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Wednesday
Sep212016

engineers and buzzards

It's a bit silly to try and divide the world into two kinds of people- but here goes.

Everyone has a bit of the engineer in them and a bit of the buzzard. Sometimes you get pure buzzard and pure engineer, but most people are a mix. The engineer part achieves a flow state (a psychological state where some kind of challenge is fully matched by ones skills to meet it, leaving one entranced and fully 'in the moment') by finding a problem, a real problem with a physical dimension, a demonstrable and obvious problem- and using all his skills- solving it. Solving the problem may require some, even a great deal of, imagination but imgaination is a tool, a means, not an end.

A buzzard achieves a flow state by getting a buzz from ideas and imagination. 'What if?' the buzzard thinks and he's away. Buzzards can leap over buildings and any obstacles. Buzzards can defy time and aging, they can imagine living for a 1000 years and being known by every person on the planet. Sometimes a crazy idea by a buzzard actually solves a problem that an engineer has framed. The buzzard gets sudden fame.

When an engineer gets a bit of buzzard in him he tries to solve every single thing that is framed as a 'problem' in the world using only the tools he knows. He comes a cropper.

When a buzzard gets a bit of engineer in them they let their minds soar and imagine problems and solutions that do not and could never exist.

Both buzzards and engineers suffer a common delusion- they believe all problems can be solved.

The secret is- don't let them mix. Use the buzzard to escape the earthbound trap and see things differently. Use the engineer to solve real and demonstrable problems. Asking whether something is really a problem, whether it makes sense to frame it thus as a problem, whether the real problem might lie elsewhere, whether, having framed the problem, it might be insoluble all these are things that you need to think about before you let the buzzard or the engineer loose.

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