Learn or Die

by Dmitry Kirsanov 1. August 2011 06:28

Sometimes I re-read my old Twitter posts, in which I just memorize some ideas that comes to my mind, in order to write follow-ups here.

Today it is about my First Postulate, which states that once you've stopped learning new stuff - you're dead. So, what do I mean by that and why I am so sure about it?

And I am not speaking about IT training here. It's about everything in life. Don't ever stop asking about everything and anything new around you, even if it's not interesting. You may be not watching TV, but you should know that there are LCD, Plasma and LED TVs, that there are receivers for 3D movies etc. There shall be no area in which you are complete zero. Learn about modern styles of music even if you don't understand them. Use one hour per week for reading and try some authors or genres you wouldn't do otherwise. This way, you will help your brain to last longer. To survive. Or even bring yourself to a new level of quality. I mean - the quality of life, as all knowledge has this as a primary target - to improve the quality of life for those, who share the knowledge.

I will expand this topic later when will speak about creativity and innovations later on.

Total Recall

by Dmitry Kirsanov 30. July 2011 03:38

Once upon a time, I made a web project together with a project manager wannabe, and for various reasons it failed. After having a disagreement with my ex-partner, we decided to leave the project to him, as I would even pay to see how he would handle that project alone. He didn't, but this story is not about that.

He was not a developer, and still he is not, but he wanted to edit the project according to his beliefs, so he hired a small company to continue development. The project was ambitious n-tier application using all technologies I knew at the moment. And that was 2007. A small company didn't have ASP.NET developer, so they hired one, without telling service buyer that he doesn't have a clue how to do what he is asked to.

During the first months beautiful front end was changed and moved to DotNetNuke. I didn't look into the internals of business logic part, as my ex-business partner didn't fulfill his duty to pay for my share in the company, but I believe changes were merely cosmetic and not the good ones.

Anyway, the story is not about that as well. It was just a preamble.

During 2008 I started to teach people software development and systems administration at New Horizons training center in Riga. I loved that job and enjoyed it better than anything before it. I was the one who established IT training in Riga and quickly enough we defeated the monopolist player in the market, "Baltic Computer Academy" (which is not an academy at all, that's just the name). We even dared to move into their office when they were not able to pay for it anymore.

A part of the job was to discuss training program with the future student, so I, as a trainer, would be able to deliver the most relevant training. And one day I met a guy from the mentioned small company, the one who had no clue about ASP.NET software development.

Now imagine the situation, when you were not even paid for the project that you considered a project of a lifetime (that was naivity, but honest nevertheless) and now you meet someone who could complete that project for your dishonest ex partner. That was fine for me, but then he mentioned that project and said that he was the one who architected the whole thing and created it as it stays now and he just needs to learn some advanced bits of ASP.NET in order to complete it.

Well, at that moment I understood for sure that the project is dead, buried and won't be resurrected ever, no matter what. Because you can get knowledge if you don't have it. You can get experience in process. But if you are spoiled with wrong attitude, which is part of you - don't waste your time.

I haven't seen that guy anymore, as the price for training was too high and his little company didn't want to invest into training. Who knows how it would be if they would.



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