Baruco 2012: Micro-Service Architecture, by Fred George

A fascinating presentation from Barcelona Ruby Conference. Fred George talks through the history and examples of his thinking about system architectures composed of micro services. I found this particularly interesting as it has so many resonances with systems I have designed and worked on, even addressing some of the tricky temporal issues which Fred has …

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TODOs, FIXMEs and a ‘window fixing’ wall

Agile software development places a lot of emphasis on prioritisation of work and elimination or deferral of anything which is not needed right now. An obvious advantage of this is that important stuff gets done quickly, but a less obvious disadvantage is that deferred work can pile up like snow before a snowplough. For a …

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The case against iteration based re-estimation

I’ll say up front that I have some major issues with the idea of estimation in agile processes. There are plenty of alternatives to traditional time/manpower estimation which are at least as useful in delivering real, useful results. However, if you are working in a context which values estimation, Adrian Wible has some interesting points …

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Two good videos

Monday was a bank holiday, so I found a little time to catch up with some of the web videos in my queue. First I watched an inspiring session from TechCrunch Nordic which likens achieving an “exit” for a startup company to dating. Fun, and with a strand of truth. TechCrunch Nordic – Tommy Ahlers …

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Kent Beck on Agile and Lean for startups. A must-watch video

Kent Beck, rightly well-known for Extreme programming, Test-Driven Development and jUnit gave a really thought-provoking talk at the Startup Lessons Learned Conference in San Francisco on April 23, 2010. Watch live video from Startup Lessons Learned on Justin.tv If you are at all interested in software and/or startups, this is well worth a viewing. Via …

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The Opposite of Waterfall is Pond – A Metaphor for Agile

You have to love a good analogy. Here’s one which takes the notion of a “waterfall” development process literally, and contrasts it with a pleasant day out on a serene pond. The Opposite of Waterfall is Pond – A Metaphor for Agile | Agile Blog: Scaling Software Agility My favourite snippet: Eventually, we find a …

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What Developers Need to Know About Agile

Stephan Schmidt writes Agile is mostly driven driven by managment and consultants, seldom bottom up by developers. I found this very odd, and completely contrary to my own experience. From the perspective of someone who first encountered agile approaches in the form of Extreme Programming the problem is almost always how to explain the obvious …

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Chickens and eggs, with a slice

It’s a common software development situation. In front of you is a problem which seems to require a large solution. It has several parts which may be deployed separately, or may just need to be swapped out or independently managed. It has infrastructure bits and business-specific bits, servers, services and clients. Now imagine that you …

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Ruby, Sinatra, Dreamhost, Haml, git – a smooth web app workflow … eventually

I have spent many years developing web applications in Java for corporate clients. During that time I have used a wide range of frameworks, APIs and other useful stuff. I have written my own versions (sometimes several) of many of these components, learned the tools well, and become very productive and effective. However, it has …

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Does Agile coaching set up problems for later?

I have seen several attempts to implement an agile approach to software development within large organizations, and in many  (if not all) of those cases the end result has not been very compelling. This is in direct contrast to agile adoption in smaller, typically single-team, companies. It’s natural enough to assume that problems with implementing …

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Cheap Certified Scrum Master Training

In tough economic times with a lot of people out of work and employers cutting back on training budgets few can afford the kind of big-budget, fancy hotel courses which were the staple of corporate training even just a short while ago. So Tobias Mayer has started a no-frills way to get “certified scrum master” …

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Story Mapping Gives Context to User Stories

We are currently trying to come to some conclusions about the “shape” of a new software product, and facing a whole lot of problems. Stakeholders are happy to argue for hours about relative priorities of individual features, but so far these exist in a vacuum without an overall vision of a product. With that in …

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The keyword in “premature optimization is evil” is “premature”

Agile development relies for its speed and productivity on making only that which is really needed. Sometimes it can be easy to forget that performance and scalability can be needed too. Alex Verkhovsky has an incisive post about how to deal with the notion of “premature optimization”. Thread.current.to_s: The keyword in “premature optimization is evil” …

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