to roll out at a moment’s notice. By the time we were about an hour from the tundra our complaints started to really get to the leader. He told us that we were old enough that he could trust us to go on up ahead by ourselves. Just us two. So we did.

It was an interesting hour or two. The deaf son was the most athletic in the whole bunch. We moved quickly for the next hour, in almost silence, and made it to just below the tundra before we actually stopped for a break. During the break the Deaf son and I communicated through a mash up of charades, lip reading, and luck. The Deaf son complained that I was moving too quickly. In his words “You skinny, you move fast. Look, I fat, (he wasn’t) I slow, I need break.” Once we were watered up and ready to go, the Deaf son didn’t have much problem at all. In fact, once we hit the tundra, he took off at as quick as the rocky terrain would allow. I could sustain a decent pace over a long time, but when it came to dead sprints, the Deaf Son definitely had me beat. I watched as he got further and further ahead. Finally, to my dread, I watched the deaf son start to head up across the saddle.

I screamed his name in vain “That is the Wrong Peak. Go the other way” I laughed at the absurd futility of the situation. He couldn’t hear me, no matter how loudly I yelled. I didn’t have the tools to convince him that we were supposed to go the other peak. “I Hate You.” I yelled, half full of annoyance and half full of the humor that remains in desperation. I was at an age that I would be exiting the scouting program, probably moving away from home for a mission and for college. This was my last chance to make it to the top of the tall peak with this group of peers. So, I did the socially responsible thing, I followed to the wrong peak.

I enjoyed the minor victory of making it to a peak, even if it wasn’t the one I actually wanted. I ate my sandwich and chips. We relieved our bladders from the peak of the mountain, enjoyed the open air above us, marveled at the sight of the valley below, our camp being completely indistinguishable from the surrounding green, then headed down the mountain. As we stumbled down the snow, we saw the rest of the fast group coming up along the path… They headed to the correct peak and made it back before nightfall…

That night it was a bit embarrassing to admit to everyone that we went to the wrong peak. It was funny to watch the leader explain to his deaf son that we went to the lower of the two peaks. The Son didn’t want to believe it. But it was true.

So… What is the moral of the story? Well, that may be another blog post. I’ll meditate on it for another few days then I’ll post my final thoughts on this metaphor of life.

 

~The Audience

Of Mountains and Meritocracies Part 2

The second time we tried to make our assent to the top of the mountain, we had planned and prepared a bit more wisely then we had for our first trip years earlier. As a troop we realized that most of our members didn’t have the stamina to make it all the way up the mountain in one go. This was evidenced by the fact that at the end of the last attempt, there was only three remaining members, two boys and a leader. This time we planned on splitting the mountain hike into a two day event. We would hike half way up and make camp for the night and then the next day we would finish going all the way up and then turn back and make it all the way back down to base camp before sundown.

Not much happened the first day of the hike, at least, I can’t remember many details of the first day hiking halfway up the mountain. About all I remember was a few moments setting camp half way up. I remember that it was cold and that it was threatening rain. I also remember that I didn’t pack particularly warm clothing. All I had was a thin jacket, t-shirt and jeans. That night I dined on something unusually fancy like couscous and eggs… That was my usual M.O. when camping, I became quite known for making simple recipes that surpassed the usual fare of ramen noodles and jerky.

After that first trip I became an odd duck in the scout troop, doing unconventional things like making couscous, packing way more than I probably should, etc… But I found some sort of zen in camping. I became incredibly focused and present, aware of my body and aware of both the danger and the detail of anything that was in front of me. I felt more alive, more touched by the cold winds and scorched by the sun in the glaring cloudless sky. I took fatigue and sunburn and gloom in stride. And because of that, no one was really surprised by how quickly I caught onto things. I was the first one to strike the stump in an archery competition, firing arrows that we made ourselves. I could group the .22 shots under a quarter very quickly. I tied knots then that I couldn’t tie now to save my life. Knowledge was always like that, Pick it up quickly, and forget it when I wasn’t using it, because I knew when I needed it I could go find it and acquire it again.

But I’m getting off track. Mostly, I want to say that the expectations had changed for me. The First time, everyone expected failure from me… This time up the mountain, everyone expected that I’d have no problem what soever. I almost feel like I became a lucky charm… Everyone wanted to stick with me because they felt like if they could stick with me, they too would make it up the mountain. But there was also a bit of sadness and regret. We wanted to make it up the mountain this time to make up for failing last time.

The next morning, we woke up in the pre-dawn glow, stoked the fire, ate our oatmeal and other breakfast foods quickly, and struck camp. By the time the morning light allowed us to see the path ahead, we were on the move. The troop split up pretty early into a fast group and a slow group. The Slow group pretty much stated that they’d be happy just to make tundra and turn back. The Fast group was jovial and immediately determined to reach the top.

However as the fast group emerged from the foliage into the open tundra we began to get weary and had to stop every hundred-or-so paces. I also began to feel very sore in my legs. They began to cramp up badly and I was having to force myself to move on. One of the problems with splitting the trip into two days is that you get really sore. If you have ever done weight lifting, you notice that if you keep a slow even pace you can generally recover enough between reps to keep going for a very long time. But once you stop and your muscles cool down, they begin to repair and become very sore. I imagine that was what was going on in this situation. Now with my new baggage of having all these expectations to live up to, and a campsite on my back, I was realizing that even I was not really prepared for this trip.

As we were stopped and taking a break, I looked out over the valley towards Pike’s Peak. What I saw sunk my heart. An ominous black cloud full of precipitation and lightning hung over the land. I pointed and nudged the leaders and started to voice a word of caution…

But they wouldn’t hear any of it, we had failed to climb the mountain once before, we would succeed this time. I watched as the cloud rolled steadily towards us, unrelenting to our prayers and hopes. Up ahead of us we noticed two other hikers nearing the saddle between the two peaks. The cloud rolled over us and headed strait for the two other hikers on the saddle. Lightning struck the mountain within a hundred yards of the two men. They had skis on and promptly shot down the snow coated side of the mountain. I felt we should quickly follow suit.

Instead we continued on up and across the saddle to a large rock under which we all huddled for refuge from the rapidly intensifying snow. In hunger, fatigue, and cold, I about passed out save for one member of the troop repeatedly jabbing me in the ribs and telling me that If I fall asleep, I wouldn’t wake up. Another member of the troop, a man destined for the military jumped up in the middle of the blizzard that was now hammering us and said, “I’m going to make it. I’ll be back.” and ran up the side of the mountain. We sat under that rock in shock, sure that this friend was going to get struck by lightning. His father was our leader and he told us that he was going to go retrieve his son. He instructed us that if they weren’t back in ten minutes, and if the storm didn’t let up, we were to slide down the mountain and go get help.

It turns out, jeans don’t slide well on fresh snow. After a few minutes waiting, we did as ordered, and turned to slide down the mountain in defeat, again. If it weren’t for that friend who kept me from falling asleep, I don’t know if I would have ever made it off that mountain because I ended up using him as a sled. He was wearing some sort of insulated nylon based wind breaker pants that slid down the snow pretty well. So I sat on his legs and we made it down the mountain, suffering only one or two wipe-outs (wherein I lost the cork on [and contents of] a bottle of jelly beans in my backpack which I was saving for the express purpose of being a celebratory snack atop the mountain peak. As well as [and more importantly] I lost the nozzle of my off-brand camel-bak water pouch, and subsequently, all the water in the pouch.)

At the base of the snow, still about two thirds the way up the mountain, we waited for signs of the leader and his son, wondering if we should rush down and contact search and rescue. Five minutes later the sky cleared, the sun came out and the leader and his son came sliding down the snow. Neither of them made it to the top of the mountain in the blizzard.

We returned to camp, cold, damp, thirsty, hungry and defeated. In a tortoise and the hare twist of fate, the slow group waited out the snow in the shelter of the trees and a few of them made it to the peak after the skies had cleared…

I’ll leave off here and return in a few days to share the story of the third trip up the mountain.

Of Mountains and Meritocracies Part 1

Growing up, I was involved in a boy scout group through my church (Incase I’ve not already mentioned, I’m Mormon, sort of… that is another story) I was never super into the whole boy scout thing. The achievements and merit badges seemed kind of superfluous and I can’t think of a single one that I earned that actually taught me anything that stuck. That and I saw enough eagle scouts who were complete dopes that I never felt the urge to join their ranks, or ever give members of their fraternity special deference over any other person. But, I really enjoyed the camping. To me, if scouts was nothing more than athletic activities and camping, it would be fantastic.

Though, I should clarify, during my years in scouting I only once went to official scout camp, and that was in the younger years, and I didn’t like it all that much. The rest of the camping was all hoofing it out in the wilderness, the more exposed to the elements, the more we had to judge cardinal directions with the sun and compass, the better. Every year we usually had one big week long campout, it was one of the few things I looked forward to throughout the year, like Christmas, or Halloween. I’d say I’d plan weeks in advance for it, but these days I have no clue if my adolescent brain was too obsessed by repressed sexual feelings to actually plan in advance for anything… and that is another story.

There are three years, three of these week long camping trips, that stick out in my memory more than the rest. They probably stick out more because I’ve always struggled with finding narratives in my life, and this string of three campouts conveniently has some narrative structure, and so when people ask me to tell a story from my life, this one typically gets picked. Who knows how much of it is true by now from all the times I’ve retold it. But I’ve been thinking about this story a little differently lately. In this story I see a bit of a life lesson, one that I’ve recently been struggling with how to communicate. But, I’ll get to that after the story of these three years.

These particular three years we went to the same campsite, at the base of a mountain somewhere in the rockies (I’m debating how much to tell because I still want to keep some anonymity here.) These three years weren’t all in a row, there was one or two years in between each instance of us camping at this particular campsite, the first starting when I was about 13 (I think).

Each year was similar in structure. During the week we would do various activities, go to shooting ranges to practice skeet shooting and archery, go on nature walks, and do more of that achievement junk I despised. But the crowning event of each of these three years was the mountain climb. Each of these three years we attempted to scale to the peak of the mountain we were conveniently camped at the base of.

The first of the three years no one thought I would make it up that mountain. I was fairly new both to this kind of camping (I think this was my first week long stint in the wilderness) and to an intensive hike like this, and I probably over estimated on the amount of food I should bring up the mountain, so my pack was a bit heavy for a kid my size. The thing was, I was a total shrimp. I was always a shrimp up to that point in everyone’s eyes, including my own. I was one of those cases where the doctors suggested hormone injections to compensate for an underactive thyroid. At the yearly physical checkup with the doctor I was always right at the bottom third development quartile for both weight and height. As far as anyone knew I was scrawny and I looked the part.

I remember saying aloud to my peers as I went up the mountain, “Eh, I’ll be happy if I even make it half-way up.” But at the same time, I didn’t really dwell on it, it didn’t emotionally bother me. I said these self defeating statements with a smile. It was paradoxical to a lot of the new age self help doctrines that are widely preached today, you are supposed to have self affirming, positive, encouraging thoughts. Yet, with my scrawny build, overpacked backpack, and happy yet self deprecating attitude, everyone was astonished as they gave up, slowed down, turned back, and ultimately got passed up by this goofy looking scrawny nerd kid in his ill fitting bright red tee shirt and jean shorts. And as each of my peers gave up and turned back, some of whom were years my superior and played competitive sports, by some miracle of ignorance, persistence, cheerfulness, adjusted expectations, or whatever you want to chalk it up to, I felt like I could do it, “I can climb this mountain.” And we almost made it…

As we passed the tundra line, there were only three of us left in the pack. There was the scout leader, a man who was known for his athleticism, his son who was my age, or a year younger, I can’t remember, who was definitely his father’s son, athletic and lacking any sort of non-competitive bone in his body, and me. We could see the peak. Even though realistically it was probably still two miles away, it looked incredibly close. I had no doubt in my mind at that point that we would make it… Till the scout leader’s son collapsed, short of breath. Victory felt within my grasp. For the first time in my life I saw myself as something other than the scrawny kid. I was going to take a new place among my peers. I was going to conquer this mountain and achieve something real, something only few would be able to accomplish… But the math didn’t work out. The scout leader was a responsible adult, and there was no way he was going to let our threesome split up leaving one of the boys alone. So, we turned back and trudged back down the mountain, a little dejected and defeated.

I was seen differently after that. I did achieve a new social status among my peers. I was now seen as somewhat unpredictable, I gained the quality of being more than meets the eye, a book not to be judged by its cover. My peer group stopped wondering when I’d fail, and started wondering what crazy surprise I had in store next. I reveled in the new way I was treated. But, at the same time, failing to conquer that mountain still bothered me, like a thorn stuck in my side.

I’ll leave the story here… It’s time for bed, and this post is plenty long enough.

~The Audience

A Never Ending Chase. What Is It Worth?

Warning: I’m about to deliver some very unpleasant theories in this post. It may also get pretty long.

I took the last few days off of my normal routine to read some books. I don’t usually do this because I linger under the misconception that reading takes too much time. Now that I’ve renewed my library card I will hopefully start dispelling this erroneous belief of mine. I already had a good crack at it after completing approximately 800 pages (a little over half was admittedly fantasy fiction) in just under a week. Now larger and more daunting books don’t seem like such a hurdle. One of the books that I read was called “In Defense of Food :An Eater’s Manifesto” by Michael Pollan. I’ll admit that the book didn’t really take me into ideological territory that I hadn’t ventured before, but it was nice to dig a little deeper into a topic that Interests me greatly (One of the criticisms I often level against myself is that I have a wide breadth of topics and paradigms in my repertoire, but very little depth into any one of them). In short Pollan’s book discusses at length the history and effects of the wholesale adoption (in America and other parts of the world) of a paradigm he refers to as Nutritionism and the Western Diet that follows from it. And then he offers some clear and comprehensible eating advice that will help an eater avoid the negative effects of the Western diet, otherwise known as the western diseases (Heart Disease, High Blood Pressure, Type 2 Diabetes, Obesity Various forms of Cancer. Etc…). The whole book boils down into a simple motto that he explains more in depth in the final section of the book “Eat Food. Not Too Much. Mostly Plants.”

I don’t want to give too much away because I think it would be more valuable for the theoretical reader of my blog to go and actually take the 8-15 hours to actually read and digest the implications of Mr. Pollan’s book. But I do want to highlight and elaborate on a point that he makes near the end of his book (literally within the last 20 pages or so). He describes the biggest challenge facing anyone who wants to follow the advice in the book. Eating a traditional diet (as opposed to the western one) often takes time. It takes time to select, purchase, plan, prepare, and sometimes even takes more time to eat. To be open and fair, this isn’t a huge step for me and my family. There are a few food allergies in my family which already preclude us from a menu consisting of anything processed, refined, designed, other than un-enriched all purpose white flour (which after reading this book we intend to move away from anyway.) But I guess it isn’t the food that is the focus of this post. The focus is time.

I hate bad analogies but I feel like america is a car with it’s breaks cut, or perhaps the driver just doesn’t care about any speed limit, perhaps there is no speed limit. As I already said this is a bad analogy. One could always ask where are we going then? Why do we want to get there? What the hell is speed analogous to? But I’m having trouble really figuring out how to convey the concept I’m experiencing. Still, I have to try. The muses demand it.

It’s like peer pressure, but more subtle. There isn’t someone standing near me and telling me I’m wrong and I need to do something different. But I can just sense that the way I do things is different from my peers, and that in this market, I’m going to fall behind in the short run because I deliberately and consciously go slow in my endeavors.

Because I take time to prepare my own food and eat healthy, I’m not spending that time online learning, connecting with people, building a brand, but in the long run I hope to avoid diabetes, heart disease, and cancer, and their associated costs.

I refuse to take on a mountain of debt for college. Because i refuse to do that, I am relegated to out of pocket community college and whatever other self learning activities I can squeeze into my already packed days. This means that I am overlooked for well paying jobs because I don’t have the bachelors paper to convince lazy HR people that I’m worth the investment.

I spend lots of time with my family, because of that I am more unwilling than usual to take a job that asks me to travel and be gone from home frequently or for long periods of time, or jobs that require 50+hrs/week. I’m sure those jobs pay better, but in the long run I hope to have a strong, vibrant marriage, and strong relationships with my future children.

I attend church weekly and pay tithing, which in the short run precludes me from jobs that would require me to work on sunday, and I’m also sacrificing an amount of money I’d rather not think about at the end of the year. But in the long run (rocky as my relationship with my church is) I feel dedicating one day out of my week to something other than work, and dedicating a portion of my paycheck to something other than the needs of myself and my family help me to keep things in perspective, break up the monotony of the daily grind, and stay conscious of my financial considerations.

In short, because I am willing to enforce professional boundaries between myself, my career, and everything else in my life, and not allow any one thing to pass those boundaries and devour the rest of my life in obsession and monomania, I inherently fall behind in the current economy, and feel the pressure.

Where does all that pressure lead? If we all succumb to those pressures what does it get us? I was at a company meeting a few years back and we met with the head honcho, the CEO of the company. The man was overweight, red faced, and talked mostly of how busy he was flying here and there meeting with all sorts of other companies and venture capital firms, and was trying his best to grow the company. Oh and P.S. you aren’t getting a raise this year, we are going to give you a performance based bonus at the end of each quarter (Temps, sorry you are excluded, and no raise for you either) and the bonus, no matter how you slice it is never going to amount to what you could have had in raises. My friend leaned over to me and nodding toward the CEO said in a muffled whisper “If I ever get to that point in life, shoot me.” Mostly he was referring to the morbid obesity… But all the same, I don’t envy the man, for all his money, he couldn’t buy health, or free time, or relaxation and enjoyment, or even save his marriage which was falling apart.

Yes, bad anecdotal evidence is bad anecdotal evidence. But here it is more useful as a way to point at something, a sense I’ve got, that we are working harder and more time than I feel we should in this modern age of plentiful technology and time saving devices. Why? Perhaps we are all looking for relevance? Perhaps we are all looking to convince each other that, yes we as human beings do deserve to eat and have a place to sleep at night. Yet for all our trying, a person can devote 40 hours a week to providing a service that (while I don’t personally participate in it) the vast majority of Western Societies use (The fast food industry, for example) and we still pay that individual less than what is required to live on, all so a select few individuals can pocket the extra money in profits. Then what do they do with that money? They either invest it in other ventures to try to get themselves more money, or They funnel some of it into charities to help out the very same poor people that work at the bottom rung of their corporations. We are schizophrenic on this point here in Western Society. We treat the average worker like shit in order to maintain profits, and then turn around and spend those profits on charity overhead in claims that each person has value and worth and that we must intervene in their lives so that they can help themselves.

What is it worth?

We keep chasing our tails faster and faster, eating poorly till we get fat and no longer have the energy to really explore beyond our own rear ends.

The Audience

Screw this Daylight Savings/Spending Crap!!!

The change in the time has thrown me all out of whack. I’m sorry dear non readers for missing the last few days. I’ve been desperately looking for something to blame for it. Was it the weekend lethargy carrying over till now? Nah. Was it the fact that Work has gotten far more intense and I haven’t even had time to think about blog posting till late at night? Possibly. Was it the time change causing my work schedule to be later in the physical day which has thrown off my circadian cycle since I’m not used to staying up when it is so dark outside, and all my instincts are now telling me I should sleep or at the very least rest because it has been a really stressful day? There it is… I Blame You Daylight Savings/Spending, whichever one it just was.

Why do we have Daylight Savings? I’m still not sure, I’ve heard it is so that power consumption can be reduced by having more daylight hours in the working day. But I know that my employers haven’t really changed their power consumption schedule. They still leave the lights on 24/7 because that is their working schedule. In my family we wake up before dawn and go to bed after dark so our power bill isn’t significantly impacted by the change over. What is the point? It just makes me feel more tired in the evening when I should be writing my NanoWrimo Novel and blogging.

Anyway… Short rant over.

No New Followers… I feel that this should be my slogan rather than a simple statement of fact. Like the No New Taxes slogan. On that note I wonder if WordPress is actually secretly programmed to drive more traffic to your website till you have 25 followers, then you are on your own. If your blog hasn’t taken off with the first 25 people who “Follow” you then you are kind of screwed on ever getting any more traffic… Good! None of you follow me or comment anyway. I’ll rant in peace and public secrecy then.

The Audience

 

How did you vote?

I’ve been asking friends and acquaintances around the lunch table at work if they would like to volunteer their thoughts and positions on the elections that just happened. The reactions were pretty typical for my state. I wasn’t really asking with the intent of writing this blog post, but there was one conversation I had with a friend that did strike my interest. I asked them how they felt about the election and they said flat out that they went right down voting for a certain third party. I get a little cautious about how much I will write about actual interactions I have with people I know, mostly because I don’t obtain permission from them to do so, and I don’t want to compromise their privacy to their opinions. So I’m not going to really go into what third party they voted for. But lets just say it is a third party I am familiar with because I often consume media that self identifies with this third party, at least in name.

So When I heard that he voted for that third party I asked him if he partook in any of the media around that party. I don’t know if in this particular case I was just not clear enough about describing the media to which I referred, but he replied that he didn’t take part in any of that brand of media. Then he indicated that he’s always voted for one third party or another and that it has just taken him a while to come around to realize that he was really just a natural member of the party which he voted for this year.

I hate to get into a “no true scotsman” argument, but I’m about to skid dangerously close to one in this post. You see, I am lazy when it comes to politics, I’ll openly admit that I hardly ever vote, and that is mostly because I rarely ever take the time to really look into the policies of the current candidates. I find it is usually a huge waste of my time because I’m end up generally appalled by what I find when I go looking into any candidate’s positions, and therefore I never find a candidate I want to vote for, just candidates who I half agree with (at best) and ultimately don’t want to vote for. Therefore, rather than voting ignorantly for stuff or candidates I’m not sure will actually benefit me and may actually harm a lot of other people inadvertently.

So when I see anyone voting the party line, and then openly admit that they aren’t all that informed on the issues, that they aren’t even all that involved in the politics of the party who they are “Unquestioningly devoted to”, or that they made their decision based on only one pet issue that they think is important now “And this party generally supports my position on that pet issue”… Well, to put it bluntly, It drives me nuts enough to write a blog post on it.

This is where the no true scotsman stuff comes in, I don’t think you deserve to have the right to be taken seriously when you say you are a member of the “Insert Party Here” and vote the party line. You may as well admit you are ignorant and can’t think for yourself. Its like my own laziness only worse, because these people are actually taking action with your ignorance, and their get out of judgement free card for their laziness is “I trust my party.”

You trust a thing you hardly understand, and hasn’t proven to reliably help you in your life.

Well, I guess it can’t be helped. Republicans have just taken both houses of congress, mostly on merit of the fact that people are generally pissed with the current government, and they don’t see any viable third option, therefore they simply vote against the incumbents where they can. And in another two years I wouldn’t be surprised if a Republican president gets voted in, then there will be two years of the Republicans stumbling along trying to push through a whole lot of stuff that the public will hate so much that two years from that the democrats will take both houses in congress again in order to stop the Republican Governmental Rampage. Follow the pattern adnauseum or till America gets economically devastated by other world powers or we finally get our act together and offer a viable third party and radically restructure our governmental, economic, and social structures.

The pessimist in me predicts that we won’t get our act together till shit hits the fan and America is on the visible verge of utter collapse, and we are forced to come face to face with the things that actually matter in this world.

The Audience.

Programming Skills Translate Well to Management.

I had the displeasure of nearly passing out with “Attending useless meeting syndrome” today. Though I did learn a few valuable things today while watching the meta of this meeting today. In particular I came to realize how applicable my skills as a programmer actually would translate pretty well as a manager. As a programmer I often have to deal with very complex systems composed of tiny individuated bits of code all trying to work together. I also understand the need for proper and efficient information and material transfer. To explain this, if I have a whole bunch of objects in my code that all need a unified piece of information, I try to make a centralized and standardized source for that information and tell everything to interface with that, rather than having each new object try to obtain that information from some other object in a long chain of information sharing. This prevents future problems when one of the objects in that chain need to be modified and someone decides it doesn’t need to hold that information any longer, well then the chain of information is broken proving that it was just a bad model to begin with. Also, then you have one physical location in memory with that information rather than multiple copies of the data in lots of memory sectors, it is just more efficient.

But now I’m getting into the nitty gritty. I know that people aren’t objects in computer code. They are far more quirky. But in some respects they have some of the same limitations, they are bad at multitasking, when coded properly they both utilize or have a limited amount of bandwidth, they both have functions that they carry out, they often shouldn’t need to know the specific details of every other worker/ object, in order to do their job. I could probably go on if I give it a bit more thought.

But you see, here is what I saw in my meeting today. There was no programmer. There was no flexible and knowledgeable leader who was working on nothing but optimizing the system. The meeting just ended up as a haphazard group of the objects all trying to sort out what each other did at the same time and no one looking from a higher up scope trying to figure out how to make the small changes to repair the data streams and make everyone’s job work better. There was also virtually no action items for anyone, least of all myself. There was no action items for me. So why was I in this meeting? It was highly disorganized, tried to generalize everyone’s specific problems and specific instances of problems, and just felt weird.

I kind of feel like each company should almost have their own scrum team dedicated to IRL programing done on the actual workflow to make tools to tweak things here and there to make them more modular, compartmented, and flexible. Lean manufacturing was a good start, but Programmers have been doing it better in their own field for years.

The Audience