Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012

One day to finish this bizarre year, and as usual I’m here to write about it. This year was quite moved for me, in fact I’m writing this post 4000 Km far from home. A lot of things changed, a lot of new things I learnt and some new places I met (as new seals in my passport). Historically speaking this year was different from several of which I have conscience, almost comparable to 2008. So there is the list of the milestones of this year, some of them good, others average and few of them not as expected.

  • The year started with a new job. I left my position as teacher assistant and began to work as a BI developer in the Research Vice rectory at my University. I always wanted to work in that field and thanks to some contacts I got the position. For nine months I worked there and I have to say that I learnt a lot of things and that I really enjoyed it.
  • Master Thesis topic (at last). Truth be told I spend four semesters trying to find a topic I like for my thesis. It started as a health systems problem, then I started researching in E-Government transparency and later I worked on technology transfer between University and companies. This final topic led me to the one I’m on now: “Software Process Improvement as an enabler of organizational self-production”. The idea is to understand organizations (like software companies) as living organisms so we could provide an organic approach to their management. I sincerely love this idea because I believe that most of the world problems happen because we have defined the systems (like health or education) as industrial ones. We must begin to see these systems as human systems, and as we humans are organic systems it is just a logic conclusion that human organizations are organic systems. This idea has not only helped me to write my thesis but also to understand a lot of the world we live in.
  • Start-up stories. I don’t want to live an average life. I realized that when I was living in Dominican Republic some years ago. That’s why I have not had a “normal” job in my life or why I don’t have a lot of friends, even people reading this post. Also it explains my addiction to learn and keep improving myself (or my own self-production). In this order of ideas I decided in 2011 to join the madness of being an entrepreneur.  Together with Alex we have been building Win the Planet for more than a year. I built the first version of it (pretty fast an crappy I’ve to admit) but we needed money to keep working on it. So we applied to almost 20 incubators around the world and we got accepted in the last one we applied. That one is Start-up Chile, they will give us 40k USD and a visa to go to Chile and boost our business. We moved to Chile the 25th of July and here we are. We have been working on it for the last semester, we lunched it on October and we have had all the ups and downs (now more downs than ups) of all the people in the Start-up world. That is the main reason why I’m writing this from Santiago, drinking wine and enjoying Opera.
  • Finding peace. In 2011 I started to feel that some things were missing in my life. I basically had everything to feel complete in the western world (a car, a job I like, being a Master’s student, some money to spend and friends to talk with) but I wasn’t happy at all. Then I decide to train myself in the difficult art of meditation. It has not been an easy task to do. But this year, being here in Santiago, Alex introduced me to the Buddhism knowledge. Now I’m reading a couple of books about it, one to learn how to be happy and the other about life questions. These books have been a revelation to me, and I’m trying to put them on practice in my life. Also the fact that I’ve found several points related to my systematic (organic) view of the world has helped me to apprehend it.
  • Other points. Family is OK in Colombia, a lot of people I know went outside the country, governments keep lying and stealing from people, I’m working out more than ever (hope that in 2013 I can see the results), health has not been an issue, I was accepted in an Erasmus Master program but I didn’t have the money, got an American visa, my team (Millonarios) won the championship after 24 years, have not met new people, went to Argentina and full field on of my dreams, and still single

These are the main things that happened to me in this year. The world as we knew was supposed to end one week ago but..., so that means we must keep living and trying to be better each year :). All the things I’ve just written happened because I did them my way, I did not allow any one to choose what I should do with my life, also I didn’t allow the system to grab me and just select the life I have to live. I’ve been running from the normal life, so I’m not going to give up now :). So the best song to end this year is “My way” beautifully interpreted by Frank Sinatra, but as this year I’ve fallen in love with the Tenors I will share with you that song interpreted by the Three Tenors.

I did it my way!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

‎3³

Last week I turned 27, a nice number. This is my second birthday abroad, that means I’ve celebrated 7.4% of them outside my loving country. This may not sound a lot but it is a story I can tell some day :P.

So far this year was more like a normal one. I, at last!, defined my thesis project, and I can just say that I love it. It is about how we can understand software companies as living organizations so all the changes and improvements can be managed in that way. A bit complex but I’ve found a lot of applications of it not only in the software world but in our daily life.

I’ve not started any relationship so in this part of my life I’m a bit alone… let’s hope that it wont last so much. Also I started to work in BI (Business Intelligence) something I wanted to do since 2009. I liked a lot, it is an interesting field and I see a great future in it. The project was very interesting and it had a real impact on how research in my country is evaluated and improved. For the first time I worked in a project that helped in one way or another my country :).

But I had to quit it. Why quit such an interesting job? easy answer, because I don’t want to spend my life working and have nothing at the end of my life. I prefer to work a lot these years that I’ve the youth and the force to do it, so after some years I can have the money to spend the rest of my life doing things I love with the people I love. This is one of the reasons that lead me in June to join Win the Planet, a company that will revolutionize the way we play games and help the world. And now we are working on it more than ever, making it true here in Santiago de Chile.

This has been my year so far. Let’s make this one that is starting the best of my life. :). The picture below is today’s sunset here, just beautiful :).

DSC03057

Monday, July 30, 2012

Moving Forward

I'm writing these lines from Santiago in Chile. Less than one week ago I was in Bogotá preparing my journey (and myself) to this new cycle in my life. I'm here building what can be called "My company" with my friend Alex. Why Santiago? well... because Chilean Government is giving us 40k USD to help us build the company. After a week of ups and downs (that's why they call it the Start Up Roller Coaster) we are finally in what will be for the next 7 months our home and the headquarters of Win the Planet.

This is not just a trip or an internship (as I did in 2008), this is more than that. This is the formation of an idea, the construction of a business and why not the definition of what I will do for the next years. That's why I've called this post "Moving Forward". Each one of us is most of the time in the "comfort zone", a place where you will always be safe, calm but unhappy. Most of the population always lives in this place and then, without noticing it, they just get retired and realize that their life where worthless.

Only the crazy ones (remember that Apple video) get out of it and move forward. It is really hard out there, you will think almost every day to come back to your comfort zone, and you will be disappointed and sad sometimes. But despite all this you will find redemption, happiness, joy, humanity, extraordinary places and people, knowledge, time, freedom, and in the process you will find yourself. And finding yourself will pay all the hard work, trust me!

In the next posts I will tell you about the project, the team, the city, the country, experiences, people, ideas, broken beliefs and paradigms, and other things that will happen during this 7 month journey here in Chile :) .

Santiago Center

Center of Santiago from my window, an ideal place to think and visualize :)

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Life and movies

A lot of water has gone under the river since my last post. I loved to write in this blog but I was “lack of time”. I know that it is the first symptom of killing my dreams so I’m here to fix it :) . So today I’m here to talk about movies. I am a big movies lover, I’ve watched several of them and I can certainly tell you my dear reader that once you have watched a lot of movies there are some will tell, literally or not, some part of your life. Today I want to talk about two of them.

500 days of summer

The first one is the story of “boy meets girl”. This guy thinks that he will be happy when he finds the One, as I think. Once he found her he felt in love so strong that he could not realize how his has lived without her. But she does not love him, just has some relations I have had. After being together for some months, having a nice time and she being there and sharing the kind of things you only share with some really special people she just leaves him. How come do you spend so much time with someone to just quit? Why do you have to fell in love with someone that in the end will just don’t care about it? Trust me I have asked it myself several times some years ago. What I love of this movie is that at the end when the guy is lost he takes the best decision ever: do what you love. I heard once that when you begin to do things you love you will find the love of your life, so when he begins to do it he re-discovers himself and find a new girl. Now I think it is time for me to move on and do things I like, like blogging, so, at some point, and can feel realized again.

Gattaca

The second move is about having gifts that are not enough for society. Gattaca is a near future where most of the people are genetically designed and people who has been conceived based on nature randomness is discriminated. Characteristics such as health, height, eyes colour, skin, sports abilities, among others, are superior and intelligence, fighter, decent, among others, are secondary. If you compare this movie with our reality they are quite similar, and I’ve been living it from the side where you have give the fight to have a decent life. Even when I was a boy at school I always had problems because I did not fit in the rules of society, where being a moron and take the easy path is the rule and not the exception. This reminds me a text a read long time ago about the country of corrupt people (it is in Spanish). When I watched this movie I felt like this guy who has everything to be a great person but as he does not fits in society he cannot fulfil his dreams. Let’s face it: I’m not an Adonis, I’m not good at sports (I admire people who can perform any of them) and I’m shy so it is difficult to start a talk, even if I can speak of any topic with a relative understanding.  These are qualities that are required in society for success and as I don’t have them I feel like the guy in the movie. But he fights hard to gain a position in society, using everything he has in his hands to achieve it. So I guess I have to do it also, face my fears and wake up each day with the idea of do it.

Movies are not someone telling a story of his/her life, for me it is life itself and each one has the opportunity to take it and change his/her way to see and face the world.