I'm sitting at my desk reviewing my powerpoint for my SCA webinar later today (view live here, or archived afterwards here). It briefly went through my mind that I feel a little like I'm beating a dead horse, droning on (well, I don't really drone, but you know) about geomechanical drilling problems. But the thing is, this horse ain't dead. Almost all of my work these days is on wellbore stability. Why? Because it's still a great way to reduce unnecessary costs. It never really went away in the first place; industry just started ignoring it because the focus switched to completions. Now, after years of finding efficiencies (and sticking it to the service companies, just sayin') operators are digging deeper to save money and realizing drilling matters...again.
If you're paying any attention at all to trends in the oil and gas industry, then you have no doubt noticed what I like to call the "terminology tornado." Analytics this. Data-driven that. Hordes of engineers working furiously to be on the forefront of databasing and writing algorithms and all that stuff they started doing in Silicon Valley decades ago. I'm not saying that this kind of thing isn't important, that it won't lead to significant advancements in our knowledge and operations. I'm just looking underneath the tornado at a whole lot of people scratching their heads wondering why Formation X keeps giving them such headaches.
Technology marches on, but there are still, today, real problems and puzzles that need real, understandable solutions. And when my team and I actually help our clients on a day-to-day basis, when I explain something to them and I see a flicker of understanding in their eyes, that's when I know I'm doing something valuable with my time.
Anyhow, back to my slides...