The Leader’s Data Manifesto & Data Centric Thinking

Your organization’s best opportunities for organic growth lie in data. But most organizations are far from being data driven. We find no examples of fundamental company-wide change, without committed leadership and the involvement of everyone at all levels of the organization. The Leaders Data Manifesto While researching for the M816 Data Management course I came across … Continue reading The Leader’s Data Manifesto & Data Centric Thinking


M816 Data Management

I have been studying "M816 Data Management" for the last few weeks for the next module on my MSc degree. It is completely different to the previous modules in that there is a lot more stuff to 'know', rather than 'do'. I was concerned that the content would be dated but that fear was unfounded … Continue reading M816 Data Management

Tesler’s Law of Conservation of Complexity:

I loved this article and it inspired me to write something about IT systems integration.

Harish's Notebook - My notes... Quality, Data Science, Strategy & Lean.


In today’s post, I am looking at Tesler’s Law of Conservation of Complexity. Larry Tesler, who came up with the law, worked at Xerox PARC, Apple, Amazon, and Yahoo in different capacities. He was one of the brains behind “cut/copy and paste” functionality in word processors. The basic premise of the law is as follows:

“Every application has an inherent amount of irreducible complexity. The only question is: Who will have to deal with it—the user, the application developer, or the platform developer?”

This is an important idea in the user interaction with a software application. One of the best examples to explain this further comes from Dan Saffer’s excellent book, “Designing for Interaction.” Think of the email application. It needs a “From address” and a “To address”. Without either of these two items, the email cannot be sent. All, if not most, email applications will automatically populate…

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Constructivism, Cultural-historical activity theory (CHAT) and Expansive Learning

To remain employable, we need to keep learning, but need to be effective, efficient and efficacious in the way in which we go about it. (Assuming that you need to simultaneously hold down a job, learn and enjoy life.) The U810 CPD in Practice course should help achieve that and I recently read a a … Continue reading Constructivism, Cultural-historical activity theory (CHAT) and Expansive Learning

Engestrom – Expansive learning at Work: toward an activity theoretical reconceptualization

Disruptive Technology Enhanced Learning

Engestrom’s opening position is not controversial: who are the learners, why do they learn, what do they learn, and how do they learn? However, as he moves into analysis his position becomes more complex, and broadly Marxist.

Engestrom sees contradictions as a potential source of learning. Furthermore, he describes contradictions as ‘historically accumulating structural tensions’. This carries echoes of Marx’s idea of dialectical tension. Moreover, Engestrom seems keen to locate his analysis in economic and political contexts: ‘the primary contradiction of activities in capitalism is that between the use value and the exchange value of commodities’ (p. 137).

Engestrom directs his analysis to the impact of technology: ‘When an activity system adopts a new element from the outside (for example, a new technology or a new object), it often leads to an aggravated secondary contradiction where some old element (for example, the rules or the division of labor) collides with…

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