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Confessions of a Car Guy – Part 2

Blending Great Technology and Human Ingenuity

Last evening, I had the occasion to see the movie Ford vs. Ferrari. As an admitted “car guy” I found myself sitting on the edge of my seat during the racing segments. The movie featured a good number of scenes featuring my favorite car of all time, the original Cobra…pictured above with yours truly. I was so taken by that beast of an automobile that I even named a high school band of mine The Cobras.

As I have mentioned in earlier articles, my tastes in cars evolved from English sports cars like the MG, through American muscle cars to European luxury models. But whatever my ride at the time, all of the cars I’ve owned had one thing in common…they were well-oiled machines designed to perform as advertised. Okay, except those rusty MGAs I mentioned last year. In the case of those early ego boosters, you might call them “oily” machines.

Fact is, as I matured it became important to me than any car and any piece of equipment, (and any software application) would perform as promised. If a car manufacturer promised 0 to 60 performance in 4 seconds, that’s what I expected. Likewise, if a software developer promised faster graphics or a well-developed order entry module, that’s what I expected and deserved to experience.

Alas, modern marketing campaigns can distract you with the latest shiny object. That is particularly the case when features are added to ubiquitous devices such as smartphones (don’t get me started) and that’s the very reason I coined the phrase “technology is evolving faster than its usefulness”.  Great cars…really great cars have just the features you need to get the job done. Take you from point “A” to point “B”….or do the same thing more quickly or in more luxury. “Not so great” cars are filled with gizmos and gadgets that not only don’t help fulfill the mission but can distract the driver from more important features and functions (such as driving safety).

While working with my dad in construction during my college years he would always remind me to use the right tool for the right job. Seems an obvious piece of advice but I had a tendency to try to strip cut electrical wires with a pair of scissors, for instance before I learned about wire snips.

So, when I started my company, ACUMEN Corporation, I made a promise to myself to offer products and services long on function if low on unnecessary flash.  I also committed to bringing the right tools to a client site so that we could address and solve the problems we encounter quickly, efficiently and cost-effectively. Many times, the “tools” we bring are the mature minds of some really intelligent and experienced people.

If you get a chance to see the movie Ford vs. Ferrari you’ll notice some very committed and talented people blending technology (in that case automotive technology) and human ingenuity to solve one simple problem, beating Ferrari at Le Mans. I’d like to think we continue to take that same approach here at ACUMEN Corporation.

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