I'm in Australia at long last. Arriving here at LCA was... more of an adventure than I bargained for (but a most excellent one). More on this later.
Two days, two resolutions to contradictions that have plagued me for quite some time.
The first is from a long discussion with Yifan about the problem of communication between members of a community balanced with the desire to have that community be decentralized. After a frustratingly incoherent (my fault) conversation, she went back into the room and I cooked dinner - then sprinted into the bedroom with a sudden thought.
Me: Wait, you were trying to tell me that what you want is centralized communication, but decentralized action?
Yifan: Yes! [probable subtext: That's what I've been trying to tell you for an hour.]
The second is the contradiction between taking initiative and being invisible so others can shine - this one is thanks to Marco.
I think that sometimes if you are trying to maximize effectiveness in a project, your visibility has to come and go in cycles. You become visible to build something around you, something that did not exist before, and then once it is a bit solid you pass it to others and become invisible. Repeat
Sometimes it is true that if you don't do it, nobody else will. But once you've done it, someone else can.