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Working Up in Project Management, Systems Engineering, Technology, and Writing

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Entries from June 2009

Your Most Valuable Asset

June 29th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips The latest computer, the best desk and chair, even coffee brought to you while working – these are nice, but not the subject of this post. No, the most valuable asset a freelancer has is good health. No Work No Pay The reason I picked good health is simple: freelancers don’t have […]

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Tags: Employment · Health

Word Swapping

June 25th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips I like writing exercises – things that make me think. I came across a good one today from Kenneth Davis at He calls it the Alphabet Shift. choose a word you’ve written beginning with a letter from the first half of the alphabet. Replace it with a more effective word beginning […]

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Tags: Communication · Learning · Writing

I can’t Hug My Grandson with a Kindle

June 22nd, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips My grandson taught me about the physical limitations of eBook readers. Those limitations are real. This points me back to the best use of eBook readers – holders of workplace documentation. I wish we would go back to the projection glasses that people tried a couple of decades ago. I guess the […]

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Tags: Communication · Design · Technology

Organizational Reorganizationals, Rearragements, Synergisms…Friends

June 18th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Management actions and lingo are nice. They are not, however, as effective as simple friendship. In a recent job, we had a traditional organization arrangement where the engineers built systems and the operators used the systems. Managers divided this arrangement into smaller parts or “branches” of six to ten people by the […]

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Tags: Management · People

Rules, Exceptions, and Modifiers

June 15th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips For writers and those who name products and services: standard items have shorter names than special ones. Attach modifiers to exceptions to the rule, not the rule. Apple recently changed their line of laptop computers. As expected, the newer computers have more performance and a lower price than last year’s models. In […]

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Tags: Culture · Government · Writing

The World is Analog (and so are people)

June 12th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips The digital devices we have can dominate our lives. That still doesn’t change a simple fact – this is an analog world inhabited by analog people. We live in a digital world. Cell phones, Internet, digital cameras, digital video camcorders – all digital. At its heart, the digital world comprises only two […]

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Tags: Culture · Logic · People · Uncategorized

Rules, Regulations, and Cheaters

June 8th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips The current administration is running into all sorts of obstacles that it didn’t have during its campaign. There are countless “stupid rules” inside government. These rules were created because at some time in the past someone cheated. Cheaters are the origin of rules and regulations. The Obama administration has been criticized for […]

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Tags: Culture · Government · People · Web 2.0

One Group of Leaders is All It Takes

June 4th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips One group of leaders can ruin a decades-old organization in only a couple of years. I have seen several examples personally. Harvard University is one example in the recent news. Leadership is difficult. It seems wise to limit the power of any one group of leaders. One group of leaders can do […]

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Tags: Government · Judgment · Management

An Example of Excellent Communication

June 1st, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips I often see poor photographs of technical products on the Internet. Today I saw an excellent image that communicates much about this product from Nvidia. One of my frequent complaints about photographs of technology is the lack of scale. Someone will show their “new, smaller footprint widget” sitting on a nice, shiny […]

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Tags: Communication · Image