Carlos Leyva

Silicon Stories

Table of Conents



Chapter 1: Dirty Little Secret

The Early Years

Big Oil Company

Developers as Second Class Citizens

The Emperors Are Naked

Systems Thinking and Multi-Dimensional Constructs

Big Oil Is Cool

The Rexx Underground

Geek Heaven Turns Into Purgatory

The One-Eyed Man Is King

Information Sickness

Hitting the Street

Prophet of Doom?

Mercenary Musings

The Lawyer’s Desktop

Failure and Wisdom

Lessons Learned

More Lessons Learned

The Future Happens Sooner Than You Think

Still More Lessons Learned

Big Natural Gas Company

The Young Turks

Not Ready For Prime Time Player

The Wild West

A Slow Descent to Hell

Tulip Mania


A Freudian Perspective

The Usual Suspects

Inmates Running the Asylum


Middleware Madness

The Emperors are Still Naked

Chapter 2: Competitive Advantage

Two Tears In A Bucket

A Moral Dilemma

Data Warehousing and Big Unix Iron

Fear and Greed

Michael (Porter) Is Still ’Da Man

The Usual Suspects Revisited

Simply Profound

The Second Law of Thermodynamics

Chaos and Recurring Patterns

Decisions in Progress

Interesting Asides

Human Dialog as A Cost Factor

Commercial Software vs. In House Development

Microsoft Goes To War

Understanding Complexity

The “X” Diagram

Workflows and E-Business

Tear Down the Wall

The Next Big Thing?

Chapter 3: Process Patterns

Work in Progress

Patterns = Good & Bad Behaviors

A Set of Heuristics

Call to Arms Pattern

Supporting Cast Pattern

Producer Pattern

Director Pattern

Bad Actor Pattern

Key Abstractions Pattern

Breaking Ground Pattern

Collaborator Pattern

Organizing Principle Pattern

Planning the Plan Pattern

Wandering Around the Desert Pattern

Super Star Pattern

Blame Game Pattern


Chapter 4: Movie Making & Software Development

The Players

The Process

The Story

The Studio

The New Model

Chapter 5: The Missing Factory

The Road Less Traveled Starts Here

Why a Factory?

Assembly Line Tools and Processes

A Slight Detour

Getting Back on Track

Source Code Management (SCM)

Incident Management

Backup and Recovery

Tools of the Trade


The Shipping Department


Parting Thoughts

Chapter 6: Architecture

Software Architecture

So What?

Shack, House or Skyscraper?

Commercial Plumbing

A Set of Services

Market Drivers

Microsoft Worldview

ABM Worldview

Whence CORBA?

A Business Decision


Buy vs. Build

Reducing the DIP

The Only Architecture That Matters

XYZ Plumbing

XYZ Applications

XYZ Portal

Building Bridges

Chapter 7: Talent Wars, E-Teams and E-Cultures

The Mission

Signing Up

No One Gets Left Behind (the WIIFM)

Natural Leaders

Leading the Congregation

Breaking Bread

Random Acts of Kindness

Team Identity

Screwing the Pooch - Whose Team is this Anyway?

The Any Good Manager Fallacy

For the Love of the Game

The Economic Unit of Value Creation

Pay for Performance

Don't forget the "e"

Professional Services

The Environment

Shared Values

Talking to Customers

Us Versus Them

The Furniture Police

Talent Connoisseurs

The Recruiting Buzz

Preventing Burnout

Human Resources as a Competitive Advantage

Chapter 8: Knowledge Management & Infotainment

Telling Stories

Reward the Teachers

Small is Beautiful

Information and Entertainment

The Changing Nature of Brands

Screwing the Pooch Revisited

Getting with the Program


Experiencing the Brand

Context-Sensitive Rich Content

Big Automation Company

War Games

Smart Appliances


The European Community (EC) is on a Mission

Individual Responsibility

Great Teachers Front and Center

And Your Point Is?

Emerging Technologies and Research

The Tower of "Babble"

Telling Stories Revisited


Chapter 9: What Comes After What Come Next?

The Soft Stuff is the Hard Stuff

Morning in America

Prisons or Schools

The Good Old Days


About the Author

About the Illustrator

Illustrations and Figures