Bad things are happening on the markets, as everybody knows. One can read (and view talks) about all kinds or problems in the US economy, including imminent predicted collapse of the US dollar and some grim political theories behind it.

Putting the political dimension aside those predictions seem to be based on solid economical theories. In fact, opponents of the Keynesian economy have predicted exactly this kind of thing to happen for years. Just no one believed it will really happen, because said opponents (Hayek, Friedman, von Mises) have been saying that for such a long time people got used to it. But maybe the mechanisms involved required a long time to produce results we are about to see.

And here comes the startling analogy that occurred to me today: same thing happened with “real communism” in the Soviet Union – no one really believed it can fall apart within our lifetime, especially leading sovietologists. May it be so that Western-style socialism will collapse like communism – just a few decades later, because it is – after all – more efficient then communism?

I just realized today why I like going to conferences so much. It allows me to think.

This is so because usually getting to a conference involves travel and traveling has always induced high quality thinking in my brain. I don’t know why, but I find the whole experience of moving very inspiring. No matter if this is by plane, train or car my mental gears spin faster. This is a creative time also because this is usually a when I can’t use my computer, I’m not answering phone calls and generally I have less distractions.

In any case I’m finding out, that without a few hours of travel every month I’m deprived of some of my quality thinking time I used to have.

But the conference experience doesn’t end there – it also gives me time to actually listen to people talking about subjects of interest with full concentration. And ask them questions. Not possible with some interesting lectures available on Google Video and other sites. First, because it is surprisingly hard to find a free hour within a day to listen to them. Second, because there is no interaction.

Finally, on a conference I get usually a few hours of very good work on my computer in the evening. Again, precisely for the reason outlined above – less distractions.

Seems like I have to cut down distractions to move faster, the problem is that Internet is just one huge distraction. And with a laptop and Wi-Fi it is almost everywhere now.

The last year was quite successful – I’ve managed to change my development team into Code Sprinters and we did some interesting projects. We also have some ideas of our own that we work on – and here comes the challenge: how to sell a really great idea to a larger company without being ripped-off.

That’s what I’m thinking on when I’m not talking to clients and preparing a series of webcasts about our work methods.

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