While a lover of technology in general, I am not particularly fond of the rapid rate of change. As soon as I get a new
I still hold out hope that during some unimaginable disaster, I alone will have the one combination of elderWare that will save mankind, not unlike the invisible bacteria that saved Earth in "War of the Worlds."
Innovation. I just love the new and novel, which might mean my current role of Enterprise Architect is somewhat of an apparent contradiction. After all, doesn't my job make me the Sargent of Arms for corporate standards? Don’t I speak Innovatum-non-grata from the Holy Book of Principles and Practices. Am I not responsible to ensure we always reuse the infrastructure, compenentry, and assets into which we have poured untold dollars, time, and careers? Do I not put the No in Innovation?
The truth be told, I happen to believe that standards and innovation go hand an hand. Standards, operating practices, Business Accelerators, and common reusable assets foster, rather than inhibit, innovation.
Consider northern Nigeria in the late 1990's. The lack of suitable refrigeration literally killed people and destroyed opportunities for social and economic progress. Mohammed Bah Abba, a business man and college lecturer used a combination of two clay pots, one inside the other, separated by wet river sand to create a cooler. As moisture in the gap evaporates from the outer pot towards the dry desert air, the temperature in the inner pot decreases.
His solution, while highly innovative, used the resources that were readily available.
Standards, assets, and practices can be thought of as structures that facilitate the expression of creativity. Think of your favorite song or musical genre. Take a moment and ponder your music library, your iPod, or your albums. Even though music is bound by a finite number of notes, chords, keys, and of course the notion of rhythm, it is still considered a boundless avenue for creativity.
Standards are not an obstacle to innovation; standards, structure, shared assets - these are the facilitators of innovation!