“If anyone knows the joys and sorrows of managing software development projects, it would be Linus Torvalds, creator of the world’s most popular open-source software program: the Linux operating system. For more than 20 years, Torvalds has been directing thousands of developers to improve the open source OS. He and I sat down to talk about effective techniques in running large-scale distributed programming teams – and the things that don’t work, too.”
Interesting example of systemic constraints and redesign:
“When Michigan State University wanted to serve more locally grown produce, Mike Passorelli’s basil would have been ideal. He grows it in a greenhouse two hours west, and labels it organic gardens. But the school can’t buy directly from tons of farms; that would be an organizational nightmare. So in 2007, it asked its food supplier, Sysco, to provide. That turned into a lesson on just how complex our nation’s food system is: To distribute local food, Sysco had to first spend three years restructuring its produce division in Michigan–a feat it’s now reproducing nationwide.”
“…To state this as clearly as possible: The four American companies that have come to define 21st-century information technology and entertainment are on the verge of war. Over the next two years, Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google will increasingly collide in the markets for mobile phones and tablets, mobile apps, social networking, and more. This competition will be intense. Each of the four has shown competitive excellence, strategic genius, and superb execution that have left the rest of the world in the dust.”
Good report. Used a sliver in my Active Information post.
“In June 2011 the Economist Intelligence Unit conducted a global survey of 586 senior executives, sponsored by SAS, to look at the state of big data, along with the organisational characteristics of companies that are adept at extracting value from data. It also explores the most challenging aspects of data management…”
“…And sure, we’ve heard all of this before. All those data management activities that get head nods, lumped into architecture and COEs (read: overhead) and then get resource gutted as soon the economy gets challenging, or a “business critical” project comes along.
But, here’s the thing. According to the EIU research, the organizations that have actively, consistently invested in data management fundamentals are reaping more than business benefits…”
I preach simplicity in architecture everyday, just not so eloquently…
“Tracing the Zen Aesthetic, what sets shibumi apart as a powerful design ideal is the unique combination of surprising impact and uncommon simplicity.
It entails achieving maximum effect through minimum means, which, it turns out, is a universal pursuit that takes many forms: artists and designers use white or ‘negative’ space to convey visual power; scientists and mathematicians and engineers search for theories that explain highly complex phenomena in stunningly simple ways.
What these various forms all have in common, and what shibumi has at its core, is the element of subtraction.
Not only is the thought of subtracting something in order to create value a very different way of thinking (neuroscientists have shown using functional MRI scans that addition and subtraction demand different brain circuitry), it figures centrally in Zen.”