Today, as I looked at my RSS feed, I noticed a new tweep (@AdamMechanic) had a funny comment about twitter. He basically said that he had 'swalloed the twitter-colored pill. With reference to the Matrix, and the blue vs red colored pill scene. So, I thought, what colored pill would it be? The first color that came to my mind was my favorite color of all time. Chartreuse. This color has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. Many things became painted that color. I would hunt it out and purchase items with it. Then it became a fashionable color, and I started seeing others using it. Many more products were available. This too, like all things, waned and I was left alone again with my favorite color.
Back to twitter, and the comment I made about this being the color of the twitter-colored pill. Back and forth a couple comments flew between me and he about this color, and i learned something new. Apparently, Chartreuse is a color halfway between yellow and green that was named because of its resemblance to the green color of one of the French liqueurs called green chartreuse, introduced in 1764. 1764? This, my favorite color for 20 plus years, a color I had tried to learn about and incorporate into my life, has been around that long and was named after a liqueur? I had no idea. I learned something new. I was amazed.
So, even this has nothing to do with SQL, or may career, it does have to do with the power of talking to people, and being open to learning new things. This technique has been applied to my career and SQL in specific. These are the reasons I blog and joined twitter. But be careful. You must do more than just your career and intended goal of twitter communication to make it work. Expand your communication with others, talk about all kinds of things. Not all the time, but often. Form that ever so slight connection with another human on a level that they can share something with you, and vice-a-versa. Repeat the process with this person and many others.
Then, someday, you tool will have in your toolbox the powerful tool that twitter and social networking can be.
As a side note, later that same morning, I had a simple question that was not SQL related. I posed it on twitter, and got 8 responses 6 people withing 15 minutes. Its like a room full of experts that I can stand in front of and ask a question. Some will respond. Others may not. But you will find that when its your turn to the in the audience, and you can answer, and you do, the answers you will soon need will flow your direction when the tables are turned.
So, join in to the conversation. Speak up. Answer questions. Ask questions. Get involved and tell your tales of how your container of knowledge has increased by your interacting with others.