all bits considered data to information to knowledge

20Jun/130

Finding your natural habitat @work: It’s what you do in your free time that counts

When comes to computer programming there are two broad categories of companies - these that produce IT products, and those that consume IT  products(with countless variations in-between).

The skills set for each is somewhat similar yet there's enough difference to apply different criteria to interviewing candidates:

  • A company that lives and breathes technology will be looking for candidates with similar traits. 
  • A company which primary business is anything but - building materials, food, clothes - will be looking for a person with primary interest in business complemented by IT savvy.

So, a question - what do you do with your free time? - helps to clarify your "ideal environment", your natural working habitat.

Additional questions might be - what is your primary sources of information? what site do you open first thing in the morning? Is it Wall Street Journal or SlashDot?

19Oct/110

Metaphorical modeling

I am a big proponent of modeling - data modeling, business process modeling, system modeling… Reducing complex systems and behaviors to the most important attributes for a given context facilitates better understanding, and helps to architect better solutions. Metaphor follows the same pattern - while not a full blown model, it highlights but a few features, magnifying them, and stripping of unnecessary details; by providing analogies in a different context it helps to break patterns of conventional thinking - often resulting in an innovative solution.

It had occurred to me that IT/Business uneasy symbiosis could be represented as a two-sided mirror erected at the border between the respective domains - IT and Business. Each looks at the other side convinced that “this is how they look!”… but each sees only reflection of its own.

NB: This is a variation of a proverbial “hammer and nail” metaphor: IT is looking for IT solutions for business problems (shelfware?), while Business is busy inventing business solution for IT woes (outsourcing, anyone?)

The domain of an Enterprise Architect (not to be confused with Enterprise IT Architect) spans entire enterprise, including both IT and Business; to offer a solution, an EA must have dual citizenship in both worlds.