Ancestors, genesis, positioning, quotes, ethos++, archive
Ancestors, genesis, positioning, quotes, ethos++, archive
Cochrane History and Relationships
It is thought that the ancestry of this family began with a Viking warrior who decided to settle in Renfrewshire in the C9th. There are a number of theories as to the creation of the name this Viking’s descendants took.
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“If I remain inside the bubble of the norm my contribution to the progress of my species would be slight, but if I step outside and think and do the unusual there is a far greater chance that I might do something significant”
Throughout my life there have been many surprises and many changes. As a child I saw the arrival of electricity in my home, the eclipsing of radio by TV, a telephone in the hall, central heating, and the rise of affordable motor transport. My children variously saw the arrival of colour TV, VHS, and the PC along with mobile phones and the internet. With each step came life improvements including better food, clothing, housing and the opportunity to do new things.
At the same time populations were afforded new freedoms of movement, action and access to information; but as this process is fundamentally driven by a technological (positive) feedback, the rate of change accelerated and people could be placed into one of frur classes: The Drivers; The Copers; The Struggling; and The Lost…
...and so it is now all about 'the survival of the most adaptable'....
So it now falls upon the professionals to help and assist societies as they cannot live, thrive and survive without technology, whilst at the same time they struggle to understand and use it tlo best effect. This may turn out to be on of our biggest challenges!
How do we get to where we are; what is it that shapes and molds us; can we even dimension all the components? No! All we can do is to compile a sample list of remeberances, realised and lost ambitions. Here is mine…and I am what I am!
A loving family
A largely free and adventurous childhood
Meeting my wife
Being there when my children were born
Watching my children graduate
My coincidental 25th wedding anniversary and 50th birthday
Understanding calculus and realising its significance
My ‘Prime 71st Birthday’ in 2017
Working for and nurturing my family
Watching my wife and children succeed
Understanding things for the first time
Fly fishing with my wife
Sailing with my wife
Being with my children and their children
Flying a modern fighter aircraft
Seeing my inventions and products being used for real
Doing things no one did before
Discovering things that no one understands
Working with enthusiastic and talented people
Building new teams to address pressing problems
Watching a loved one die
Seeing people starve or suffer
Witnessing the devastation of poverty
Watching the human race slaughter each other
Not being able to save a life and watching it slip away
Working among people who have lost all hope or do not care
L = s.f.t
Where: L = Life
s = sex
f = food
t = technology
Mountains, rivers and forests
To be: holistic, eclectic, successful
To make a positive contribution to human progress
To seek out and dimension those technologies essential to sustainability
To create creative and capable individuals to power the future
The unique insights and experience I bring to the solution of technology, people, and operational problems have been hard won over many years dealing with technological change and intensifying market pressures. As a consultant I am often employed as a last resort to tackle problems that have defeated conventional thinking. My international reputation is founded on an ability to craft solutions that are both practical and cost effective in the long term. This can involve everything from strategic threat analysis through to detailed technology, organisational design, and roll out. I am also in demand as a speaker at international conferences and events, with regular invitations to present at engineering and business schools worldwide.
My extended education in science, engineering and technology was a seminal period of my life augmented by practical application and problem solving in industry. It also proved to be a key component of my professional career with decades of R&D, manufacturing, operational, commercial, management and board room challenges. In turn this developed my abilities in describing and presenting complex technology, systems and and management choices in a manner that leaders and people can quickly grasp and understand. Another key outcome is that I always focus on finding what will actually work in practice, rather some theoretical ideal.
During my working life I have enjoyed a wide variety of experiences as a TV repair man, cable installer, lineman, software coder, hardware designer, R&D engineer, manager and board member. This has included the design of the first Gbit chip, the writing of machine code as well as high level software, the design of test equipment, laying optical fibre cables across the Atlantic; artificial intelligence, complex systems and human interfaces. I also enjoyed building and running of R&D and manufacturing operations. This all led to a considerable experience as a consultant across most economic sectors, and as an entrepreneur and investor I have also created and managed numerous start up companies. I have also participated in education & academic programs at an international level for over 30 years.
Technology should be our servant and not the other way around, but we have to be accepting of the change and advances it offers and be prepared to plot new routes to success. But in doing this we have to take care to inform and educate our politicians, leaders, managers and people as well as the wider populous.
This collection of quotes were mostly prompted by questions and observations when I was giving lectures and making presentations, but there are also a few that popped into general conversation and the occasional eMail. Enjoy!
As a senior member of society, Professional Manager, Engineer, Scientist, Educator and Agent of Change, I endeavour to invoke a positive influence at every opportunity. In doing so I endeavour to always:
Respect the dignity and uniqueness of individuals
Embrace the diversity of cultures and belief systems across academia and the professions
Support and care for my students and employees as if they were a part of my family
Defend those in my gift, support those above, and help colleagues on all sides
Aspire to excellence and integrity in every endeavour
Always hold perfection as the target, but remember that, ultimately it is the enemy of progress
Consider current and future generations in every deliberation and decision
Assume and/or install leadership where it is lacking
Lead by example and never ask anyone to do anything I would not do myself
Maintain holistic perspectives as to people, organisations, resources, economics and ecologies
Perhaps the single most important thing we do in life is to bear and rear our children, to create a family. The second is to educate and employ people, create new technologies and companies, and contribute to progress the wider well being of our species and societies. In doing both we carry a responsibilty for individuals, and thereby some responsibility of care to their families, and we should treat them accordingly.
We should make decisions as if I we are going to live forever, with an eye to our children’s children and their futures, not our very limited span in our one lifetime.