TITLE: Good Ideas Aren't Always Enough AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: June 01, 2012 4:39 PM DESC: ----- BODY:
Ward Cunningham
In his recent Dr. Dobb's interview, Ward Cunningham talked about the wiki community's efforts to create a universal mark-up language. Despite the many advantages of a common language, the idea never took hold. Ward's post-mortem:
So the only thing I can conclude is that as nice as having a universal or portable mark-up would be, it's not nice enough to cause people to give up what they're working on when they work on their wiki.
This is an important lesson to learn, whatever your discipline or your community. It's especially important if you hope to be an agent of change. Good ideas aren't always enough to induce change, even in a community of people working together in an explicit effort to create better ideas. There needs to be enough energy to overcome the natural inertia associated with any set of practices. Ward's next sentence embodies even more wisdom:
I accept that as the state of nature and don't worry about it too much anymore.
Denial locks you up. Either you continue in vain to push the rejected idea, or you waste precious time and energy lamenting the perceived injustice of the failure. Acceptance frees you to move on to your project in peace. -----