Ranchers and Farmers…living together!

Nice post here by Hass Chapman on hunter-gatherers, play & software development.   I can definitely relate to the way of working outlined.  While we were hunter-gatherers, we did take to agriculture eventually. 

That move is not natural for me, though.  I’m more of a rancher than a farmer.   The challenge for me, therefore, is how to accommodate other styles of work. 

To highlight potential role mismatches, I fall back on models like the “finders, grinders, minders” consulting model David Maister popularized.   Consulting comes to mind because I’ve often heard customers say: “I’d like the folks who built it to be the ones who support it.”  That sounds plausible in theory, but that usually involves taking a “grinder” and making him/her a “minder”.  Which rarely works unless that person is explicitly looking to change his/her lifestyle.

PM Quote of the Day — Augustus Caesar

You cheer my heart, who build as if Rome would be eternal.

Who knew that Augustus was such a fan of quality workmanship?  It is a testament to how well (and how much) Rome’s builders built that we can see so much of the old Augustus’s Eternal City today.  Even hundreds of years of stone poaching, neglect, and the passage of time never completely obscured the glory that was Rome.

This saying reminds me that I should take seriously everything I build… even this simple blog post.  Augustus’s praise is a useful corrective to the idea that what we’re doing today is ephemeral, fleeting, and unimportant.   He isn’t advocating gold-plating (post here). 

From what we know of his views on adornment, haste, and waste,  Augustus valued people, places, and things that were reliable and built to last.  Considering that the empire he left lasted for almost 500 years in the West (and almost 1500 in the East), he knew a bit about permanance. 

Or what passes for permanance in this world.

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