Never Dull in the ZT Bus Series – The Matrix

Matt “Never” Dull has been a technology consultant for over 15 years and is only famous for a few of things. The earliest was a 12’ x 6’ acrylic on canvas painting “Four Bluish Ballerinas” in 1993, if anyone locates it, please put the starting bid at $10. With a brain that can “never” say no to solving the strangest of business requirements, he has successfully delivered some of the most interesting and seemingly impossible integrations involving content management, search, social, portals, security and mobile solutions to a client list a mile long. In November of 2015, he bought a bus. This bus will eventually become a home, a mobile house where technology wheels will continue to turn and sweat from his pores. So the adventure begins. His two kids and dog put up with him and will join him on cross country bus trips when they can.

“People say I’m crazy. I got diamonds on the soles of my shoes.” ~ Paul Simon

Turn back the time to Thanksgiving 2014. It was a decision weekend. After an almost year-long adventure as Captain of my mobile development firm, it was time to return home. I joined Zilker that following Monday. This move had me thinking about the definition of home. Home was working with people that I knew and trusted and over the years, together, as a team have brought many successful solutions to market for B2B and B2C companies. Home was solving mission critical problems with technology solutions. Home was, well, virtual, just a name put on an experience, an adventure, a way of life. There was nothing physical about home. So let’s disrupt the “house” landscape as well because when they say “a house is your home” and the home part is virtual, well, you get the idea.

The first step, assess what you have and what you need. On second thought, no, don’t bother with what you have; skip right into what you need. We are in the redefining our home/house/infrastructure/application mode here. Let’s not focus on what is mainstream and become game changers. Let’s be industry leaders and think outside the proverbial box (while not being run over by the proverbial bus. Pun? eh? get it?) and make a customer experience. Let’s KISS!

  1. Home: The owner must be able to open a door to get inside
    Portal: The end user must be able to log into the application
  2. Home: The home must be able to keep intruders out
    Portal: The system must prevent unauthorized access
  3. Home: The home must allow the owner to store only what is needed
    Portal: The system must allow a user to add relevant notes to transactions
  4. The list goes on…

Got it? OK. Seams way too simple, right? That is the point. Your portal has been humming along for 15 years, just like my house. Is it still doing what your customers need? Do you know what your customers need? Short answer, probably not. Now is the time to redefine and start over, not to keep patching and hacking to make it feel like home. My job is to move into a bus and determine what I really need in a home/house. I want fast (fast is relative, I’m not driving my bus down the highway at 100 MPH), small and minimal. Everything “deployed” in the bus should have at least a dual purpose. Efficiency is important! Don’t you think?

As you start to think about redefining your landscape, think about dual purpose, think about reusable assets, core functions that serve as gateways to micro services. Think about everything!

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