Perceptions on Destruction

So, my system blew up. Ok, not really, but what does that mean to you? It means a lot of different things to me. Here are a few things that have gone wrong with my computers recently:

  • A monitor refused to power on at start-up.
  • A patch came in that caused a test system to refuse to boot.
  • A Software license key got corrupt – you’ve seen this one last week.
  • An external battery melted into a puddle of smoking silicon, plastic, cadmium, and goo.
  • A laptop wouldn’t even power up, but I had complete backups.

There are more, but I think you get the point: I’ve had my share of interesting experiences. So which one caused me the most grief (and embarrassment)? Well, I have many monitors, so losing one is never an issue. External batteries are interesting devices, but it only cost me some time on the plane that I used for some much needed rest anyway. The software vendor with the license key issue responded quickly, so, while I lost six hours, it was overnight and I should have been sleeping. So what bothers me the most?

From a convenience standpoint, there’s no question that losing my laptop was the worst. It took me six weeks to get back to full speed. However, the laptop was at the end of its life. I had a backup and lost virtually nothing. However, I couldn’t buy a comparable laptop that had the version of the operating system and productivity software I wanted on it. So reconstructing my environment was painful. But they key part of it was that I didn’t slow down at all for my customers. Not a single document or presentation revision was lost nor any e-mails nor anything else of importance.

From an operational standpoint, my company took a hit because one of our servers refused to boot. We had to run without our core document repository for almost a day. There was no issue in the hardware though. The problem was that an operating system patch came down automatically, but the BIOS couldn’t handle it. The hardware vendor issued a BIOS patch after the operating system patch came down and the problem was resolved. So who’s to blame?

In a word: Me. It’s always my fault. Hey, when you run a company, it’s your fault. Take the blame and move on. I’ve since made sure to disabled automatic patch installation on all my servers, and they now go through quarantine prior to installation on business critical systems. The operating system vendor has to take some of this for not testing their patch adequately on very common BIOS releases where their operating system is installed as OEM software. And it’s also the hardware vendor’s fault for not issuing the warning to their customers in advance of the issue. I can’t believe that we were the first company to encounter the problem – although, as some of you readers already know, it’s happened before.

So what did I learn? There was egg on my face, of course. My staff was pretty upset that the server was down, even if only for a short period. My customers didn’t notice, because it was an internal server, fortunately. But, mostly, that it’s not the hardware. The physical machine had no problems, although there were lots of amber warning lights flashing at me. It’s not the individual software components, because they all worked to specification, according to the vendors anyways. It was the inter-relationship between changing software components. And you know what? That’s usually what burns you. A few years ago, I gave a keynote where I asked the audience to choose which represented the most likely risk to their organization from a set of disaster scenarios, from an asteroid, nuclear war, floods, mould, and a picture of my (then toddler) son at a keyboard. I have to give the group (one of the HP NonStop user groups) credit for getting the answer right – my son. Changing software represents something far different than a disaster scenario. It is a quantifiable, known, and expected risk. Each time you change your system, you are putting your company, your customers, and your stakeholders at risk, because something may break. On the other side of the coin, not changing your system also puts the same group at risk of no longer being competitive. So what do you do?

It’s simply not an option to stand still. Could we surf the web if we all were using bicycle-chain driven computers or upgraded looms? I don’t know about you, but I can’t blog on a loom. My cats can blog on a rug, but that’s a different story and very messy. So change is something we want and have to embrace. Dealing with the risk-reward of moving forward is pervasive in technology. We can’t ignore it, so we have to change and put in new releases. The questions are where to find a balance and how to do it safely.

Stay tuned for upcoming entries where I’ll talk about this balance. The next blog will go into a comparison of different levels of expectation of reliability.

Running with a Security Blanket

I remember, back when I was two, I had a little blue blanket. It had a blue shiny border and made me feel warm, comfortable, and secure. I cried when my mom washed it because somehow it was different when it came back. It smelled nice and clean, but it just wasn’t the same somehow. By now, you’re probably wondering why I’m bringing this up. So am I, actually, but I’ll get there.

This blog is coming at you directly from the HP NonStop Security SIG in Canada. A number of vendors showed up today to present their capabilities and perspectives. It was a pretty good event. Topics included: PCI Compliance, Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Compliance, Kerberos, single logon, various protocols, emulations, integration points, auditing and reporting. OK, so why am I rambling on about security on an Indestructible Computing blog?

Security is rarely considered in the Indestructible Computing domain. Yet security breaches definitely contribute to outages, particularly when the criminal is bent on malicious damage rather than data access. Fortunately, of all the breaches, this kind is not that common. A bigger concern these days for security is protecting data from prying eyes. But come to think of it, if you get audited and get shut down because you’re too vulnerable, that’s a pretty big problem for your customers.

But if you look at indestructibility, security and authentication can play in other ways that are not obvious, but annoyingly interrupting. Suppose a customer logs onto your banking application using their card number and password and then changes their password. If everything goes right, all the servers happily running in the data centre pick up the credential changes and are able to service the customer’s requests for balances, transfers, and other inquiries. But what if one system is down for maintenance – it happens? The password update isn’t picked up by that system immediately, but that should be OK. The user gets a note that some part of the system they don’t care about isn’t available, and they carry on happily. An hour later, the system and user come back in. The user now wants to use resources on the system that was down, but the batch job that updates passwords from the master password server hasn’t run yet. Now you have an unhappy user who has to call customer support. That costs you money for the support agent and credibility to the customer. So the important part of this equation is that password and credential management must have no latency. It may even be that the servers that process your credentials are right up there with the more critical parts of your service offering, because they are customer facing.

But that’s not all. Current audit requirements mean that so much logging is going on that companies need increasing amounts of disk every year. We’re even hearing that we’re going to have to eventually keep records of all traffic going through our routers. Who makes this stuff up, disk drive manufacturers? We’re projecting a need for terabytes of storage just for security and audit compliance. And, the rub is that if you run out of disk, your application cannot process transactions or even inquiries. You actually have to shut down until you can start logging again. Now that is not indestructible, is it?

Random rant: In an effort to keep things politically correct to reduce HR vulnerabilities and access to bad sites, some companies are putting in activity loggers as part of their security and audit infrastructures. These are going on your laptops and workstations! The concept is great for catching slackers and indiscriminate porn surfers. The problem is that some of these tools can also capture credit card information, passwords, and other identifying information. Who is securing the HR department? What if their tracking data is hacked?

Security is like a warm blanket. You can wrap your systems up in it and feel all nice and comfortable. But some hackers might want to take away your blanket or poke at you through it from places you can’t see. More importantly, you can’t hide from your customers under it. And unlike some superheros’ capes, blankets are not indestructible.

Sidebar – Software Licenses Impacting Indestructibility?

This is a special news flash blog entry from a real life, so do not interrupt your set. We’ll return to our regularly scheduled blog shortly.

My company has established some pretty good controls and redundancies for handling a variety of scenarios relating to software and hardware failure. For example, my book is backed up on a RAID drive on a server and has a redundant copy on my laptop in case the ceiling falls in on my server. The server is under a main support beam in the building and nowhere near a water supply, so it’s even somewhat protected from an earthquake. While flooding is a possibility, the rest of Toronto would be lost first, so I think it’s an acceptable risk. Anyway, to the point. Tonight, a Friday, all of a sudden after 14 months of working properly one of our primary third party software publishing products stopped working because it hit a “genuine version violation”. I’ll leave you to guess who made that product. Anyway, I can’t install the product on another machine because it already hit the violation and wouldn’t be able to be activated. I should mention that we have a very strong anti-piracy policy and I’ve got the original software media on my desk beside me. So now we’re down because we’re unable to use a key resource of our company. The response from the vendor is that the situation will be resolved within 1 business day, which puts it sometime at the end of Monday. The rating assigned by the vendor was “Minimum business impact”. Ha!

So how does this relate to indestructibility? Well, it shouldn’t, but it does. Because a key service is no longer available, our business is interrupted. It wasn’t because of a process issue or a procedure issue in our company. Nor was it a hardware or software failure. It was a flaw something the vendor of our document preparation software did or did not do properly, their assessment of the severity of the issue, and their responsive times – all of which are outside our control.

Vulnerabilities to your ability to deal with failures come from all over the place. Sometimes they’re in your control. Sometimes, like tonight, they’re not. And it’s extremely frustrating and in this case embarrassing. But mostly it’s because of the unplanned and unacceptable outage for an unreasonable amount of time.

More to come on perceptions soon. Come to think of it, this is a partly a perception issue, isn’t it? A difference in the perceived importance of a service from a client’s point of view compared with a vendor’s.

Welcome to the Indestructible Computing Blog

The Indestructible Computing Blog is my attempt at framing what Indestructible Computing is and is not, and establishing a solid dialog on the subject in the hopes of raising the expectations we have for our friend the computer. In our daily experience with computers, we see spam, viruses, slow web pages, crashes, spinning clocks, and other minor annoyances that really don’t help our perception of what computers can do. What we don’t see is the infrastructure that quietly runs in the background, making sure that our money is moving around correctly without prying eyes, running our power plants, giving us the security of knowing that we can pick up the phone and call 9-1-1, and letting us go to the grocery store and pay for food with confidence that the computers will be up, even if our credit is maxed-out. But why are the two types of experiences so different?

Much comes down to expectation. We expect our computers at home to misbehave, but we are intolerant of retailers who lose our online shopping carts after an hour of our latest buying spree. After all, the commodity computers we purchase at our large electronic stores are throw-away, right? But how are they different than the commodity computers our banks and phone companies use? They’re not, actually. Advances in the quality of hardware have benefited everyone alike. So why do we expect our computers at home to stop every so often and become enraged when our banks web sites are down for a few scheduled moments?

I remember one incident at a border crossing, where an immigration agent asked me what I did. My response was that I help companies design systems that will run for twenty to thirty years. She was incensed at the idea and told me that that was impossible. That was an epiphany for me. In a few words, almost two decades of frustration at trying to convey the concept of indestructibility was explained and left me feeling like a pile of broken glass. Perception of the unreliability of computers has become so ingrained in our culture that people simply don’t believe systems could be built to withstand disasters, yet only when the systems are visible. Infrastructure, however, isn’t perceived to be a “computer”, so it, whatever it is, supports our society and had better be always there.

Stay tuned for the next entry where I’ll explore this perception further.

The Definitive Exercise Program for the Consultant on the Run

One of the key values we treasure most is humour. This is a document we occasionally circulate internally to help our own line people keep their humour through the rigours of air travel.

The Definitive Exercise Program for the Consultant on the Run

This exercise program is designed to help build your mind and spirit through laughter. No one, to our knowledge, actually follows this program; particularly because it could get them thrown off the plane or out of the airport. Remember that it’s a piece of humour and nothing more. The Nexbridge management team hopes you enjoy this regiment and that you don’t suffer undo hard disk strain. Best wishes and good luck.

A balanced physical exercise program, for mind and body, is made up of five key areas:

  • Flexibility
  • Balance
  • Strength
  • Endurance
  • Dexterity


It’s always prudent to begin your exercise regiment with a good stretch to prevent injuries. Unfortunately, being a travelling consultant, you don’t have the time to do this first. The best stretching can be accomplished using a variety of props, such as passports, credit cards, or contact lenses.

  1. Get onto the plane.
  2. Walk carefully to your seat (see Balance).
  3. Lean way over to your seat, dropping your laptop bag and travel documents into your seat, which is, of course, a window seat. This can be enhanced by getting on last, and having to lean way over the two other people sitting between you and your seat.
  4. Remember that the laptop bag should be in the seat in front of yours.
  5. Still leaning over, slide the laptop bag under the seat.
  6. Drop your props in the aisle.
  7. Frantically search for your props between the legs of other passengers and hope that your hands (and contact lenses) don’t get squished.
  8. Remember that you should have put your props in your laptop bag.
  9. Take out the laptop bag, stretching way over the other passengers, apologizing profusely.
  10. Put the props into your bag.
  11. Return the laptop bag under the seat in front of yours.

This exercise can be enhanced by either accidentally sitting in the wrong row, getting on the wrong flight, or taking an airline with no preassigned seating.


Balance is key to your role as a consultant, so it’s good to start your trip with an easy balance exercise.

  1. Knowing full well that the airline will lose your luggage at the most inopportune time, make sure that you carry on your absolute upper limit of luggage. It helps to have as many pieces as possible.
  2. At check-in, hide the ten or fifteen pieces of accessories behind your back – you don’t want the agent glaring at you.
  3. Simply walking to your flight will be a good warm-up for what is to come.
  4. You’ll have to do that hiding act again, trying to get past the gate agent. This shouldn’t be too much of a problem, because consultants are usually good at hiding their real intentions anyway.
  5. Balancing your luggage carefully, walk down the aisle to your seat, adjusting yourself like a ballerina. You will need to do this because you obviously can’t walk in a straight line down the aisle with ten to fifteen pieces of accessories.

Not only is this exercise useful to you as a consultant. After a career of practice, you can use the skills developed here during your retirement. Of course, you won’t be able to carry the same weight, but being able to juggle all those presents for your grand-kids will sure make them happy.


Good health is enhanced by strength training. Being strong also helps you to put up with the abuse you have to take on a daily basis being in an unprotected, hostile, consultant-unfriendly environment. Fortunately, air travel gives you a really good chance to build your muscles.

  1. Choose a day when you know it will be turbulent. Bad weather is a good indication.
  2. If you can’t choose your travel day, bribe the pilot to rock the plane a lot.
  3. Instead of placing your laptop case under the seat in front of you, put it in the overhead bin. This probably should be done after you have completed the Flexibility exercise otherwise you might hurt your back.
  4. Sit quietly during taxi, takeoff, and climb.
  5. As soon as the fasten seat belt sign goes off, stand up, open the bin, jump way from all the other falling laptop cases, reach in all the way to the back for yours.
  6. Put the other passengers’ (who are obviously consultants too) laptop cases in the overhead compartment. Feel free to ignore non-consultant passengers.
  7. Remember your manners and offer to hand the other consultants their laptop cases only after you have put them in the overhead bin. They are likely to decline as they are probably exercising also.
  8. Sit down, open your laptop, and start typing.
  9. Two minutes later, when the fasten seat belt sign goes back on, quickly pack up your laptop into its case and return it to the overhead compartment.
  10. As soon as the fasten seat belt sign goes off again, repeat the process.

After much practice, you should be able to do this twenty or thirty times a flight, during thunderstorms.


As we all know, there is much we have to endure as consultants. This exercise helps us cope with stress and repeated futile activities.

  1. At the airport, deliberately go to the wrong terminal.
  2. Check in there, but leave at least one piece of I.D.
  3. Walk briskly to your gate, carrying your laptop bag.
  4. Remember, once you are at the gate, that you left your I.D. at check-in, in the wrong terminal.
  5. Walk briskly back to the check-in counter, forgetting your laptop bag.
  6. Remember, half way to the check-in, that you forgot your laptop bag.
  7. Run quickly back to the gate, hoping that no one stole your laptop.
  8. Pick up your laptop, then return, walking briskly, though relieved, back to check-in.
  9. Pick up your I.D. at check-in.
  10. Walk briskly back to your gate, knowing now that your are moments away from missing your flight.
  11. Remember, half way back to the gate, that you left your laptop bag at check-in.
  12. Speed walk, being late, back to check-in. Don’t worry about your laptop bag, because the attendant will be watching it.
  13. Pick up your laptop bag, check that you have your I.D. and run back to your gate.

If you have extra time, just for kicks, you can repeat this process by lose your credit cards while having a drink at the bar before your flight.


While dexterity is often ignored during an exercise regiment, developing your dexterity skills will improve your ability to perform tasks such as writing on whiteboards without getting your clothes dirty. This exercise can be combined with strength training (see above).

  1. In coach, with the seat belt on, pull the laptop case out from the seat in front of you.
  2. Open the tray, without dumping the laptop contents into the seat next to you.
  3. Place it on the tray.
  4. Open the lid.
  5. Turn your laptop on.
  6. Turn your laptop off.
  7. Close the lid.
  8. Repack the laptop case without dumping the contents.
  9. Close the tray.
  10. Put the laptop case back under the seat in front of you.
  11. Repeat 5 times.

I hope that this guide will help you become better, stronger, and more effective when you show up at your client. As an afterthought, you should probably look for airline lounges with showers so that you don’t arrive at your client smelling too badly of sweat. A change of clothes is also essential if you try to perform these exercises during the food service portion of a flight. Mustard and ketchup have a nasty habit of messing up a good workout.

Good luck.

The Ten F’s

The purpose of the architectural design process is to balance many diverse, and often conflicting, objectives. It is an ongoing creative process providing the means to deliver a vision. We have used this assessment technique successfully at many of are clients to come up with a quantification of the relative merits of different architectural constructs. This section introduces each of the F’s of architecture.


The key objective of architecture is planning for the future. Whether you are going for an open-ended system or a fixed-life product, knowing the character of the possible futures, and planning for the diverse scenarios is crucial to an effective architecture.


As with a the look of a building or web site, the architecture balances form and function to arrive at an aesthetically pleasing, realizable, and understandable form that meets the client’s objectives.


The needs of the client define the function of a system or complex. Whether you’re looking at systems analysis or needs analysis, function categories what a client can quantify in terms of needs or requirements.


To give something form, a framework is needed to build it. You may be talking about sound engineering principles to build a skyscraper, using generally accepted methodologies, or using structures like client/server. The framework also includes how the system will be built, managed, operated, and paid for.


The technological basis for the framework is the foundation. Without sound foundations, even the prettiest architectures have fallen into the sand.


In order to realize the architectural vision, the materials must be available and techniques must be viable.


When we talk about features in architecture, we involve the highest level capabilities of what’s being built. Is this an on-line system with book of record processing, a pipeline control system with measuring and monitoring devices, or an office building with movable internal walls.


Understanding how a building will evolve over time helps shape the overall architecture. Is your goal to produce a cube o’ granite or a line of automobiles. Balancing cost of initial development and production with cost of ongoing expansion is part of the architect’s job. As long-term expansion increases in importance, the requirement for flexibility increases.


As repeated stress is applied to a system, will it gradually fall apart? Like riding a bicycle on a street full of potholes, which components will survive and which will fail? How will the system be maintained and how costly will be the repairs.


Finally, the architecture must take into account catastrophes. What happens when the design reaches its breaking point. Does it fail in a massive disaster of epic proportions or gradually fade into obscurity.

The Six “C”s

The team dynamics model used in facilitation assumes that a team is already set up and functioning. Most often, teams will exhibit confrontational or coexistence attributes. The innate desire of the facilitator is to move team members into a co-ownership environment. This usually takes time and much work. All was not without hope before facilitation was introduced, however. Good meeting chairs were generally able to move meeting participants into cooperative postures with relative ease. Collaboration was typically the unmet desire. This section introduces each of the C’s.


The worst form of team behaviour, coercion involves the convincing of participants to take action using active or passive threats. Pointing out that executing a task in a specific way is going to reflect in a performance review is a very common coercion tactic.


In virtually all environments there is confrontation. It becomes unmanageable when the conflict seems to be the sole outcome of the team interactions. Confrontation, in some organization can be useful in energizing people to actively participate. However, like wine, too much can be very detrimental.


Once a team moves out of a purely confrontational posture, admission of others’ value starts the team down the path of coexistence. Coexistence means that the team members get along with each other, and respect each others values and opinions. Teams in this mode can get stuck into a non-productive posture by viewing themselves as purely a social club.


Co-operative teams are ones where members are actually working with each other in a supportive capacity. This must be built on a sound foundation of coexistence otherwise the co-operation will be transient. People know whom to turn to for advice. Tasks are typically assigned to and performed by distinct team members.


Collaborative behaviour begins when team members work actively with each other to solve or perform their tasks. There is a key recognition at this point that skills to perform a given task may require more than one person.


Teams take on co-ownership characteristics when members realize that all tasks belong to the team and that their individual roles are in support of the team. Team members actively take on responsibility and accountability for not only their tasks, but for the team itself.

The Six “R”s

he relationships dynamics model used by Nexbridge assumes that relationships are already set up and functioning. Relationships, in our models are typically between producers (developers) and consumers (users). Most often, teams will, in general, exhibit reluctance attributes. Our goal is to improve the relationship to and maintain it in a responsiveness state rather than letting it sink down to revolt. Time is usually not on the side of either the producer or consumer. As time goes by, inaction or inappropriate action causes the relationship to decay. This section introduces each of the R’s.


OPositive0.jpg (19359 bytes) Responsive behavior is characterized by being able to meet or have met real needs, and to communicate or understand needs in a timely fashion.


OPositive1.jpg (19359 bytes) Hesitation or reluctance sets in when users are rebuffed or are told that changes cannot be made because the specifications have been locked down. Developers also become reluctant to have an open dialog with users for fear of new issues being raised.


OPositive2.jpg (19359 bytes) With repeated rebuff, and repeated issues coming up, both developers and users will inevitably develop resentment. Signs of this are users saying, “IT just isn’t listening to us” and developers saying “Those users cannot make up their minds.”


OPositive3.jpg (19359 bytes) Both users and developers become resistant to change after many change failures. Without adequate preparation, including training, even the best of systems will be met with resistance for fear that the mistakes of the past will be made again. Developers become resistant to making changes because of continual rewrites from wildly divergent specifications.


OPositive4.jpg (19359 bytes) Rigidity sets in, as an extension to resistance, when users simply refuse to take new systems. Developers start using phrases like “The specification is frozen. We’re not accepting any new changes.” Another form of this comes across as apathy. Users will say “Yeah, whatever” when new systems are planned for deployment.


OPositive5.jpg (19359 bytes) At the end of the road is revolt. At this point, users will go to outside or different sources for their products. They will change vendors, throw out products, including hardware. It is very easy to get to this point, very quickly, if the relationship decay is unchecked.

The Result?

OPositive.jpg (19359 bytes) When projects fail, developers and users are mired in blood. Users are the ones who often end up offline. The next time an attempt is made to deliver anything, the expectation is that blood will be spilled.

Environment Configuration Management (ECM)

This post provides information about Environment Configuration Management and how Nexbridge fits into it.

The Nexbridge core team members have been involved with the technology and business practices supporting Environment Configuration Management for almost two decades. The lessons we have learned through building and deploying business and technical solutions for companies needing to improve their time-to-market, including error rate reduction and support efficiency, have led us to unique wisdom in this area.

From this page, you can get to some of the resources available to support your ECM process development. We have included this information for you to examine. Our hope is that you will avail yourselves of our expertise in this area. Please contact us for more information.

What Is ECM?

Environment Configuration Management is the discipline of managing how software and hardware are configured and operated through the use of parameters, physical and logical structure, and connections. It also deals with managing how the operation of software is controlled through changes to its configuration parameters. Ranging from the very simple, command line parameters, to the extremely complex, Windows registries, ECM covers many technical areas. ECM is also the area where hardware and software meet in a product. Parameter at this meeting can include entities such as disk partition sizes, screen colors, driver versions.

ECM has traditionally dealt with only the hardware and has been in the responsibility area of System Operations. As the line between hardware and software has blurred, and software has had to detect and operate in diverse conditions and platforms, the management of environment configuration parameters has become critical to effective solution deployment. Today, ECM is integral to product and solution deployment, SCM, problem determination and correction, and root cause analysis.

put success reference here

Phrases “Officially” Banned from Nexbridge Documents

While we’re not entirely serious about having banned the words and phrases in
this humour piece, sometimes, words become tiresome, or silly, or just downright
annoying. Just remember, this is a joke. Except for paradigm. And dialoguing.
Oh, and World-Class. And…

Phrases “Officially” Banned from Nexbridge Documents

Banned Phrase Real Meaning Ban Reason
Actionable From legal lexicon referring to a situation that may result in legal
When you show up at a project status meeting and the organizer says,
“Please refer to the actionable items list”, and you don’t think “As
opposed to the non-actionable items list?” you’re in Heck.
Bridging Providing a previously unavailable means of interacting between two
groups or places.
Everyone these days is involved in bridging something; particularly
bridging the gap between the clients’ Accounts Payable department and
your Accounts Receivable department.
Even we’re guilty of using this
one. That’s how pervasive its use is.
Core Competencies What we’re supposed to be good at because that’s our business. What we think we’re supposed to be good at so that we can be perceived
as being justified in employing the noble hatchet-person to remove
everyone who actually produces stuff instead of increases stock activity.
Dialoguing This isn’t a word. Dialog is a noun. It means conversation; discussion. We need to dialog about going forward harnessing our impactful core
Do you see anything wrong with this?
E-anything Stick an e in front of anything an it means a computer is
eJust eOverused. eVery eOverused.
Follow-on Uh. Something that follows something? Another overused phrase. It’s not funny. It’s just tired. Let’s find a
new one. Like aft-action.
Going Forward From this point on. When you’re talking about doing anything, isn’t this redundant? Can you
see this in a meeting, “Going backward, we would have sold more,
but we didn’t. So there. Wait. Then. Oh forget it.”
Harness Use. Leash. Bridle. See Leverage.
I-anything Stick an i in front of anything an it means information is
iJust iOverused. iVery iOverused.
Impactful This is an invented term derived from heavy impact. After 160 million years, the dinosaurs’ management team probably
invented this term. They were promptly hit with an extremely impactful
comet. Remember that, the next time you think of using this term.
Leverage To apply a small force over a large distance to move a
disproportionately heavy object.
As in “We seek to leverage our technology into new synergistic
. We’re sure this is meant to allow you to position
yourself to be impactful.
Momentum Or inertia. Somehow, we can’t see a CEO using the phrase visioning
We must leverage our knowledge resources to achieve synergistic
Paradigm A way of thinking. A unique conceptual framework. This term was the first added to this list. We’re not even allowed to
discuss it for fear of shareholder and employee retribution.
Quality It’s supposed to be an adjective! On its own, it has no real meaning in common parlance. As in “Our
quality makes us last”. It’s worse when used as “Quality Management”.
Rightsizing A new word taken to mean “We have too many people like you with
bad hair. You’re fired.”
We think the definition stands on its own.
Synergy Independent developments leading to a  common objective with
permitting increased momentum. No really. We’re serious.
With a word like this, you expected a definition that did not use
banned words?
Utilize Use. Just use “Use”. Utilize an actionable stratagem; leveraging known variables;
Need we say more?
Visioning The real word is envisioning even though this word is in some
dictionaries now. So is dialoguing. Heaven help us.
The act of creating a vision. The act of doing other things we can’t
mention here.  As in “We are entering the visioning phase of
our corporate mission realization.”
World-class Please forward a definition. Our best take is that it refers to New
York, London, Tokyo, and those class cities.
We’re going to utilize synergy to become a world-class company.
Could you just die?
X-anything-without-the-E There’s no meaning here. People just like making big X’s in front
of their products.
We just don’t like it. After spending all those years evaluating
X-products, you’d be tired too.

We are also close to adding anything with an “i” in front of it.

Please leave a comment to nominate another phrase.

Bringing DevOps to Legacy Platforms