Isaac's Blog

Platform Sunset

…part of the power of the social media business model is that it introduces a type of attention collectivism, where I’ll promise to pretend to care what you have to say (by clicking “like” or leaving a quick comment), if you do the same for me. This is incredibly seductive, though ultimately hollow.
Cal Newport

This is harrowingly pertinent now that I've shared my very first blog post on LinkedIn. It's hard to tell how well the post is received on my actual site, but I'm glued to the 👍 Like count on LinkedIn. 😩

I've been thinking on how we rationalise different kinds of development tasks that engineering teams get up to.

For example, critical bugs absolutely need to be fixed now. Product features and improvements satisfy our customers who pay the bills that keep the lights on. We’ve even made strides in substantial classes of Tech Debt in terms of an on-going operational “tax” of sorts.


Paying attention to everyone else’s self-interest is in fact a precondition for one’s own ultimate well-being.


There is something about the seductions of power that makes one lose sight of ethics and other people’s interests.

So much more to unpack here, but at very least, one should be able to appreciate the unceasing tension between the experience of wielding power and being an effective leader.

How uncanny. I'm glad I'm not alone in this journey of ramping up in writing.

I watched Sustainable: A Documentary last night. The concept of “industrialised agriculture” was brought to light.

It made me wonder this morning if some segment of the software industry has begun to travel down a similar path of “industrialised software development”.


Excerpts from Chapter 15 of “The Political Brain” by Drew Westen.

The great nineteenth-century French sociologist Émile Durkheim proposed a distinction that has proven central to virtually every anthropological account of culture since, between the profane and the sacred.


Organizations as we know them today are simply the expression of our current worldview, our current stage of development.

Conflict and contention are natural in complex organisations, and they must be dealt with openly.

Honest political behaviour is a natural and healthy part of dealing with conflict and contention.

The problem lies with dishonest political behaviour.

Supporting facts are overemphasised, opposing facts are suppressed. Gets in the way of rigorous decision making.

Deteriorates honesty and trust within the organisation.

Managerial procedural strategic decisions have no clear cut answer. More about getting people to agree

Technical decisions are about people working to arrive at a superior solution.

What feeds resistance in others, and how do you turn a resistant person around?

What practices do you use to surface and manage misalignment on your team?

Reflections from reading The Garden and the Stream.

The Garden

The Garden is the web as topology. The web as space. It’s the integrative web, the iterative web, the web as an arrangement and rearrangement of things to one another.

Every walk through the garden creates new paths, new meanings, and when we add things to the garden we add them in a way that allows many future, unpredicted relationships