Honey, I Shrunk the Furniture

7 minute read

It’s 2018. Not being able to visualize whether an armchair will ruin the feng shui of your living room before you purchase it is simply unacceptable. For this reason, and a few others, the innovators at Amazon have released AR View, the company’s new augmented reality shopping experience.

Currently, AR View is only available for iOS 11.0+ devices, but it happened to drop at an opportune time for us. Mind Over Machines is expanding. Adding employees means adding office furniture, and we’re planning to refresh the place while we’re at it. In the last week, we have moved, repurposed or trashed many old pieces of furniture, turning the vibe of the office on its head.

Our Interior Design Objectives

Of course, our new office furniture must be comfortable and durable, but we also want to strike that balance between functional and fashionable. Our office space should “wow” prospective…

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Holistic Hiring Helps the Candidate and the Client

4 minute read

If you’ve spent any time in our Twitterverse lately, this won’t come as a surprise to you: We’re hiring! And like everything we undertake, Mind Over Machines puts our own unique spin on the process.

Sure, that alphabet soup resume with its lengthy language list will more than likely secure you an interview. Talent, education and experience are certainly important. But don’t come in expecting that interview to be the usual IT professional pop quiz. Our hiring process is client-centric. We privilege communication and problem-solving skills over the ability to crank out code. But what’s at the top of our Must Have list? Enthusiasm, love of the game. We need to know you can identify a client’s needs, are driven to find the most effective solution, and are able to articulate the steps required to get…

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Dmitry Cherches Appointed Chief Operating Officer

3 Minute Read

Dmitry Cherches is a pretty exceptional guy. Born and raised in Minsk, Belarus, he spent his childhood disassembling mainframe computers, creating DOS-based computer games, and training as a member of the junior Olympic swim team. His intellectual curiosity and penchant for hard work only intensified as he grew older; as a teenager in the U.S., he double-majored in Economics and Computer Science at UMBC while simultaneously working a full-time software development job.

While many would be crushed by the demands of such an intense schedule, for Dmitry, it was invigorating. That’s because Dmitry is a passionate learner who welcomes challenges and strives for excellence in all that he does.

He’s also the rare technologist who curbs the engineering instinct in deference to the business case. If there’s no ROI, there’s no project. But don’t worry; Dmitry will…

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Carrie Schuckle Appointed Chief Delivery Officer

3 Minute Read

Mind Over Machines understands that our clients want not only the best technology solutions, they also want the process of implementing those solutions to be painless and even enjoyable. That’s why we’re especially excited to announce Carrie Schuckle’s appointment to the newly created role of Chief Delivery Officer.

As CDO, Carrie is responsible for all project delivery, collaborating with our architects and project managers to ensure successful implementation and adoption of the company’s solutions, for maximum client benefit.

The creation of this position speaks to Mind Over Machines’ commitment to not only match our clients with the perfect technology fit, but also to make the process of arriving at that solution as seamless, efficient, and downright pleasant as possible.

And Carrie is the ideal person to make that happen.

“Being a CDO requires a special skill set,” explains Mind…

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Dustin Sitton Appointed Chief Technology Officer

2 Minute Read

We’re pleased to announce that Dustin Sitton has been promoted to Chief Technology Officer. It’s an appointment he’s definitely earned, given his terrific passion, ability, and dedication to the success of our clients and teammates. Moving forward, Dustin is tasked with continuously strengthening the organization’s technical depth and tool kit, and ensuring that we always respond to client needs with the most appropriate solutions.

Dustin came to Mind Over Machines in 2012, when the firm acquired business and technology consultancy The Seva Group. He had been a Senior Microsoft Architect at Seva, and led a transformation of that group away from sunsetting technology to a modern software development stack.

Since his arrival here, Dustin has been instrumental in reshaping our market offering. Most notably, he championed a shift in the company’s focus from Custom Software Development almost…

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Microsoft Gold Partner

2 Minute Read

Partnership means a lot to Mind Over Machines. We strive to be more than another vendor to our clients. Through collaboration, celebrating success, and sharing challenges, we work to be an extension of our clients. We expect the same from our vendors and have consistently found this partnership with Microsoft.

Today we are proud to announce that Mind Over Machines has added Microsoft Gold Partner status in Application Development and Silver Partner status in Cloud Development to our list of Microsoft competencies.

Microsoft Gold/Silver Partner status and competencies are achieved through a combination of team members earning certifications in Microsoft technologies and the firm demonstrating a track record of successful client engagements. We carefully measured the available competencies and invested in our team to grow into the competencies that would best serve our clients.

Mind Over Machines has…

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Pulling a Rabbit Out of the Hat

7 minute read

We had no idea what to do.

We left our planning meeting with the new client and drove back to our offices in near silence.

Normally we leave these meetings with a plan – or at least an idea – in mind.

But this one had us stumped.

The client’s business was providing back office systems and support for independent financial advisors. They made the stock trades happen and provided tools and reports that tracked client portfolio performance, commissions, etc.

The founder and CEO, Robert, had started the firm over 20 years ago. At the time, he was an independent financial advisor himself, and had become frustrated with the robotic nature of typical back office services. Simply executing trade orders and reporting monthly balances was just not enough.

He wanted tools and resources that also would help him build better relationships with…

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Oh, THAT’S the BI tool we’re supposed to use!

3 Minute Read

Surprise, surprise!

Just as Business Intelligence (BI) tools become the hot topic, there are more solutions available than ever…except that there aren’t, because only two of them are actually worth your consideration.

At Mind Over Machines, we’re always looking for ways to help you win. For our BI practice, this means constantly evaluating the marketplace for the best tools.

Here are the top trends we are seeing:

Only BI leaders are BI leaders – No wannabes allowed

The old guard of industry-leading reporting tools all bolted BI solutions onto the side of their existing wares. You would think that having a single solution for both reporting and BI would be the smart match. You would be wrong.

None of these “hybrids” remotely compare to BI solutions written from the ground up specifically for BI.

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What is a CRM?

3 Minute Read

Whether or not they realize it, every business engages in customer relationship management (CRM). They develop and exercise processes and strategies to grow and maintain their customer base, with activities encompassing the entire customer lifecycle, from lead to loyalty.

Most businesses have some process to manage this lifecycle, often involving artifacts and activities like marketing lists, phone calls, emails, and opportunity pursuits. In smaller businesses, sometimes this process is captured in a collection of spreadsheets, or managed in employee email. Unfortunately, many businesses make the mistake of carrying this approach beyond what it can handle. Enter the CRM system, or what is simply referred to as “a CRM”.

Long ago, people realized that most businesses have the same general approach to the sales process. Most organizations speak the same language when it comes to leads, contacts,…

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When You Get Stuck, Talk to the Duck

3 Minute Read
What It Means to “Rubber Duck Debug”

Do you ever get stuck on a coding problem and, to help figure it out, you begin talking to yourself, or to a rubber duck on your desk?  Just me? Okay. Well, it’s unfortunate society associates self-talk with lunacy, because this underutilized problem-solving tool is excellent for debugging.

Think about it: have you ever approached a fellow developer with a tech problem and half way through explaining it to them you magically realized the answer?  It’s also at this point your ever-so-witty co-worker responds with, “Glad I could help.” It was your brain that did the solving all by itself. But how? How is it that speaking out a problem can result in its solution? There’s a psychological reason for this phenomenon and it has to do with the way your neurons associate ideas.

According to the Quarter Journal of Experimental Psychology, ‘ongoing perceptual processing’, or saying the word “chair” instead of just thinking about a “chair”, actually increases brain activity and awareness of that item, in this case a chair.  Educational psychologists support this approach with research indicating that, “Students…

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