Coolest thing in 2012

Several times in the last few weeks I ran across the interview question "What is the coolest thing that you have seen in the last 6 months?" -purportedly one of the infamous Google interview questions from Marissa Mayer. It struck fear into me. My initial reaction was that I couldn't think of anything cool. As I pondered the reason that Marissa asks it - for the insight that it gives about what people think is important - I realized that my initial reaction was focussed on the world of technology. And frankly I've been around long enough that technology doesn't much awe me anymore. At any rate it started a thinking process that has been working itself into this blog post for the last few days.

And so what is the coolest thing? There are several competitors.

Complicated Project Management

The largest transportation infrastructure project in Canada currently stretches 37 km and is valued at $3.3 billion. But how do you build it? With amazing little teams of people and fantastic plans. From the guy who comes in to check the quality of the concrete to the Project Manager everyone has a little piece of the puzzle. Unlike a puzzle though everything has a time and a place that it happens. By breaking the project into smaller and smaller pieces eventually it comes to the daily tasks that get done and move the project forward. Complicated. Cool.

Simple Sand Jacks

Thinking about it still sends shivers down my spine. The ancient Egytians used them. And construction still uses sand jacks today. Piling sand in place. Building what needs to built and then removing the sand. Simple. Cool.

Transformed Lives

I'm part of a program where people are dedicated to changing their lives. Affected by a cruel disease in myriad ways, people arrive broken. Over time by applying some simple principles their lives are transformed. From weak ineffectual people struggling to live, they become strong individuals living life to the fullest. Not just a flash in the pan but longterm deep seated change. The program isn't a flash in the pan either - founded almost 80 years ago - still transforming lives today. Transformed. Cool.

Awesome Drupal

After a year of maintaining the status quo with my Drupal based freelance business, over the last few weeks I have been digging into all kinds of aspects of Drupal 7, jQuery and am starting to think about Drupal 8. I dipped into another PHP/MySQL project a few weeks ago and it contrasted so sharply with what Drupal has become. Come for the code and stay for the community. Where else could I find the help and support to keep learning and improving? Awesome. Cool.

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