Engineer. Manager. Husband. Father. Wanna-be Writer. Editor-In-Chief & Grand Poobah of www.kevinwanke.com
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Photo by Michael Shannon on Unsplash

The world has changed.

Upon first glance, that statement seems obvious and almost a little silly. Of course the world has changed. The world changes every day. People grow and learn. New products come out.

The concept that is really on my mind here is the massive changes in the workplace due to the coronavirus. Maybe a better phrase to use here would be something like this:

The workplace has changed. And it will probably never go back to the way that it was before.

Yet, even thinking through this idea, this is nothing new. Go watch an episode of Mad Men. The workplace that we know in 2019 looked nothing like that office ideal. While it can be said that any dramatization of workplace culture and etiquette can only present one ruby-lensed viewpoint of any workplace, some big differences can be seen when comparing and contrasting the workplace of the second decade of the 21st century. …


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Photo by ThisisEngineering RAEng on Unsplash

After recently stumbling upon a commencement speech by none other than Arnold Schwarzenegger, I started thinking about mentors and the people that have helped me in my professional journey.

The speech that I am referring to is one where the man, the myth, the legend himself, Arnold “The Terminator” Schwarzenegger calls out that there is no such thing as a self-made man or woman. The relevant parts of the speech are captured in this edited video:

This got me to thinking. The statement does apply to all of us, no matter what profession we are in. …


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Image by athree23 from Pixabay

We have all come to know and love Emotional Intelligence. Just in case you have been living under a rock for the past few years, Emotional Intelligence is the capacity to manage your own emotions as well as recognize and understand emotions in others.

I am not knocking Emotional Intelligence. It seems to be an incredibly popular buzzword and there are plenty of articles out there discussing this topic. …


Hint: It is no different than the secret to success in life

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Photo by Guilherme Stecanella on Unsplash

It is almost painful to see the sheer amount of stories that pop up in my feed on a daily basis about achieving success in writing for online platforms.

I am just like anyone else, after starting my side-hustle putting words on a screen it was easy to be convinced that untold riches are just one viral post away.

At the time of writing this, I don’t have stacks of cash lying around from my burgeoning writing career.

Yet after a little more than six months into putting myself and my writing out there, I feel successful as a writer.

The problem is, the classic American Dream has shifted from a mentality of working hard and achieving the benefits and rewards of that hard work over time to a viral mentality that has zero collective memory and requires immediate influxes of cash to define success. …


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Photo by William Warby on Unsplash

Kids do not understand the true value of money. To be honest, most adults don’t understand it well either. Society has dictated that we use a form of currency (dollar bills y’all) to exchange effort for value that we in turn give to someone else for something that we deem as an equivalent value.

Here is a quick exercise to try sometime. Try and explain to a child what the real value of money actually is.

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Photo by Guillaume M. on Unsplash

Yes, it is simple to explain that we give a $20 to the nice cashier and they allow us to take the shiny new toy home. Yet, to a 5 year old, the concept of money as a unit of value does not compute. They have no ability to understand what is involved in trading money for goods and services. …


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Who wouldn’t want to be a couch potato for a living? Imaging, the overstuffed cushions, and piles of blankets and pillows. The softness of the sweatpants. The collection of remote controls arrayed around the empty bottles and bags of chips on the coffee table right in front of you.

As fun as it may sound on the surface, some people would have a hard time enjoying this lifestyle for long periods of time. Yet the description above certainly checks all the boxes for the Hollywood definition of the word “lazy”.

This image is highly contradictory against the backdrop of a busy office and the flurry of activity around a hardworking and focused Engineer. These two images could not be further apart in terms of activity levels, but the people at the center of these two scenes have a lot of things in common. …


In light of the #BlackLivesMatter movement: A call to rework the Pledge of Allegiance

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Photo by Samuel Schneider on Unsplash

As a child growing up in America, we had a moment every school day where we stopped and all exclaimed a series of words in unison: the Pledge of Allegiance.

In the current form, this goes something like this (as recited from memory alone):

I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands. One Nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty, and justice for all.

Any errors in punctuation or capitalization are mine, and mine alone.

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Photo by Feliphe Schiarolli on Unsplash

Yes, there is a pledge that all young children were prompted to recite each and every day when starting their daily school routine. This tradition continues, at least in many public school settings, to this day and will continue as long as we can find ways to keep kids safe from the coronavirus. …


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Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

Agile is great. Agile is wonderful. Agile is the savior of all things related to Software Engineering.

On paper.

In practice, classic Agile is difficult, confusing, frustrating, and just downright hard to implement. Because of knowing that many people would argue the preceding statement, we need some contextualization here. Therefore, a clarified statement reads:

At a small company with less than 10 software developers and a handful of hardware engineers, where the projects change constantly and the number of people working on any single project can change from week to week, classic Agile is difficult, confusing, frustrating, and just downright hard to implement. …


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Photo by Drew Beamer on Unsplash

Engineers are like snowflakes, no two are the same.

Every snowflake that has ever formed is constituted from different atoms in a unique configuration. This is similar to Software Engineers where no matter how similar the learning path, no two will ever be identical in their developmental skills and abilities.

However, even with different levels of aptitude, the people that rise to the top and can be considered to be the most successful are the ones that build solid a foundation of habits and skills. …


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Photo by Dmitry Vechorko on Unsplash

What the $#%& are you talking about?

The amount of profanity that someone hears daily has increased over the past decade. This was nowhere more apparent than sitting at home hosting a Super Bowl party and while watching a commercial hearing a guest exclaim: “can they really cuss in a commercial?

Cursing and cussing have always been a part of human vernacular. We even have aphorisms describing the use of “salty” language. Saying someone curses “like a sailor” is stating that their spoken choice of verbiage contains terminology that would make people in polite company blush.

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Photo by Jessica Pamp on Unsplash

You peasant swain! you whoreson malthorse drudge! …

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