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Showing posts from August, 2015

Explaining my Title

I believe I got the quote from Cory Doctorow, and he credited a designer who's name I've never been able to find or credit, so feel to let me know if you know the source. But the quote as I remember it is this:

"The default state of technology, any technology from stone axes to modern computers, the default state of technology is 'broken'."
It's true, too; technology as a definition is something that is created and thus must be maintained. The axe is possibly the earliest and easiest example: axes that aren't sharp are spectacularly bad axes. For really, really long time we survived on technology and tools that were only moderately more complicated than our own fingers and teeth, and thus technology was relatively easy to maintain and manage, but still: a dull knife is a failure mode. A snapped bowstring is a failure mode. And it requires time, attention, and effort to keep the technology of life out of failure mode and in a usable condition. And this…

The Question of Sheets (Or: all Metaphors are Faulty)

Think of your business as a bedroom -- let's say you're a homeowner and you're looking to rent out your spare bedroom on AirBnB or something like that (we'll leave the troublesome methodology of companies like AirBnB or Uber for some other day when I have the ability to produce TWO multi-thousand-word rants about business decisions). Your bedroom is a business, and your production environment is the bed -- mattress (front-end), box-spring (back-end), bedframe (infrastructure). Your Operations team is the woman who changes the sheets (product release), and this is where things get tricky.

If you're running a shady, quasi-illegal operation out of your spare bedroom, the woman who changes the sheets is probably you, and you're probably not a professional housekeeper. You just want clean sheets that keep the mattress from getting horked up by the weirdo from Brooklyn with the Macbook Pro who leaves beard trimmings in the sink. In this case, you do what any reasonab…