A letter from myself in 5 years


2016 Me: Bruno?

2016 Me: Bruno. I’m so sorry to disturb you. You look so relax on this beach lounger with a frosty adult beverage in your hand. Nice beach by the way, where are we?

2022 Me: Whitsunday Island, North of Australia, March 2022

2016 Me: Huh, well precisely, my visit is somehow related. You remember all those nights you worked like a log, I’m glad that it paid off. You see I wanted to write a letter as if you wrote to me from your today. It’s a stretch assignment from Shannon Tipton, you know, from the Rebellious Reader’s group. It’s based on Chapter 17th From Working Out Loud by John Stepper. 

2022 Me: Oh yes, I remember, nice guy John Stepper. I remember his letter. He was here just two weeks ago, we had a good chat. Since Seth joined #WOL they are both at the top of sales. He was touring around for a month with his new yacht. How is Shannon? do you have recent news of her?

2016 Me: Sure she will be doing on her plan; sangria, content, networking and speaking engagements. Check here How did you pick this place?

2022 Me: I was inspired by a picture showing up on your browser tab back in March 2016. Joyce loved it, did you read her own letter?

2016 Me: I remember it was late after our #PKMChat on the #FutureOfWork. Future always.

2022 Me: So, get to the point. Bruno, you are always to talkative. What brings you here today? Wasn’t it a letter being asked, not an unwanted visit from my past?

2016 Me: Well I started writing and I came across several letters I wrote to you and you never replied. So I felt I better be proactive and Video-3D-Skype you.

2022 Me: Good move, I see this set you in motion, You always tend to overthink and procrastinate. Ideas as great, execution is what matter. #justsaying

2016 Me: I found this letter from 2013: You imagined yourself as a digital nomad, touring with a car around Tuscany with long stays in each place. I spare you the soundtrack.


2022 Me: Lol, yes, *blushing* Kate Bush, the sound of the bell. Collegiate Church, good memories. Connected Knowledge always. Later I realized this was too much inspired by Winck-Denken. End 2015, I understood I had to change my firmware and get rid of the last remnant of it. This tendency to dump all I know, never ending sentences and over complicate was in counter-productive. It was hindering my ability to communicate my vision. So back in July 2013, I was still rambling.

2016 Me: *listening*

2022 Me: Changes came later in the same year when I adopted the beginner’s point of view. Instead of pursuing work as usual, I stop and though: How would a young guy do such a project? I learned and restarted Kneaver that way.  I’m now again on track with the latest technology and design style: CD, TDD, NodeJS, HTML5, web app, Lean Startup, Design Thinking. It as been a great enabler for the future.

2016 Me: I found also this letter from 1982. This was when you stopped your studies but before starting Caroline, your first venture. It features something like “Hold on, don’t let you put down by setbacks, try, again harder”. There are many letters to you in fact. I’ve been lucky to rediscover this box forgotten unknown in this house.

2022 Me: Harder is not the best idea. I tried several ventures, they strived for a while but never made it. This is why I started Kneaver. When teams start, they create and discover a lot of knowledge. They have a lot to share but little time to do it. Besides this knowledge is constantly changing, contradictory and revisited. This is a great obstacle because it limits growth. Often the first ring of founders is very tight or in the case of Kneaver a single person. It becomes critical when stakeholders feedback, social media, Continuous deployment, MVP and #WOL are added. In 2013, I took this option that every past failure was just a step toward the success. I took a fresh start: learn my work again and applied. Kneaver Project is completely made like this, documented on the go. The blog is just one view of our Knowledge Base.

2016 Me: I understand but letting go of your existing business in CAD was a big risk? What if you had failed?

2022 Me: It’s true but without being fully dedicated to Kneaver I always felt I was an impostor. I was afraid to share what I think like you dare today. If I hadn’t taken this turn, I would still be surviving in this Data Translation business, doing a work I hate and with no perspectives. CAD Data Translation was a quick option I took in 2003 to get out a trap. It allowed this World Trip while working. It was not intended to last so long. I needed a new project before it was too late. Time to pivot my life. End 2012, I took this risk to kill this dying business. I stopped taking orders, arranged customers to use someone else products. I was free. I rarely think about what will happen if I fail, lost of time and energy.

2016 Me: Now I can see you look wealthy, happy, at ease on this beach. I imagine you have money on your bank account?

2022 Me: Thank you, yes I’m pretty well off. I’m saving, a new habit. Kneaver operates as  a virtual team. No offices, no hardware. We keep experimenting new ideas. @buffer approach has been very inspiring I admit. I keep turning around the earth to visit each of them, meet users and business partners. I’m very glad of my lifestyle.

2016 Me: I don’t take it, Bruno. You are an epicurean. It’s not your style to stay frugal for years just to reach a better material life afterward? This seems like a meager gain. You could as well got a well-paid job and retire asap. Where is the catch?

2022 Me: I object. I had a visit from an old friend late 2013. We started disagreeing aged 3. We worked together in my first venture at Caroline. He has this well-paid stable job in a big corporation. He’s well-off, married, children, house. I realized that me alone, often short of cash, living frugally like a monk, working nights, and days I was happy in my way. I was completely renewing myself, creating new friendships online, rediscovering my work and above all: living my dream. There was no discordance between the dreams of my 8-year self and what I was living.

*waiter comes by and brings a new glass of frosty adult beverage*

Being well-tuned with the present is my definition of happiness. Being my own boss is a requirement for me. being able to direct my life, and traveling while working: I can’t get enough of it.

2016 Me: Got it, this full circle idea. I admit I live among the happiest years of my life. I understand you have no reasons to look back it as a bad period.

2022 Me: The more so that we share this purpose: I was in the urge to break the code of the Knowledge/Learning cycle: better takeaways of learning from experience and make knowledge transfer faster for everyone in the future. We did tons of experiments in different ways. When I finally unlocked the code the situation changed completely. Kneaver found it’s public, its market. Afterward, it’s the old bowling alley story.

2016 Me: Cool, so you did find it? You mind sharing it with me, like right now?

2022 Me: Lol, Nice try. No, it would create a Temporal Paradox. You will find it soon. In fact, you have it already, you just don’t know. Go back to you last tweets.
2016 Me: Mmm. All those small fragments often lost because they are hard to relate in the fire of #WOL action.

2022 Me: You’ll have to be more clever (Hint)

2016 Me: Fair enough, I think I have enough to write this letter on your behalf. I wish I could stay, it’s snowing in March 2016. This morning I made a visualization board, as you can see above: here and there.

2022 Me: You made a great breakthrough when you defined the mission of Kneaver Corp last month “Our mission is to set you free to use all the knowledge you need to achieve your goals.“. This new tagline also: “Connected Knowledge”. Wasn’t the goal of this letter to find your purpose? It seems you made it: congratulation.

2016 Me: Thanks, I’m glad it stuck, I’m good at stucking, I’m in a 30 days stucked challenge.

2022 Me: *smiling* You will do well, I’m sure. Carry on the good work. Stay on the money. Be a bit smarter, not harder and I will see you soon. Now, you must excuse me, I’ll have to stop here. I have a board meeting.

2016 Me: Phew! Here, on the beach?

2022 Me: Of course, just before our #WOL / Kneaver Meetup. Later I have a #PKMChat as usual, good things stay. Enjoy!

2016 Me: OK, easy to say. See you, same place, same day.

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