What comes to mind when you think about Configuration Management?

On 9 September 2021,  same as last year, I gave a full day of lectures and workshops on Configuration Management for the Minor Factory of the Future from Avans University of applied sciences at the Brainport Industries Campus in Eindhoven (The Netherlands). Coming from about 20 students last year to over 30 students this year.  Niek van Weert also wrote a blog post about the day (in Dutch), check it out.

This year I requested the students to create a Word Cloud at the beginning of the day and one at the end of the day to see if their insights shifted during the day. The question I asked:

 

What comes to mind when you think about Configuration Management?

Each student had room for three entries. The word clouds are in Dutch, but I will summarize the results in English.

 

Word Cloud at the beginning of the day:

Word Cloud at the End of the day:

The top 5 (aggregated/normalized) entries at the beginning of the day are :

Looking at the results of the beginning of the day, many topics mentioned have a relation to Configuration Management.  Which is already very positive.
The top 6 (aggregated/normalized) entries at the end of the day are:

Only “change” made it back on the list but more than doubled. It is good to see that such a day can create awareness about the topics surrounding CM, and while it was only one day and I have not touched all topics of CM. The students had the chance to discuss Identification, Traceability, and Re-Identification, and they did two exercises using a LEGO® brick* airboat to apply the re-identification rules. And what is a day about CM without having played the CM Game? Naturally, we played the game, and one of the teams came very close to the correct configuration. We concluded the program by discussing the change process and the key steps in such a process.

 

Reached over 100 students

So far, I have reached over 100 students at two universities and started to create more awareness around the topic of Configuration Management. But this is not enough. So I call on everyone with a Configuration Management background to see how you can help improve this awareness and improve the exposure of Configuration Management to students worldwide. Reach out to your local University/college, start the discussion, and create your own positive Butterfly Effect. Even if it is just a couple of hours per year. Because what seems like a small effort, a small contribution can have a huge positive impact, and it is a lot of fun!

Feel free to reach out if you have ideas or questions.

*LEGO® is a trademark of the LEGO Group of companies which does not sponsor, authorize, or endorse this site. 

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