Those of you that have worked with me know that I am a little bit of an odd-duck. I have dyslexia. If you ever see me attempt to write on a whiteboard my spelling is at the ninth grade level. My left brain, used for phoneme recognition, never really developed like the rest of you. My right brain had to be co-opted to help out. But one of the skills I seemed to have picked up due to my over-exercised right brain is the ability to visualize multiple complex application architectures and quickly understand architectural tradeoffs. I am one of the few people that seem to be interested in discussing how XForms, metadata registries, ontologies, the semantic web, OWL, RDF, graphs, business rules, BPM and Kimball conformed dimensions all can work together to deliver elegant and cost-effective enterprise-scale solutions. It seems easy for me to simultaneously visualize two or more architectures and it constantly challenges my patience when I have to explain over and over why architecture alternatives will not meet a business requirement.
It turns out that many people that have dyslexia also have the gift of being able to visualize complex systems. Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Jackie Steward and Charles Schwab are good examples of dyslexic people that have used the strengths of the right brain to do things that left-brain thinkers could not.
What triggered this posting is that I have been reading Proust and the Squid by Maryanne Wolf. This is a book about how the brain's circuits are used in the reading process. She has a wonderful explanation of how the dyslexic brain co-opts the right brain for reading and enhances it functionality. I didn't really understand the relationship between my defects and my gifts .