Book Review: The Right Way to Select Technology


The book, "The Right Way to Select Technology"This review is a long time in coming. I finished this book a while back but every time I would sit down to write the review a new crisis would emerge. I feel bad because Tony Byrne and Jarrod Gingras are two industry friends that I’ve known since my earliest days of writing the Word of Pie.

The Right Way To Select Technology describes a comprehensive approach to choosing technology products. It is in-depth and will do one of several things for you:

  • Make you realize how little you know about selecting technology
  • Convince you that you probably should hire help in running the selection process
  • Show you how you can make wiser technology decisions

I fell into the final group. I’ve been doing this for years across a range of products and additional skill development is always welcome. While no process will give you a 100% success rate, the components described by Tony and Jarrod will get you a lot closer to that magic number.

Before I go into detail, here’s the nitty-gritty takeaway: If you advise clients on technology selections, read this book. If you are running a technology selection for your company, get this book. If it is your first selection process, read it, hire help, and make sure the people you hire have read the book.

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Book Review: Women In Tech


This is the book you need to buyIt’s been a while since I wrote a book review, mostly because I’ve been reading fiction and history, neither of which really fit this blog. However I just finished a book that definitely deserves a review, Women In Tech.

First, the TLDR: Read the book!

Women in Tech was written by Tarah Wheeler Van Vlack in conjunction with women drawn from across the tech world. It is a blend of a career guidebook and inspirational stories written by women from different backgrounds. Each woman has made their unique mark in the industry.

Before I get much further with this review, it must be noted that as a man, I am not the primary target for this book. That is not to say I didn’t gain value from reading it. Far from it.

I learned a lot and enjoyed reading the book. Women in Tech is well written, humorous at times, and I highly recommend it for anyone in the tech industry. One last note, as women were the primary audience, my perspective on the book should be considered in that light.

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Review: Every Leadership Book


Over my life, I’ve been through a lot of training outside the traditional classroom. Starting in Scouting and then transitioning into my professional life, I’ve been exposed to a lot of different Leadership principles. When mixed in with my professional experience, I think I have a firm understanding of what it takes to be a Leader.

I have read a few books on Leadership in my day. I’ve been impressed with none of them. When I saw this Dilbert strip, it all made sense to me.

Dilbert explains all leadership books to his pointy-haired boxx

No system works for every organization. No system works for a single organization all of the time. The Leadership style that creates a startup may not work when that startup is a market leader. The Leadership style for a software product company may not work well for an Association.

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Review: The Introvert’s Guide to Success


The Introvert's Guide to Success in Business and Leadership

Years ago, I started following Lisa Petrilli on Twitter as I had found some of her blog posts interesting. She had written several blog posts on how Introverts can leverage their skills to be valuable leaders.

I loved the posts because I am an Introvert. If you don’t believe me, then you’ve never seen me hibernate after a large conference or noticed how I am always easier to find in the first few days of a conference than the end of the event. Being moderately “successful”, the posts usually helped to explain why what I was doing was the right thing or gave me tips on how I could do something better. When The Introvert’s Guide to Success came out, I quickly bought it. Then like many work-related books that I buy, it took me a while to read.

Glad I did.

Serial Readings

As I read the book, I was reminded of many Science Fiction classics. Not in tone or topic, but in style. Many early works were actually a compilation of a series of short stories published in one of the magazines of the day. As such, every few “episodes”, a basic tenet of the imagined universe was restated. This makes a lot of sense in a series that is read over a year or more, but not as much sense in a novel.

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Review: The New Kingmakers


newkingmakers

I will admit that I have been following what Stephen O’Grady and James Governor have been doing over at Redmonk for quite some time. They were doing for developers what I wish people had been doing when I was a developer. When Stephen published his book, I promptly went out and got it…and then had to wait to find time to read it.

I am so glad that I did. It took a little more time to get around to writing this review, but it is important to write because The New Kingmakers is full of truth. What Stephen has written about is the critical start of the trend we are seeing all over the world of technology.

Before I go into that, let me talk about the book.

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Book Review: The Myths of Innovation


berkun-myths-210x315Back in August, I had the privilege of hearing Scott Berkun speak. If you don’t know who he is, you should. He regularly shares nuggets of wisdom that reveal a man that not only seeks to learn from research and experience, but can also merge the two into solid advice.

When I saw him speak at the DC User Experience Professionals Association meeting, he was talking about his book Mindfire. He was giving out free copies to those that participated in the presentation/discussion. When I “earned” my book, I traded for The Myths of Innovation. An earlier book of his, it is one that gets to the root of why I listen to Scott Berkun.

Enough prelude, let’s talk about the book.

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Review: The Innovator’s Dilemma


image The Innovator’s Dilemma

Clayton M. Christensen

Before I went to EMC World and marveled at how the management was missing the boat on the cloud and was diving wholesale into Case Management, I was told that I had to read this book.  After EMC World, I broke down, purchased it, and then fought to find time for it.  The book is over a decade old, so what was the rush? Let me tell you, I am glad I found the time.

I was told before I read the book that it was going to make me a little sad and despair for the future of Documentum.  It did in a way, but it also helped explain everything that was happening.  It actually increased my opinion of some people at EMC.  I am going to talk about the specifics to EMC, and other legacy Content Management vendors, in a subsequent post.  For now, let’s dive into the book itself.

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