Culture – Netflix Style

Netflix is one of those companies that started up relatively recently and re-invented itself to survive.  It realized that DVDs were not going to be the dominant delivery mechanism for entertainment delivery and added streaming services to its lineup.

The rest, as they say, is history.

Continue reading “Culture – Netflix Style”

A Learning Culture

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash
Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Ray Dalio is kind of a legend in financial circles.  He started Bridgewater Associates, a hedge fund company, in 1975 in his apartment.  By 2012 it had become the largest hedge fund in the world with over $160 billion in assets under management. To do that you have to be good at what you do, but not just you.  A single person can’t do this by themselves, they need to have partners, associates, staff, that have the same sort of philosophy and ideology as the founder.  And guess what the founder thinks? Continue reading “A Learning Culture”

Confidence Come From Failures
rawpixel (Pixabay)

I was reading an article the other day that really resonated with me.  “Where Confidence Comes From” talks about how the author became confident in rock climbing through the repetition … of failing.  He became confident in his abilities by following this pattern:

  1. Climb one rung.
  2. Fall.
  3. Get back up.
  4. Repeat, adding a rung, until I reached the top.

He fell, deliberately, to get used to the sensations of falling and to experience what it felt like to fall. Continue reading “Confidence Come From Failures”

How Far Will You Go?
Gellinger (

If I were a psychology student I would have heard of the Milgram Experiment.  Now that I have, I’m disappointed in humanity and scared of what it might reveal about myself.  Essentially the experiment was set out to prove whether or not “free will” exists when someone in authority tells you to do something.  In the case of the experiment, the “teacher” gave higher and higher electric shocks to the “learner” if they got a question wrong.  Unbeknownst to them the “learner” was an actor and there were no electric shocks.

Unbeknownst to psychologists at the time, people defied expectations. Continue reading “How Far Will You Go?”


The Japanese instituted something called a pod hotel or a capsule hotel.  As Wikipedia states:

A capsule hotel (??????? kapuseru hoteru), also known as a pod hotel, is a type of hotel developed in Japan that features a large number of extremely small “rooms” (capsules) intended to provide cheap, basic overnight accommodation for guests who do not require or who cannot afford the services offered by more conventional hotels.

One of the key things to keep in mind is the idea that this is intended to be for “basis overnight accommodation“, not a long term stay.  In the business world there is a similar concept called “hoteling“, but some companies completely screw it up. Continue reading “Hoteling”

People Don’t Understand DevOps

What is DevOps?  What is it that is so difficult for people to grasp?

First of all, I think we all need to understand that DevOps isn’t a single thing.  It is a variety of things, that when run in concert, create the DevOps experience.  If you miss out on one of those you will probably still call yourself DevOps but you’re not quite fully realized.  If you are missing out on more than one?  Then you are farther away then you think. Continue reading “People Don’t Understand DevOps”

Cultural Debt

Chris Potter

I thought I had an epiphany the other day. I was thinking about Technical Debt, how an application can build up Technical Debt through doing things quickly or with less attention to detail, instead of doing things correctly. Taking shortcuts to the answer instead of doing it the proper way. And then I thought “what if an organization does the same thing”? I went on to call it “Cultural Debt”. I was thrilled that I had just discovered a new sociological concept.

Until I looked it up on the Internet and found out that someone had discovered it before me. 🙁 Continue reading “Cultural Debt”

Canadian Culture Is Not Dying

I hate people.

Maybe that’s a bit too strong.  I hate crowds of people.  No, even that’s not quite true.  I hate mobs.  Yeah, that sounds better.

I think this all started in October of 1994.  October 4th, to be precise, at Commonwealth Stadium.  It was a chilly night and the Rolling Stones were in town.  The crowd was massive with somewhere around 60,000 people trying to get in.  Colin James was the opening act and we got there in plenty of time to get in.  Heck we got there almost an hour early but security was tight.  Really tight.  We may have gotten there an hour early but we were still outside the stadium when Colin James took the stage.  It was almost a strip search by the time we got to the front and every bottle or container that could contain any liquid had been confiscated and was littering the ground behind security. Continue reading “Canadian Culture Is Not Dying”

APIs May Require A Cultural Change
Flying Cloud (

When you call a service you invoke an API (Application Programming Interface).  The idea of an API is old but has survived the introduction of thousands of computer languages and processes because it is a necessary piece of application development.  The advent of cloud computing has raised the status of APIs to a new level.  There are APIs to access services from numerous cloud providers.  These APIs allow you to do almost anything you can imagine from creating virtual machines (Powershell on Azure), exploring the latest news feeds from a company (RSS) to seeing what your favourite celebrity is posting (Twitter, Tumbler, Instagram, etc.)
Continue reading “APIs May Require A Cultural Change”

Two Approaches To Security

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There are two radically different approaches to something like security:  assume that you can prevent something from happening or assume that the worst is going to happen, how are you going to recover.

The first approach (“prevention”) is a wonderful thing.  You spend thousands or millions of dollars in preventative measures: Continue reading “Two Approaches To Security”