charge along : Java Glossary
©1996-2017 Roedy Green of Canadian Mind Products
- charge along
- a technique first explicitly formulated by the late Tom Meikle for persuading
experts to give you information they would normally be too impatient to provide and for
worming proprietary trade secrets out of people. There are two variants the rude and
the polite. To use the rude form, you privately or publicly post something of this
form:You, Ms. Expert are totally incompetent. Obviously your
statements are patently false. Ms. Expert then wants to put this insolent puppy
in his place. So she spends an hour composing a detailed reply point by point
meticulously defending her position and in the process explaining it in great detail.
To use the polite form, you privately or publicly post something to the effect
"Here is my understanding of how X works. It might work via option a…
or option b… or perhaps something entirely different. However, my thinking now
is I believe it works via option a." If you guessed incorrectly the experts
will have an uncontrollable itch to correct you. They can’t stand the thought of
misinformation being disseminated. By doing the work of elaborating some possible
options, you save the expert time. She can answer with multiple choice. She also has a
clearer idea of your level of expertise so she knows how terse she can be in her reply.
So if somebody flames you, you can reframe that (as the NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming)
people would say) into a compliment. Perhaps they consider you an expert and are just
trying to worm information out of you using the charge along technique.