Sometimes you just have to say NO!
Saying NO is important many times in life. Kids have to learn limits, you have to say NO to leave time for yourself and your family but you also have to say NO at work, especially if you are a consultant.
Being a consultant does not mean that you should Con & insult but help the client reach the best possible solution. It is just too tempting to go with the flow and use XML and open source for everything. It is especially important that architects have "the balls" to say NO when clients/colleagues make requests that do not make any sense. I am the first to admit that saying YES is the simplest option to make "the problem" go away but you will pay for it in the long run.
Gartner estimates that:
Trough 2011, enterprises will waste $100bn buying the wrong networking technologies and services. Enterprises are missing out on opportunities to build a network that would put them at a competitive advantage. Instead, they follow outdated design practices and collectively will waste at least $100bn in the next five years.
Add the cost for using the wrong development technologies and architectures and you get a mind boggling number.
Just saying NO does not work unless you are an authority figure (so people trust whatever you say) so it is better to teach/guide people to reach the right conclusion themselves. I am not saying it is easy, but having kids to “practice on” daily helps :-)