a-z tech jargon
Technology Planning and Analysis

The real meaning of… Legacies and Leverage, Leadership and Language

Legacies were once seen as a good thing: Buddha and Confucius left moral legacies, the ancient Romans and Greeks left laws and language that became a legacy to the civilisations that followed. Greek geek Euclid of Alexandria collected and wrote down ideas about geometry and measurement in a text called Elements that today’s students still use when they learn about mathematics. 

But that’s all forgotten once those students graduate and get into the IT industry, where legacies aren’t something you can ‘leveragise’. (Replacing the short punchy word ‘use’ with the awful clunky multi-syllable monstrosity ‘leveragise’ is the legacy of the PowerPoint generation.) 

Legacy is associated with other undesirable and dated concepts such as knowledge, experience and continuity. The meaning of legacy has changed from a good foundation that is passed on for others to work on to something that has to be ripped out and replaced. In the new herd mentality orchestrated by comms technology and social media, the word legacy is used as a pejorative term. If you walk into a goatee beard bar in California, the locals will start on you with the words, “Well lookee here. I think we’ve got ourselves a legacy technology fan.” 

The group mentality created by social media means there is very little leadership. We’re all like a herd of electronic wildebeest, following each other down blind alleys and bumping bodies. Leadership doesn’t exist anymore, because every person can be instantly shot down on social media and nobody has a long enough attention span to……. ooh look at this adorable kitten!! 

Er, where was I?

Leadership these days is a fleeting mirage and it’s simulated by running in front of the herd and pretending to be guiding.  

We could all use a legacy. Mind you, I wouldn’t want to leveragise one.  

Also read:

The real meaning of… ‘As A Service’

The real meaning of… Bitcoin

The real meaning of… ChatBots

The real meaning of Disruptive Technology

The real meaning of… the e-prefix

The real meaning of… Futurology

The real meaning of…3G and 4G

The real meaning of… Hard-wired

The real meaning of... Information Age - interruptive technology

The real meaning of… Jabber

The real meaning of…. Killer apps, Kyoto, Keyword stuffing and Knowledge


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Nick Booth

Nick Booth worked in IT in the UK’s National Health Service, financial services and The Met Police, witnessing at first hand the disruptive effects of new technology. As a journalist and analyst, his mission is to stop history repeating itself.

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