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

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Entries from January 2016

Wasting Time and Wasting Time

January 28th, 2016 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Sometimes the best use of time is wasting it and the most wasteful use of time is working hard. Here is a story I heard many years ago: Story Two computer programmers came to work. They both worked hard and programmed for six straight hours to the point of exhaustion. The first […]

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Tags: Fable · Fatigue · Work

The Default Choice

January 25th, 2016 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Given a choice made for us or us making our own choice, we choose the default. A recent experiment showed that people will eat fruit instead of french fries if fruit is the default choice. This experiment was not done on sophisticated, health-conscious adults but on kids. Uh, well, there must be […]

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Tags: Change · Choose

Assumed Outcomes and Dietary Guidelines

January 21st, 2016 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips We often assume desired outcomes when recommending practices. It often helps to know your desired destination. Once again, our government recently issued dietary guidelines. Some hailed the guidelines while others went as far as to say that our government officials were bribed. How else could they issue such bad advice? Perhaps those […]

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Tags: Management

The Paramedics Rule

January 18th, 2016 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Don’t do anything that you can’t explain to the paramedics. I learned this rule at a workshop held by author and consultant Jerry Weinberg. We were learning how to do simulations or exercises in seminars. You didn’t want to do anything that would accidentally break any bones or cause other things that […]

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Tags: Choose · Excuses · General Systems Thinking

Don’t Connect to the Silly Internet!

January 14th, 2016 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Governments worldwide are grappling with how to make their infrastructure safe from hacking. The solution is trivial. Everyone is afraid that their SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition) systems are being hacked (here is one story of many). Bad people will cause dams to overflow and sewage to be poured into drinking […]

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Tags: Government · Security

Lie to Everyone but Me

January 11th, 2016 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips If someone could overcome the scientific and logical barriers to backdoors to encryption systems, they would still face one of trusting liars. Many of our elected representatives want our technology companies to build encryption systems with “backdoors.” (Here is a link to one story of such.) These magical backdoors would permit the […]

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Tags: America · Communication · Engineering · Government · Privacy · Security

Education Returns to the 1700s

January 7th, 2016 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Government-operated schools are failing in the US. The plutocrats are returning to the 1700s by creating their own schools just for their own kids. Government-operated schools are failing us. I don’t need to link to stories about that. There are, of course, exceptions here and there. One of the best indicators of […]

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Tags: Economics · Education

Writing to Learn

January 4th, 2016 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Not sure what you want to say? Start writing about the topic, and you will probably learn what it is you want to say. William Zinsser once wrote a book with the same title as this blog post. That book is better than this blog post, and the two have slightly different […]

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Tags: Writing