Words That Do Not Mean Anything

Sometimes It Helps To Look At Ourselves

Over the last ten years or so, aside from the millions of acronyms that have been created, misused, and abused, there is this growing trend in using words that are what I call open ended – left to the receiver to decide the importance or lack there of.  In fact these are now over-used and should be stamped out from and eviscerated from technical jargon and meetings.  Here is a short list i would love the dear readers to send me some more:


in·ter·est·ing  (en-ter-es-sting)

def: adj: arousing curiosity or interest; holding or catching the attention.

A word that “sounds” intelligent.  Is it?  I contend people say it because they do not have any idea of what really to say or they are too scared to say what they are really thinking. Nowadays in this world of the information age, people get paid to think.  They get paid for what they know which turns into what they do.  Yet sitting there and saying “Interesting” doesn’t do me a damn thing other than waste mine and other people’s time.  If you are going to say something – say it.  Otherwise be quiet.  Sorry your not holding my attention. Interesting isn’t it


scen-ar-i-o [si-nair-ee-oh, -nahr-]

–noun, plural -nar·i·os.


1. an outline of the plot of a dramatic work, giving particularsas to the scenes, characters, situations, etc.
2. the outline or the manuscript of a motion picture or television program, giving the action in the order in which it takes place, the description of scenes and characters, etc.
3. an imagined or projected sequence of events, esp. any of several detailed plans or possibilities: One scenario calls for doubling profits by increasing our advertising, the other by reducing costs.

I LOVE this term.  Note item #3 IMAGINED… well boy howdy there have been some imagined events.  Strategic Scenarios sure do not materialize in money near term do they?.  They are however extremely important for planning.  That said SCENARIO is a term that is being used to mean “Well Really I want to sound like I know what I am doing but I don’t have a clue – really nor do I have any real ideas.”


syn·er·gy  (snr-j)

n. pl. syn·er·gies


1. The interaction of two or more agents or forces so that their combined effect is greater than the sum of their individual effects.
2. Cooperative interaction among groups, especially among the acquired subsidiaries or merged parts of a corporation, that creates an enhanced combined effect.

Cooperation boys and girls!  “Oh I see it as a Synergism between the two departments.” Decoded:  I am going to take all of your projects and plans away.


“I see your investment synergistic to our needs.” Decoded: Please give us the money even it if means a low valuation with a 51% ownership!


clar·i·ty  (klr-t)



1. Clearness of appearance: the clarity of the mountain air.
2. Clearness of thought or style; lucidity: writes with clarity and perception.

How many times have you heard this? “I just want to be CLEAR.”  People also use the word transparent.  This is like a human resource catch all term that basically means I have no idea why i said what i said and put the company at risk.  In other uses in means I am trying to explain something that I do not understand.


win-win (wnwn)



Of or being a situation in which the outcome benefits each of two often opposing groups: a win-win proposition for the buyer and the seller.

I mean really?  Cmon’.  There will always be a winner and a loser.  Sorry you dont get a trophy, the contract or the bonus or venture capital money.  See my blog on Social Darwinism and Software Development.

Woo Hoo!

Woo hoo is a common expression of joy, especially as arising from success or good fortune.

Instead of saying Hell Yea that was incredible people say it as a half assed attempt at enthusiasm in the workplace.  They also use it at the end of a ski run in a very tight oppressed manner when they really want to yell.


blog (a blend of the term web log) is a type of website or part of a website

Never have liked that word.  Sounds like your vomiting.  Then again most people just whine and say nothing of importance.  Blogging about Blogging Blogs.

So here we go: I want to create an Scenario that is Interesting with Synergy that is Clear and creates a Win Win for everyone they can Blog about.  Woo Hoo!

Until Then,

Go Big Or Go Home.

A D A P T I B I L I T Y !

Well low and below I was having some tea this morning and going through my thousands of RSS feeds and one of the survival method blogs wrote about the following subject matter:

Why Do People Fail To Adapt?

1. Not seeing what is happening. Sometimes folks just aren’t informed on what is going on. Hard to make logical conclusions and adapt to them if you don’t have the information.

2. Refusal to accept the new reality. Folks will just stick their heads in the sand and hope the problem goes away. Often this happens with a family who can’t afford to maintain their current lifestyle. They will try to borrow and juggle bills and try to hold onto the greased string as long as they possibly can. Like tearing off a band aid going slower makes it worse. Better to have a couple really rough months than a couple pretty rough years.  Also there are those starving farmers in Africa. Ya know the ones you always see on the aids commercials? The ones who keep planting pathetic little gardens on their 1/2 of an acre farm in the Sudan where 9/10 years there is a drought that kills all the crops.

3. They limit their options. They refuse to try the kind of food that is available and starve instead. They refuse to move to find work. They hope old jobs will come back instead of focusing on retraining and finding new employment.

4. They give up – Adapting, at least in the context we are talking about, is usually unpleasant. Like any other human situation, there is a huge psychological factor. When something bad happens, I am not saying you shouldn’t be sad. Eat a carton of ice cream, or drink a half bottle of booze or whatever it is you do. Go to sleep, wake up and get the heck on with your life. It will eventually get better.

Wow.  Say it aint so?!   Lets do an item-by-item analysis here.

Item #1 Not Seeing what is happening.

Being aware and not being stupid.  Ok this is almost a circular argument as solipsism is seeping in here.  Really?  Please make logical and rational decisions. Pretty obvious and appears to be a given if your building software.  In many cases not being informed is another way of saying you do not have the background to process the information.

Item #2 Refusal to accept the new reality.

This is a big one.  In many cases people cannot cope with vast changes in technology or any type of culture.  I mentioned homeostasis in my last blog.  Resistant to change.    It is a conundrum of sorts.  They want better yet they do not want to deal with a new reality or they have the inability to understand a new reality.  This is occurring in the world of database technology.  (thought I would throw in some software terms to make it tech based).  It is hard when someone busts your whole reality of what you thought was possible.  We no longer need huge co-locations to run companies.  EC2 changed what is possible.  People are still fighting it.  Machines that learn?  OMG they will take jobs away!  It reminds me of the 1950s robot scare (not that I was around then I just read about it…)

Item #3 They Limit their options

Doesn’t this appear counterintuitive when you take it out of the context of life and death or not creating competitive software?  Options! Choices! Menus! Features!  Heck Sonic Burger makes a killing on menu features and options.  So does Microsoft Office – something like 1739 features?

Item #4 They give up adapting.

If you just quit, you get what you deserve. This doesn’t mean keep doing the same thing over and over and over and over and expecting a different result – that is crazy.  If you just quit and literally give up you deserve what you get.  Go Home.  Walk on home boy.

There is also a flip side to adaptation and that is knowing when to hold the line and not change to the latest bright shiny object or algorithm.  This is also adaptation albeit using experience.  Being Patient is an adaptive.  Mr Alligatorinae pictured above is a great animal at being patient.  Be Patient – Adapt – Emerge.

Until Then

Go Big Or Go Home.

Original site can be accessed here:


Social Darwinism and Software Development


I was having a discussion the other day with a couple of very smart humans.  The discussion trended towards the aspect of performance which naturally led me to start joking about  meetings called “Nurturing Others In The Work Environment” and “I’m Ok – Your OK”.  A very bright software engineer,  on my current team, commented the software speaks for itself, which got me around to the current installment.  The software does speak for itself.  In fact, elite software truly speaks for itself.  Further software development is the ultimate survival of the fittest from an evolutionary standpoint.  For those not familiar with this subject matter I cannot at this juncture give you cliff notes.  Thus we are not nurturing others in the blogosphere.   Mr Spencer who was a pretty smart feller was attributed to coining the phrase “Survival Of The Fittest”.   Stanford is kind enough to give you a great rundown of the subject matter here.  Concerning the taboo terminology of Social Darwinism, we can locate the Wikipedia definition as thus.  Richard Hofstadter devoted an entire chapter of Social Darwinism in American Thought (1955) to Spencer, arguing that Spencer’s unfortunate vogue in late nineteenth-century America inspired Andrew Carnegie and William Graham Sumner’s visions of unbridled and unrepentant capitalism. For Hofstadter, Spencer was an “ultra-conservative” for whom the poor were so much unfit detritus. If you have not read Hofstadter’s book, you should. Once again it is outside the scope of this blog to review but it is one of the few tomes on the “taboo” subject of Social Darwinism.  Also if you have a Facebook account there is a Social Darwinism fan page.

It is my belief that the world of Spencer and Hofstadster via the foundation of Darwin, can be seen in the world of software development.  If you have ever worked on software that touched multiple millions of deployments to billions of feeds you know the importance of quality.  You also know the importance of performance and accuracy.  There is no arguing what happens when someone “breaks the build”.  It is NOT OK – YOU ARE NOT OK.  In fact you are probably going to get your ass called at 2:30 AM after you pulled a 3 day straight coding sprint to get up and fix it or else.  Does this sound like nurturing others in the work environment?  Hell No!  You are costing people money!.   It is a binary process.  Its either on or its off and it better be ON!  All systems go.  I am not saying that we should seek complete perfection, elegance and bug free coding that is impossible if your going to make bank through software creation.  He who ships first will win – if the quality is there.  Yet if your grinding and someone is lagging they are left severely behind the pack and if you watch the discovery channel you know what happens when there are laggers in nature.  It is not pretty.

This is a view from the inside.  From the outside most only see the frisbees and imported beer and sitting there with Pantera playing on the headphones whilst sitting in front of a computing device.  Easy huh?  Think again.  Real coders, data scientist, architects <<insert title de jour here>>  literally have ice running in their veins when it comes to creating software  – usually for money.  As I wrote in other installments, I discussed extreme capitalism and mercenaries.  Good, Better, Best.  It is especially exacerbated when the best of the best make it look easy.  The same for sports.  Kelly Slater, Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan these people make it look so easy.  Aplomb comes to mind.  I am fond of saying, ” To do a dangerous thing with style is the mark of a professional”.

Historically the software industry was a juxtaposition of the peace love and happiness stuff which is in direct conflict with what actually occurs within the world of software. Another interesting aspect to the software world that one must always be A D A P T I N G.  Homeostasis is a death knell to software company.   Microsoft missed the internet but sat down and decided to give away Internet Explorer.  Apple was tanking and created colorful computers.  Companies that continually evolve and change adapt to technology trends and market pressures – win.  Antiquated static slow moving companies are akin to the diseased of a pack and will be taken down.

Dont let you or your company be the one that is taken down.  Evolve. Change. Grow.  Seek Power through great software.  Innovation and Great Code speak volumes.  Amplify those qualities.

Until Then,

Go Big Or Go Home!