Inertia can ambush change

Over the last few years, I came to properly understand this warning from John Kotter about business change: Never underestimate the magnitude of the forces that reinforce complacency and that help maintain the status quo. That's from his book Leading Change, which my friend and colleague Wayne recommended to me when our change project was about to be funded. He

Gartner's view on database landscape (MQ)

Courtesy of NuoDB I was drawn to read Gartner’s updated magic quadrant report. It’s sidenote includes an observation I have to agree with: Through 2018, a wave of consolidation will affect the operational DBMS market’s smaller vendors, through mergers, acquisitions and business failures. NuoDB, who I mentioned in my previous post, did well as a visionary, whilst

The NewSQL alternatives

At Rackspace I have a number of business customers who are committed to a Microsoft architectural stack. Some of these are older businesses, not startups born with cloud tech choices nor with access to cloud-era talent. Their stacks include SQL Server exclusively, and it has been part of their world forever. Recently as I’ve been talking with their IT

Seeing the world clearly

One of my core principles is to continuously increase the clarity with which I see the world. This is a top-level principle, and so I have a bunch of values and behaviours which flow from that. I have seen this value misused. A bitter person misused it to excuse counter-productive behaviour, and an idealist misappropriated it to disguise their unwillingness

Driven to achieve

I’m a fan of the Strengths model. On both of the times I have done the self-assessment, two of my top five strengths are: Achiever Focus This is very true of me. The ‘so what’ of the combination might not be immediately obvious unless you have those same two compulsions, or have a significant other with them, and have

Seeking root cause

Systems thinking I don’t know whether I became a systems thinker because I read about it in the Fifth Discpline fifteen years ago, or whether I was already a systems thinker but didn’t know the label. Either way, I remember how it gave me a visual method to expose a system, and the diagnostic power of its archetypes.

How cloud-oriented is the app?

RightScale lets you easily deploy an application to a cloud provider like AWS or Rackspace. We do this by abstracting your server infrastructure design to a layer above that cloud provider. Consequently, I often have conversations about whether an existing application is a suitable candidate for the cloud. The less common question, but of great significance, is whether an application