Monday, October 28, 2013

Subtle not Random

If you've been in one of my classes you've probably heard me say, "It's subtle, not random".

I get a lot of very frustrated users telling me how their computer or software does this crazy thing and they can't figure it out.  Many times I know exactly what is causing it.

It could be where your mouse is located when you pick or that you hit escape in the middle of a command or maybe you are in the wrong "silo". Once you understand what is causing this crazy behavior you can control it, predict it, and even use it to your advantage.

One of the reasons I love training is to see the ah-ha moment. That moment when I explain "when you do this, that happens" and the student's eyes light up as they "get it".

The trouble with subtle things is figuring it out. That's my job. Discovering what is happening and sharing with you. I hate things that are random in the software. I test, test, test, read the manual, test some more, and sometimes call the developer to find out what the heck is going on. Then I share it with you.

A few months ago I was explaining to my son why the cat's were meowing for treats at 9 PM instead of 10 PM and I said, "It's subtle, not random.  Cat's don't know about time change."  That's when I realized it's not just software.  There are so many things in life that seem random. Then I dig in and find out what subtle thing is causing that seeming crazy behavior.

Here is another one for you.  Have you ever really looked at the FedEd logo?

Do you see the arrow?  They did that on purpose. 
Subtle nor Random.

Today, I don't have a software tip, I have a life tip.  If something seems random, look for the subtle action causing it. You might be able to use that info to your advantage, if nothing else it won't be a mystery any more.

Thanks for reading.  Take care.