Critical Thinking

It’s interesting how different points of view can lead people to have different opinions given the same basic information.

I’ve been a long time fan of building desktop software for Windows and have resisted the move to the web based technologies that are strongly favoured by the enterprise. My argument has been to choose the right tool for the job. And my emphasis has always been inclined towards user experience.

When Windows Vista was released I jumped at the opportunity to learn the new Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) and was thrilled by it’s capabilities. I made sure I had a machine capable of running the 3D graphics.

Enterprises choose web based technologies because they don’t want to commit to expensive client hardware upgrades. Enterprises have chosen not to adopt Windows Vista because they don’t want to commit to expensive client hardware upgrades.

I’m conflicted. Do I pursue what interests me or do I pursue what’s commercially practical? What’s important is that I understand (and critically think about) the broader picture. Then I can choose a way forward.

2 responses to “Critical Thinking”

  1. Hello Mark,

    You are not the first Brownsword to ponder that question! From my perspective, the answer is, “it depends”.

    Are your software coding skills your primary source of income? If so, then you probably have to pursue what’s commercially practical. If not, then pursuing your interests might be OK.

    I’ve been working on producing information products for people with Internet-based businesses for a couple of years now (computer security and information assurance are my specialties), and it has taken some time to discover the right market and how to approach it. I think that I’m finally learning how to take what I love to do (computer security, writing, and helping people) and turn it into a business (but I’m still not ready to quit my job). Thankfully, I’m a position where I can keep my job while working on my business — the best of both worlds.

    Best wishes,
    Tom Brownsword, CISSP®

  2. Hi Tom,
    Great name! Thanks for the reply. Currently I’m pursuing the best of both worlds approach. Against most advice, I’ve always followed my own interests and have so far been able to merge that with my professional work! Specifically I’m interested in the Live Framework and it’s emphasis on desktop / mobile devices and hope that the knowledge I gain can either be brought into my day job or used for more ambitious purposes. I’m still a believer in WPF and am looking forward to Windows 7.

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