July 26, 2007

Digital Business Strategy Lives!

Filed under: Blog Housekeeping — Bob Gifford @ 9:44 am

I have been struggling to find the right configuration of blogs, blog content, and audience. I started this blog to combine personal non-work blogging with the work-related blogging I had been doing at Digital Business Strategy. However, I’ve decided that isn’t going to work. Here’s the full text of my post over at Digital Business Strategy explaining my new approach/rationale:

I’m Not Dead Yet!

I’m rethinking my decision to retire this blog. My personal blog, Ergo Dubito, has provided me an outlet to write about personal, non-work-related stuff, and that’s great. Except lots of people out there in the IT blogosphere don’t really care what I think about the latest Harry Potter book. Come to think of it, most of my friends outside of work don’t really care if there’s a Linux civil war in the making. So, while a single blog allows me to write about my entire life, as the fully integrated life-work balanced person that I am, it’s not so reader-friendly.

So I am going to resurrect this blog for work, and maintain Ergo Dubito for things outside of work. Two blogs, two marginally overlapping audiences, one author. I’ve ported my IT-related posts over here, and will remove them from Ergo Dubito.

One change though — the url for this blog has been digitalbusinessstrategy.com, which is not only long, but also has three ‘s’es in a row. I’ve always had a secondary url, dbstrat.com, redirecting to digitalbusinessstrategy.com. I’m going to switch them, so dbstrat.com is now the primary url, inspite of the fact that it sounds like database strategy instead digital business strategy. It’s shorter. Previous links will still work, but dbstrat.com will be the default.

June 16, 2007

Welcome to the New Digs

Filed under: Blog Housekeeping,Philosophy — Bob Gifford @ 2:36 pm

After blogging at Digital Business Strategy for awhile, I’ve decided to start up this, a more personal, blog. So the first question, of course, was picking a name.

The best blog names are clever without being pretentious. I couldn’t come up with anything clever, so I went for pretentious instead.

Latin is always good for pretentiousness, although not as good as Greek. Sanskrit is beyond pretentious, but a lot harder to come by. I settled for Latin.

Rene Descartes famously said “Dubito ergo cogito; cogito ergo sum”, meaning “I doubt therefore I think; I think therefore I am.” And I guess that’s fine as far as it goes, but it has always seemed a bit backwards to me. For me, the thinking comes first, and if I think long enough, doubt inevitably follows. By this I don’t mean an existential doubt like Descartes, or self-doubt or insecurity, but an appreciation of the ambiguity inherent in the world. If we are honest, we must admit that all of our opinions and conclusions in life must be provisional, awaiting another bit of data, experience or enlightenment to turn them upside down.

One reaction to this doubt is a kind of jaundiced cynicism, a belief that since nothing is certain, any sincerely held belief is merely naive. Well, I have many sincerely held religious and political beliefs, and I don’t intend to abandon any of them to cynicism.

Another reaction to doubt is to attempt to eliminate it. Since “cogito ergo dubito”, the elimination of doubt requires a refusal to think, or at least to think too hard about our cherished beliefs. But this kind of certainty is an illusion, and eventually the dikes will break and the water of doubt will come crashing in.

Instead, I embrace doubt and ambiguity, I surrender to it. Not that I won’t argue for my viewpoints as though they are irrefutable and certain, but it’s a good thing for the name of the blog to remind both blogger and reader that the opinions expressed here should be greeted with, first, critical thought, and second, doubt.

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