I’m Diana Montalion.
Together, we transform software into systems.
Once upon a time, before Mentrix, I was a writer, bookseller and software engineer who fell in love with content management software. I focused my coding skills on digital information, joining teams to build Big Websites and scale them to serve the digital world. I also taught client teams and individuals how to do this.
Meanwhile, all around us, the paradigm was shifting. The internet became The Knowledge System, information flowing across platforms through varying circumstances. Webpages became “create once, publish everywhere” experiences. Users engaged with information in ever-increasing contexts.
To keep up, my focus shifted from building software to designing systems.
What I discovered, the hard way, was that we don’t think in systems. Our approach to software development doesn’t deliver smart systems or interrelated information. Wherever we are going, we can’t get there from here. This is why I founded Mentrix.
While I’m still growing architecture skills in microservices, event-driven components in cloud-native platforms, structured data with inherently-searchable schema … I’m figuring out how to help people develop the systems skills they also need. Skills that haven’t been considered “tech” skills.
As we go forward, I’m excited to work with learning teams. Because the best part of working in this industry is how we are constantly evolving together.
I’VE BEEN FEATURED ON
I’m Dominic Laycock.
Together, we deliver impactful change.
Early in my career I was drawn to web development. The immediacy of the feedback was a big part of the draw. Creating features and getting immediate validation on whether they hit the mark felt like a game changer.
It was a while before concepts like Agile, Lean, and DevOps solidified that natural affinity into an engineering ethos and practice.
Along the way I was fortunate to build (and rebuild) websites and the content systems that power them. Each transition progressively taught me and my team mates how to maximize the value of the engineering work and minimize the drudgery.
Whether it was leveraging open source code, working in thin vertical slices, or offloading complexity to cloud services the net result was delivering more value with less effort.
What differentiates surface-level transformations that only seem to change the vocabulary an organizations uses from the deep transformations, which feel like game changers?
The most significant transformations for me happened at the team and individual level. The catalyst for change may be external: new thinking in the organization or a shift in the industry. But the fundamental change was in the people.
As an industry the pace of change has never been faster, and will likely never be this slow. Engineers need more than ever the skills, process and support to deliver systemic changes, fast.
I’m excited to keep learning from the emerging trends and practices in DevOps, Lean, and Agile working with organizations to find out what applies to their specific situations and how to apply changes to deliver meaningful, measurable results.
I’VE BEEN FEATURED ON
Recent talks and workshops
Writing as Thinking Workshop
An eight-week course for technologists — introducing writing practices for thinking, learning and leading.
Software Architecture Stream: Nonlinear Thinking
We are used to linear thinking – but nonlinear thinking is what helps with modern challenges around software architecture.
Nonlinear Thinking Workshop
We are conditioned to think linearly. Linear thinking enables us build and deploy software. But it can not resolve systemic issues. For systems, we need nonlinear thinking.
The Hard Skills? Practices for Systems Leadership
In the world of “digital transformation”, software is becoming systems. Unfortunately, we don’t think in systems. To provide systems leadership, IT professionals need an emerging set of (new) skills.
Systems Thinking: Beyond Coding Interview
Designing systems that accommodate for information in many contexts is incredibly interesting. Alas, we don’t (yet) think and act in systems.
Add Dot Podcast: Systems Thinking
Vaughn Vernon and Diana Montalion discuss how systems thinking can help software architects transform software into systems of software.