It has been said that computers are great at generating questions. They just can’t figure out the right question. Engineers are problem solvers. That is 99% of their education. Thing is—are they solving the right problem?
Businesses have adopted the open office architecture for many years. It solves a business cost problem—get more people per square foot. They publicly justify it, though, as solving the people collaboration problem. But they create a people productivity problem. The signal v noise blog from BaseCamp called Library Rules
[https://m.signalvnoise.com/library-rules-how-to-make-an-open-office-plan-work-f9f6d69a2d4c] proposes an interesting solution. The open office has existed for centuries. And it works fantastically. It’s called a library. Check out library rules for your open office dilemma.
My grandkids naturally collaborate on iPads with Minecraft.
Solving technology problems is a lot of fun for engineers. They look at everything as a technology problem. But then there are problems that are not technology. Such as people problems. Take a look at Facebook’s problems right now. They are not technology; they are ethical.
A generation of engineers have worked hard at solving process control problems. I reflect on a chat I had with Schneider Electric process automation leaders Gary Freburger and Peter Martin about solving business problems in addition to technology problems.
What you fill your mind with is what you become. You can spend your life listening to bubble gum for the brain or stuff designed to stir up your emotions–or, you can fill your mind with positive thoughts and material designed to teach and expand you.
I listen to podcasts. At least an hour a day. I just finished one that is a must-listen. (Of course, other than mine 🙂
This is the podcast of Tim Ferriss (4-hour Work Week, Tools of the Titans, etc.). He just interviewed George Raveling in the most fascinating conversation I’ve heard in years.
Learn about his reading habits and how he takes notes. He gifted Ferriss with a number of books including one of my favorites–Eric Hoffer’s The True Believer-Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements. I read it in the mid-60s and the ideas have formed much of my outlook. He wrote it in 1951, but it is just as relevant today.
Raveling was the first black basketball head coach in the PAC 8 (later PAC 10) at Washington State and then the first black head basketball coach in the Big 10 while at Iowa. Later he coached at USC. He became Global Director of Sports Marketing at Nike and was instrumental in signing Michael Jordan and beginning the Air Jordan dynasty.
He was born in Washington, D.C. and essentially orphaned at age 13. He tells the story of getting into a Catholic school, his many mentors, and how he wound up on the podium during Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech.
For your own personal growth and development, you need to listen to this.
A couple of quotes:
“I’ve always had this theory that, if you help enough people get what they want, you’ll always get what you want.”
I’ve published another podcast. Despite the many dystopian views of technology, automation, and robots in the future, it is human decision making and leadership that determines what will happen. Gaurav Bhalla’s “Awakening a Leader’s Soul” teaches a different perspective on leadership.
You can subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, or any other podcatcher. You can also subscribe to my YouTube channel and get the video edition. If you like my thoughts, please give me a good rating on your source.
Some people have told me that they prefer the YouTube versions of my podcasts. Not sure why. Here is the latest one. 173-Digital Twins and the Internet of Things. Discussing trips to San Diego and the Industry of Things World event (Internet of Things, Mindsphere from Siemens, OPC UA) and Siemens Manufacturing in America (university students, simulation, PLM, digitalization, cyber-physical systems, blockchain).
You can subscribe to the podcast version on Podcasts (iTunes) or on Overcast or wherever you find podcasts. Or click the podcast button on this website. Or click here.
The recent ARC Industry Forum attracted a record attendance affording writers and analysts like me more opportunities for meetings than there was time. Themes included collaboration, new edge devices, open automation, and many cool digital products.