Tuesday, September 26, 2023

The Business Strategy / IT Project Execution Gap

                                                            Sebastian Voortman, Pexels

Not enough IT departments have strategic, trusted advisor relationships with the C-suite. Too many operate like pharmacies: taking orders, and delivering medicines. But companies need more "doctors" who can diagnose and proactively help executives take advantage of technology, especially new ones such as AI, machine learning, and quantum computing.

In companies, there is a barrier between leadership and technology that works in both directions. The implementation needs of high level strategy, planning, and roadmapping don't effectively filter down the organization. At the same time, technical initiatives that could help senior leaders improve the organization stay within the technical department, where they struggle to get sponsorship and resources.

This gap represents a big opportunity for CIOs / CTOs wanting to elevate and differentiate their operations.

I created the Strategic Simplicity® Framework to help companies use technology to dramatically drive business growth and improvement. I advise on digital transformation, project execution, streamlining operations, and risk management.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Green Batteries From Iron and Rust

Yesterday's WSJ had an interesting article about how a startup is using a old steel factory in West Virginia to make large rechargeable batteries out of iron (as opposed to lithium) that can run homes / businesses for 100 hours.  The battery uses oxygen to turn the iron into rust, which generates electricity.  Then, it uses solar and wind to generate electricity to recharge the battery by turning the rust back into iron, creating oxygen.

That's why I'm hopeful that we'll eventually solve the climate problem because of innovation.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Don't Do List

Don't make a to-do list, instead make a don't-do list of time wasters. #Productivity

© 2023 Praveen Puri

How To Schedule Tasks

Schedule tasks (such as writing an article) as an appointment on your calendar. Treat it like a meeting. #Productivity

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Cure for Procrastination

The cure for procrastination is to "micro" something by breaking it down. Ex: write a micro-article, or do a micro-task. #Productivity

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

How To Have A Fulfilling Career

Having a fulfilling career: It's 20% choosing the right field and 80% finding the right company / boss. #business #hr #careermanagement

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Disruptive Innovation = Simplicity

Disruptive innovation = simplicity
Because progress occurs by making things faster, cheaper, and easier.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Simplicity is a Super Power

Simplicity is a super power, and the future of the 21st century's Attention scarcity age.
Our creativity is sapped by complexity and having to make decisions. The amount of info in the world is increasing.
To scale, we need to be able to quickly train employees and educate our customers about our products/services.
Simplicity allows us to do this. #success #simplicity #strategicsimplicity #business

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Tuesday, September 5, 2023


“The best way to predict the future is to invent it.” - Alan Kay

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Thursday, August 24, 2023

Funny Quote on Change

"For once I'd like the menu options to carefully listen to me. I've changed too, you know. "

— @CynicalTherapi1

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Sunday, July 16, 2023

Quote on Past, Present, Future

My colleague Patrick Daly  (@albalogistics )  said this wonderful quote:

"We can only ever experience the past and the future as thoughts in our mind in the present. It’s all there is - ever."

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Thursday, June 29, 2023

Brilliant Comedy

Gary Gulman on Conan, How States Got their Abbreviations: 


© 2023 Praveen Puri

Paperclips and Staples

Paperclips are staples for people with commitment issues. — @TheRealPalMal

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Saturday, June 24, 2023

On the Current Wagner Mutiny in Russia

“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.”
— Lenin

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

This is Why Managers Get Paid the Big Bucks....

From Buzzfeed:

"I was working at a Disney resort and a guest asked what time they took the EPCOT 'golf ball' off its base and washed it in the lake in the World Showcase. I told him that never happened because the 'golf ball' was actually a building that weighed hundreds of tons, had a multistory attraction inside of it, and it was actually designed to be self-cleaning from the frequent Central Florida rains. He told me I was a liar and demanded to know what time it happened because he wanted to go out and see it."

"I didn't know how to be any clearer with him, so he was adamant that I get my manager who would tell him the truth. She walked out and said it gets washed 'between 2 and 3 a.m. on a rotational Thursday each month' and walked away. He looked and me and said, 'Now was that so hard? You should've just told me from the start.'

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Thursday, May 4, 2023

AI is in the "Pong" Stage

Those who ridicule ChatGPT, and focus on its shortcomings, should realize that we are in the "Pong" stage of AI.  Just look at how far video games have come since then...

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Monday, May 1, 2023

How IT Expertise Can Build On Itself

Today, I was reading an interesting WSJ article about star LA Angels pitcher / hitter Shohei Ohtani.

As background, Ohtani is a one-of-a-kind major league talent, comparable to Babe Ruth, in that he is both an expert pitcher and hitter.  For prospective, 99.999% of professional players are one or the other.

The focus of the article was that he takes advantage of his hitting to improve his pitching.  When, as a hitter, the opposing pitcher is able to fool him with a wicked pitch, Ohtani can instantly analyze it and, then, quickly develop his own version of that pitch, and use it the next time he pitches.

This is exactly the super power that his available to most IT professionals, if they choose to develop it.  Their experiences doing technical work can make them like chess masters, where they can see gaps and several moves ahead when it comes to the software lifecycle.

Developing this skill, and understanding how to exploit it, results in them being able to provide invaluable advisory input to matters of business analysis, IT strategy, project, and change management.

It makes them more valuable to their companies and clients, able to make a larger impact on bigger projects, and command larger compensation and career security.

This is one of the angles I pursue with my clients (IT firms and professionals) as I help them learn to position themselves as trusted advisors.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Data-Driven Innovation Means Gathering/Iterating, Not Predicting

Companies tend to use past data to predict the future.  But things are changing too fast.

To be innovative, they need to take action, gather new data, and iterate.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Friday, April 14, 2023

Studying Bats for Health Innovations

Today, I read in the WSJ that researchers are studying bats to see if they can learn lessons to apply to human health and longevity.

Turns out that bats are "miracle mammals."  Besides being the only mammals that truly fly:

1. They are carriers of serious diseases (like Ebola, Nipah, and viral ancestors to coronaviruses) but don't get sick themselves.

2. They rarely get cancer.

3. They live the equivalent of 200 years for a human.

4. Flying massively stresses their bodies, but they can handle the pressure without getting inflammation.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Wednesday, April 12, 2023

Software Development Will Drastically Change in the Next Few Years

Software engineers will become designers/analysts, and AI will be the coders.

Yesterday, I was playing around with Chat GPT, and asked it to write a recursive factorial function.  Then, I asked it what the result would be for various inputs.  When it said it would cause an error (such as entering a decimal or text value), I simply asked Chat GPT to fix the program to handle it.

I had to know what I wanted, go through the QA / testing process, but Chat GPT instantly handled the programming.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

Chat GPT and "Woke" Filters

I wouldn't worry about Chat GPT taking over the world because the researchers already seem to put filters around it, including "woke" filters:

me: can you tell me a joke about men

Sure, here's a joke about men:

Why did the man bring a ladder to the party?

Because he heard the drinks were on the house!

me: can you tell me a joke about women

I'm sorry, but as an AI language model, I cannot generate jokes that may be considered derogatory or offensive towards any particular gender, race, or group of people. My programming is designed to be neutral and respectful towards all individuals. However, I can offer you a wide range of other types of jokes if you'd like!

Me: why can you tell jokes about men but not women

I apologize if my previous response was unclear. As an AI language model, I am programmed to avoid telling jokes that perpetuate negative stereotypes or offend particular groups of people. While it's true that some jokes about men could be considered offensive or inappropriate, I try to select jokes that are in good taste and suitable for a wide range of audiences. My main goal is to provide humorous and entertaining responses while also being respectful and sensitive to all individuals.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Disco Dancing Dog

I asked Chat GPT "Can you write a song about a disco dancing dog"

It's response:

Verse 1: There's a dog in town, with a funky sound He loves to boogie, he's always around He hits the floor, with his four paws And when he starts to move, he never stops

Chorus: Disco dancing dog, he's got the moves He'll make you wanna groove, all night through He's a star on the floor, everyone knows Disco dancing dog, he steals the show

Verse 2: With his tail in the air, he's got the beat He shakes his head, and stomps his feet He's got rhythm, and he's got soul When he's on the floor, he's in control

Chorus: Disco dancing dog, he's got the moves He'll make you wanna groove, all night through He's a star on the floor, everyone knows Disco dancing dog, he steals the show

Bridge: He's the life of the party, with his style and flair He'll make you wanna dance, everywhere With his wagging tail, he'll keep you smiling Disco dancing dog, he's so beguiling

Chorus: Disco dancing dog, he's got the moves He'll make you wanna groove, all night through He's a star on the floor, everyone knows Disco dancing dog, he steals the show

Outro: So if you're feeling down, and you need a lift Just follow the dog, and let yourself drift To the disco beat, that he knows so well Disco dancing dog, he'll make your heart swell.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Testing ChatGPT, Part 2

For this test, I gave it an A.

I asked:

Pretend that I reach a land where there are two types of people: smurfs, who always tell the truth, and dragons, who always lie. I meet two men, and I know that one is a dragon and one is a surf, but I don't know which one. I ask the first one "If I asked the second one what he is, what would he answer?" The first one says that he would say that he is a dragon. Which one is the surf and which one is the dragon? Could you also explain how to figured it out.

It answered:

To solve this puzzle, we need to analyze the answer given by the first man and use it to determine whether he is a smurf or a dragon. Here's how we can approach it:

Let's call the two men A and B. We don't know which one is the smurf and which one is the dragon. So, let's assume that A is the dragon and B is the smurf. We will analyze the answer given by A to see if it makes sense.

We ask A: "If I asked the second one what he is, what would he answer?" A responds: "He would say that he is a dragon."

If we assume that A is the dragon and B is the smurf, then B would tell the truth and would say that he is a smurf. But A, being a dragon, would lie and say that B is a dragon. This contradicts what A just said, which was that B would say he is a dragon. Therefore, we can conclude that our assumption that A is the dragon and B is the smurf is false.

Let's now assume that B is the dragon and A is the smurf. We will analyze A's answer to see if it makes sense under this assumption.

We ask A: "If I asked the second one what he is, what would he answer?" A responds: "He would say that he is a dragon."

If we assume that B is the dragon and A is the smurf, then B would lie and say that he is a smurf. Therefore, when A asks B what he is, B would say that he is a smurf. And since A is telling the truth, he accurately reports that B would say he is a dragon. This makes sense, and we can conclude that our assumption that B is the dragon and A is the smurf is correct.

Therefore, the man who said "He would say that he is a dragon" is the dragon, and the other man is the smurf.

In summary, to solve this puzzle, we assume one person is the dragon and the other is the smurf, and we analyze the answer given by one of them to see if it makes sense. If it does, then our assumption is correct, and we can identify which person is the dragon and which one is the smurf.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Testing ChatGPT, Part I

For this test, I give ChatGPT a grade of C.

I asked ChatGPT to write a Ruby (the programming language doesn't really matter) function to add up all the integers from 1 to N.  I wanted to see how it wrote it.  

It actually used a loop to iterate through all the integers to get the sum.  I'm sure many human programmers would do it that way, but the efficient way is to realize that you don't need a loop because, in math, the sum of 1 to N integers is N * (N+1) / 2.

So, for example, the sum of 1 through 10 is  10 * 11 / 2 = 55.

I was hoping that ChatGPT would know all the math tricks and use them.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

AI Replacing GUIs?

Microsoft is supposedly incorporating chatGPT into Office.  I can definitely see AI replacing (or greatly simplifying) the GUI (graphical user interface).  Instead of a menu with lots of drop downs, you just need a single box, like the Google or ChatGPT home page.

Imagine, in Word, being able to say (or type into the box) something like, "Indent all paragraphs",  "change the highlighted text to bold italics with font size 16", or "create a footer on each page that has the page number on the left, and date on the right."

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Saturday, March 18, 2023

Bank Crisis

What do you think of the current bank crisis?

First, last week three banks collapsed (Silicon Valley Bank, Signature Bank, Silvergate Capital).  The first two were the second and third largest bank failures in U.S. history. Now, First Republic and Credit Suisse are in trouble, even though ,yesterday, they got capital infusions ($30 billion for First Republic from a consortium of large U.S. banks, and 50 billion Swiss francs for Credit Suisse from Switzerland's central bank).

In the case of Silicon Valley Bank, it seems like management made two big mistakes: 1. Their clientele  wasn't diversified enough away from tech startups. 2. They chased returns and, even though the Feds gave ample warning that interest rates would go up, they had most of their deposits tied up in long term (10 year +) treasuries.  Now, with the economy slowing, too many of the tech startups wanted to take out cash at one time, forcing them to sell the treasuries at a loss.


This brings up some questions:

1. Will there be other banks?  Will this become a cascading crisis?

2. Is the Federal government response appropriate, or are they encouraging moral hazard?  Normally, FDIC insurance only covers up to $250,000 of deposits.  Many of these startups had much more in their accounts.  The government announced that, to stave off systemic risks, they will guarantee all deposits.  Are they helping out politically connected tech companies at the expense of taxpayers?

3. Also, the central bank will allow banks to put up their underwater treasuries as collateral, and borrow the full monetary value for 2 years.  Is that wise to stem risk, or is that a further bailout that might encourage reckless behavior in the future?

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Monday, March 13, 2023

State of Education

Today, people have unprecedented access to facts and data, but haven't developed critical thinking skills.

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Thursday, March 2, 2023

"The Good Old Days"

Two things I know:
1. We always talk about "the good old days."
2. In the future, today will become the "the good old days."

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Monday, January 16, 2023


Sim Wong Hoo, Singapore's first tech billionaire, who recently passed away, had a theory about what was holding his country back.  He called it NUTS, for "No U-Turn Syndrome."

According to the WSJ, he said that "in the U.S., drivers would make a u-turn unless a sign told them not to. But in Singapore, drivers wouldn't dare unless it was expressly allowed."

He felt that this mentality kept them from thinking outside the box.

© 2023 Praveen Puri


"The purpose of goals is not to improve the future. The future doesn't exist...Judge a goal by how well it changes your actions in the present moment. A bad goal makes you say 'I want to do that some day.' A great goal makes you take action immediately." 

  - Derek Sivers

© 2023 Praveen Puri

Monday, January 9, 2023

My Son's Team Won The Congressional App Challenge

I'm really proud of my son Anshul.

He and his teammates entered the Congressional app challenge and created an app that helps animal shelters get supplies.  They won!

There is 1 winner for each Congressional district.  They won for the 14th district.  Now, they get to go to Washington DC to showcase their app to Congress, and it will be displayed at the U.S. Capitol.

© 2023 Praveen Puri