Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Snow madness

Well it happened as they said it would. Snow all night and morning stop around noon. Last I saw it had stopped.

Why is it that people are suprised by this. There is no snow removal in Richmond so hopefully Surrey is better!

We will see.

Oh and about that format? *Shrug*

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Thought of the week — Cubicles and Dinosaurs

Over the next 10 years, millions of baby boomers born between 1945 and 1965 will be leaving our workforce, unfortunately they will not be leaving as many children in their wake to make up for the mass retirement.

At first this looks to be a major issue. Let’s think about that for a moment.

This morning I was asked for assistance by one of these people let’s call him Herbert Neck. Herbert is a technological dinosaur. For someone like him even the simplest task on a computer is challenging to say the least. He is a one path user, in the sense he only knows of single methods for accomplishing tasks. He uses the Edit > Copy, Edit > Paste methodology for almost every task I take for granted. Ctrl and Alt keys are foreign to him and forget about that “new key that looks like a Swedish flag”.

This man is detail orient to say the least, needing to read whole pages of text to understand what is being displayed. There is no scanning skills present.

The tasks that this man needed help with were as follows.

· Set up a projector and laptop for a Presentation
· Insert a DVD and queue it for sharing at the meeting
· Get a couple slides from three or four separate slide shows
· Combine into an overview slideshow consisting of 14 slides

I take every step in this process for granted. I not only know how to do them but I don’t have to think about it. If I was tasked with this it might take me 15 minutes, while sipping coffee and eating a bagel. With him, it too 2.5 hours. And he still was not convinced it was all going to be fine.
Now in my world, if I were presenting something, I might worry about messing up my speech or having the correct numbers in the slide, but for him, that was second nature. He was worried if the computer might “go black”.

So it got me thinking. His meeting is over at 12 noon. His slides were prepped (but not compiled) yesterday. So really in 4 hours he accomplished or three tasks missing every phone call and not responding to emails. In the time it took me to write this post I have completed 10 tasks and answered 4 emails. I answered a call from my wife. And I never missed a beat. Switching applications and grabbing note paper when needed.

Now I am not suggesting that Herbert is the norm for the age group I am speaking about, he is exceptional, or that I am somehow better than him. But I was left wondering...

I can complete hundreds of computer and technology related tasks a day, great. But of those tasks, with all my multitasking how much attention to the details am I possibly paying. I would hope enough, but probably not. However Herbert, can formulate plans so complex that they shape the very fundamentals of human thought. And cover every base 10 times over. Now that is something.

We work in two very different fields, mine being web development and design, and his more a business analyst type role. But our computer/tech challenges or tasks are virtually the same. Print this, read this, copy this, post this, save that, read that, answer that.

Could my generation’s efficiency in completing these tasks make up for the disparity in the workforce?

There will definitely be a quality vs. quantity issue, but will the fact that it takes my generation 5 minutes vs. his 1 hour to overcome a challenge faced with the tools make up for the extra time I will need to formulate and find solutions to the overall business need?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Tuesday Talk Back — Slapstick Politics

When reading the following post, Slapstick Politics: More Than 650 Scientists Dissent over UN Global Warming Report by Julian Dunraven, I could not help but agree.

No matter what side of the fence you are on with the global warming debate, you have to agree that science is the method for finding the truths.

Politics entered the science stage a long time ago, but there has been few topics where the science can be this economically damaging to the "big guys". In a world driven by greed, it is little surprise they have gotten involved.

Science can prevail and the truth is achievable but only if the people get off their asses and learn to tell the difference between real science and political positioning.

As I said in a previous post. The earth is resilient. It will survive, whether it be through warming or cooling till we all die. All we can do is make sure we aren't killing ourselves, and the path to that is Science.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Thought = Madness 3.0

I have decided to change things up a built. Now is a good time as I have virtually no readers. The online diary thing is no longer working for me. So when thinking of a new direction I returned to the original concept of T=M.

Thought = Madness, throughout history our world’s greatest minds have been an eccentric bunch, from Einstein to Socrates, and more recently Chomsky to Dawkins. Earth’s real thinkers were regarded by most of their peers are ‘different’ or ‘crazy’.

The reason for this is twofold, one because the very nature of a great thinker was to question the “Norm”. Look beyond belief and obtain glimpses of things the current ‘realities’ do not allow for. It is this essence that I aim to capture within these pages. Two, a bit of the classic genius syndrome .

I am by no means suggesting that I am one of the world’s great thinkers but instead put forth that there is a little of that greatness in each and every one of us. We are born with it. Unfortunately it is beat from us as we age, and some people choose to shut it off altogether. It is a common perception that imagination is not worth anything but it is that same trait that saves corporations from failure, or countries from destruction. We even have a cliché regarding it.
Think outside the box.

To capture ones imaginings reign them in and use that skill as a tool is one of my greatest quests. To prove my teachers wrong when they question my abilities and claimed I had my head in the clouds. My head was in the clouds because those said clouds are really interesting. Frankly I couldn’t have cared any less to think about the text book thoughts. Those thoughts have been thought so many times that there is nothing else to learn from it. If I ever need to know that information I know it is in a book and ready for me to use. What about the information not yet in a book. Not yet conceived. I think that is where the magic happens.

So the new format will play out something like this:
  • Monday – Highlight last week’s comments and respond
  • Tuesday - Talk back (Highlight thoughts around the blogosphere)
  • Wednesday - No posts (Workday to prepare topic for thought of the week)
  • Thursday - Thought of the week ( with homework for readers to formulate debates/ideas on a particular subject)
  • Friday - Free thought
  • Weekend post – Free Thought

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Earth in all its glory

Earth The Biography, the next offering in the BBC's documentary library is a facinating look at just how special and unique our planet is.  I highly recommend this film.

Movies like these always seem to bring back the prespective of the enormity of our world and fact the humans existance is very insignifigant.  

The cars we drive give off exhaust sure.  

But nothing like mother nature spews all over her self every few thousand years.  

Our world is heating up.  It will likely get hotter.  But then another change will happen deep within the core of the planet and we will all be complaining about the 60 below winter that last 10K years.

I mean yes humans do polute no doubt.  But I am pretty sure something as powerful as earth can fight back.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Congratulations Gus Greeper! - My vote counted

Congratulations to Guss Greeper voted by her readers as Runner up in the category for "Best personal blog".

I know Gus personally but I will mention that I have read her blog for a long time and she deserves the award as she literally and figuratively puts her heart and soul into this medium.

Keep going Gus as I know your reflection on depression and living with it, rings true to a lot of sufferers.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Empty thoughts of an endless mind

My brain hurts. It is too full of imagination.

I have been referred to as a tap with no valve. I think and think about the what if’s… I grew up on it. For years almost the only thing I ever thought about was making life into a Sega master system game. I forgot the most important part of that equation. Me doing it.

Today I still struggle with this. One day I have the best idea, only to have a better one the next day, so I let life pass only thinking about the what if.

I need a valve. Something to throttle the flow or even better let that flow power the underpowered part of me. The do’er.

Can you be my valve?

Friday, December 05, 2008

Heat is taken for granted

I woke this morning to find out our central heating had died. I don't know what happened but I do recall last night at 10:30 (though it felt like the middle of the night) I was awakened with a call from the psycho under the stairs. Complaining of smelling fire.

It wasn't till this morning that I realized what it all meant. It looks like our house will be cold for a couple of days until we get it fixed.

I sit here now and contemplate that hearing the crazy lady talk about fire held no weight for me I simply rolled over and went back to sleep. Sounds a bit dangerous, but after being awakened by said woman on a number of occasions for things like her meds becoming magnetic and the pills sticking together (She however could not get the meds to display this phenomenon under my direct observation). I may be jaded.

The point is. Our house could have burnt down and I ignored the warning signs.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Another day, another month, another year has gone by.

Interesting the fact that a year can pass in the time you were meaning to write a blog post. That is beyond fade, that is pure and utter death. Well I raise the old Zombie.

A year makes you smarter. It's days filled with complexifications and simplifications it all rounds out to that same old thing. A year. 2008 was a year of change and now sitting clearly in it's wane I ponder the question. What really happened this year?