Years ago, I sat down on my first day of a programming course at California State University, Sacramento when Dr. John Gwynn walked into the room carrying a wrinkled, brown paper bag full of books. Dr. Gwynn looked like a mix between Santa Claus and a panhandler. He had a shaggy white beard that was stained beneath his lower lip and long, grey hair poking out of his floppy Gilligan hat. The room fell quiet as he stood at the front of the room, pointed to an empty chair, and recited this poem:
The semester has started but have no fear,
The student’s best friend Joe Gunchy is here.
Though loved by all, his brain has gone numb,
So stay on the ball and not be that dumb.
The dude was talking about an invisible student sitting in an empty chair!
Dr. Gwynn then explained that his invisible student will “ask all the dumb questions so you don’t have to.” You see, Joe Gunchy was a complete idiot. He did everything wrong. But, he made all the mistakes so we didn’t have to. Throughout the semester, Dr. Gwynn would point to the chair and say, “Now Joe Gunchy might try to do it this way…“, then explain why Joe’s approach was wrong. Then he would show us the best way to do it.
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes; he who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. – Chinese Proverb (as told by Dr. Gwynn)
The good news is, after many years on campus, Joe Gunchy finally graduated. That bad news is, he got a job, is implementing his first Adobe AEM project and is making a mess of it. Joe Gunchy is making all the mistakes so you don’t have to!
Sadly, Dr. Gwynn passed away during my senior year, but his lessons stuck with me. So, we’ll follow dumb Joe Gunchy as he works through poor planning, wasted hours, bad design, and ultimately a failed Adobe AEM migration. Then, I’ll show you the best way to do it.
RIP Dr. Gwynn. Long live Joe Gunchy.