The power of simple words

“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated..”
Confucius.

As technologists, we all have a tendency to speak in jargon with our peers. Having worked on OSS projects in many countries, I’ve been amazed at how different the OSS jargon is within our industry, within different companies and even by different groups within a company. As such, communication gaps are common in an already complex arena.

Three things have helped me. Simple words, simple diagrams and spending time developing a common set of terminologies up front. A fourth one is taking the time to share stories with colleagues and customers to build that common language.

I often use a terminology map similar to the tool shown here in the early stages of a project.

What techniques have you found important when overcoming the communication gap on your OctopOSS?

For some extra quotes about simplicity, check out this page.

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