in DevOps

10 Business Lessons I Learned from Playing Dungeons & Dragons | JavaWorld's Daily Brew

Came across this in one of my blogfeeds today: 10 Business Lessons I Learned from Playing Dungeons & Dragons | JavaWorld’s Daily Brew.  Funny and interesting look at how actions in a game are translatable to real-world business events.

One spell, used well, can be more powerful than an entire book full of spells. I first met Ivan when he showed up for a game in Steve’s standard D&D world. Ivan drew up a first-level wizard character who had almost no hit-points and only one wimpy spell: cast an illusion. Whereupon Ivan’s character cast an illusion of a 5th-level illusionist… and proceeded to run that powerful “5th level illusionist” through the rest of the game. Years later, Ivan played in a play-by-mail dungeon (yes, children, we did those things before e-mail) in which the DM permitted custom spells. Ivan’s “swap” spell seemed Mostly Harmless: Transpose a 1″ cube of anything with another 1″ cube of anything. Whereupon Ivan set up a magical FedEx business (for very short messages) and a sideline of an assassin-business (swap a square inch of heart muscle with anything else; who could tell that murder was done?). This taught me to get everything possible out of the tools at my disposal. It also taught me to expand my notion of “What do I have, and what can I do with it?”


You don’t have to read all the books, but a modest description of the beast you are about to face is better than facing a daemon and trying six dozen spells before finding the right one. (If you live that long.) Do not eschew documentation. Learn from others’ mistakes — or from your own. Draw a map as you go. It is easier to avoid the pitfalls and to find that hidden room the next time through.
When selecting a weapon or tool, bigger is not always better. Unique weapons tend to identify the heroes in the room.

Travis Campbell
Staff Systems Engineer at ghostar
Travis Campbell is a seasoned Linux Systems Engineer with nearly two decades of experience, ranging from dozens to tens of thousands of systems in the semiconductor industry, higher education, and high volume sites on the web. His current focus is on High Performance Computing, Big Data environments, and large scale web architectures.