News – Real and Imagined

I thought this was a funny Dilbert comic that a colleague had by their office. 

News–My Brain Hurts.


It’s not only the 24/7/365 news cycle that make it often extremely repetitive and monotonous–where “breaking news” is the same news from 5 hours ago-sometimes even from 5 days ago. Ho hum, boring. 


But it’s also the forced news, where there always has to be a story even when there isn’t one worth taking about. Every reporter has to earn their keep too. Oh no, not another cat rescue from a backyard tree! 


Hey, in the end its ratings–that drives advertising, which of course pays the bills, so don’t hold your breath as to how long we can continue to talk about the 2016 election, the Kavanaugh hearings, the Mueller Investigation, and so on. It’s the news gifts that keep on giving and giving. 


Sometimes, it’s about getting different angles on a story–however, more often it seems like just the same old, same old–how many ways can you say, he did it or he didn’t do it?


Then there is the fake news and alternative facts, where if there isn’t a story (or one that supports the sponsor’s world filter), then maybe–just maybe–we need to create one and get people unsettled or use it for social control (remember the “Echo Chamber”). And for sure, let’s not forget the power of a good conspiracy theory! People certainly are gullible, right? 


This all reminds me of a famous saying by Lenin:

There are decades when nothing happens, and there are weeks when decades happen.


In some ways maybe it was better to just have the morning and nightly news without all the B.S. in between, because…there are decades when nothing consequential happens. 


I guess we all just are waiting around for the weeks when decades happen, but when that sh*t hits the fan, who says there will even be any news to be had. 


No wonder, Dilbert says his brain hurts–doesn’t yours? 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

We All Have Our Moods

Thought this was a funny comic strip in the office. 

Today I’m feeling {choose your poison}…


While I’m sure that we’d like to be happy all the time, it’s not realistic to think that will actually be probable or even possible.


Sure, everyone puts on the big smile.


But behind the smile is often many other feelings 


As one colleague said to me:


“People are complex!”


Isn’t that true?


Anyway, don’t beat yourself for feeling what you feel–it’s okay to be relaxing, excited, angry, sad, stressed or whatever.


Of course, that doesn’t excuse letting it get the best of you and bad behavior.


We’re adults, not children with temper tantrums.


Certainly, though, we are all human, and all feelings are fine. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Agile Doesn’t Mean Endless

So Agile development is great for iteratively working closely with customers to develop and refine information systems that are useful to them and the organization.


But even in Agile, there is a beginning and an end to the sprint planning and project management.


Taking Agile to somehow mean endless in terms of adding more and more requirements or scope creep is not what is intended. 


Agile has to be bound by common sense somewhere between what is needed for a minimally viable product (MVP) and what is achievable with the designated resources, objective, and scope. 


Good project managers always have to be sound arbiters and be willing to ask the tough questions and determine if something is truly a requirement or simply a wish list item that is out of scope (but of course, could perhaps make it in for future enhancements).


We need to understand the difference between genuine customer service and irrational project exuberance based on inflated expectations. 


It’s not a dangerous project bubble we want to create that can and will get busted, but rather a successful project that is delivered for our customers that help them do their jobs better, faster, and cheaper.  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Get Out Front Leadership

Leadership.jpeg

Thought this was a good photo of leadership.

I’ve seen other depictions of this such as when the commanding officer leads the charge of his advancing troops versus the other guy yelling orders from way behind the front lines. 

Here the idea of the leader is of being one with his people and helping pull his own weight!

Much more inspiring and effective than “the boss” who is yelling/barking orders at the others from on top the mound of work that the others are trying to move forward, and he is just adding to the weight of the load being pulled.

To really understand the mission or business, the leader has got to get out of his/her ivory tower perch and see things up close and personal on the front lines. 

You can’t really know the enemy you’re fighting or the hill your trying to take if you never even seen it firsthand. 

Leaders aren’t above the job or over the staff, they are effective when they are part of the solution (and not part of the problem) with the people that they are attempting to successfully lead. 😉

(Source Photo of Comic: Andy Blumenthal)

Should You MYOB?

Meaning Of Life.jpeg

Great Salt And Pepper comic in the Wall Street Journal today.

“What makes you think the meaning of life

is any of your business.”

Man goes to mountain. 

Man seeks to know the meaning of his existence. 

Mountain tells man to mind your own business.

I guess it’s just not that easy. 

No one will just tell us how each of us is to make our difference in this world. 

Of course, there is faith and religious teachings to guide us.

But each and every one of us must find our path to G-d and our mission to his world. 

In doing that we struggle through life’s trials and tribulations. 

It is painful at times, but we change and grow especially when the pain of what we are doing wrong becomes greater than the pleasure we gain from it. 

The meaning is in the journey and in the destination we seek. 

Our paths are not straight, but winding and hilly and not without obstacles–but it is a trek not only to the mountain, but to the very heavens itself. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Conventional “Wisdom” On Terrorism

Conventional Wisdom.jpeg


Define “Terrorism”.


If a Jew/Israeli defends themselves or their ancestral homeland, it’s illegal, deplorable, and will utterly be condemned by the United Nations and in the media. 


If a radical Islamist attacks innocent civilians and commits extreme violent acts, they’re freedom fighters, resisting occupation, or maybe it’s just workplace violence. 


(Source Comic: Andy Blumenthal)

The Robotization Of Society

Robotization

First, it’s people–just us, living and loving. 
 
Then, we welcome robots into our society for automation, industrialization, and services–they are here to help us.
 
Finally, it’s just the robots–we, the people, are obsolete, replaced, maybe even completely gone!

Think about it. 😉
 
(Source Comic: Andy Blumenthal)