I’m a nerd. I’m happy to admit it. For example, I loved maths so much at school that I would regularly ask for extra maths homework. Yes, I was that child. When I was revising multiple subjects I would do a practice maths exam paper as my enjoyable break between revising other subjects. Some pure maths theories are beautiful. I mean that literally. They are asthetically beautiful and fill my soul with the same feeling as an amazing piece of art. They are so beautiful that they are obviously right. There is something in my soul which recognises their rightness.
At university I studied Electrical and Electronic Engineering. I took all of the Control Theory optional courses that I could. Not because I wanted a career in control theory but because so many of the theories were so beautiful. The thought of multivariable control theory still makes me smile over 20 years later.
You are probably thinking that I’m a little odd but I think we have all experienced something like this at some point. For example, say you’ve got a few people around a whiteboard designing a software system. Lots of different ideas and approaches are discussed with many agreements and disagreements. However, sometimes you get to that point when everyone stops talking at the same time. There’s a pause where nobody has anything to say and the people just look at the board. Everyone recognises that the option which is currently on the board is the optimum solution. It has beauty and that moment itself is also beautiful. There is something within us that recognises the rightness of what we are looking at.
Recently I was talking to someone about the current agile/lean adoption which I am working on. I described the rough approach and the things which had worked and hadn’t, along with the unexpected discoveries and the changes we had made along the way. The person I was speaking to said that he loves the way in which we can use agile and lean in order to implement agile and lean. At that point I got a glimpse of the beauty in that. There is something ‘right’ about using the same approach to introduce something as what is being introduced. At the very least it shows that it works but it’s more than that. I need to dig into this more and see whether I can find the beauty which I have only glimpsed so far.
Having admitted in public quite how sad I am I’ll understand if many of you wish to cut off contact and run away from the scary woman who finds maths beautiful. It was nice knowing you…