Finally, I’m taking a break from leankit kanban for a bit while I experiment with Todoist. So far, I’m liking it, but I’m already tweaking it to see if I can get it to mimic WIP, so we’ll see how the experiment goes.
Another dreary wet day in the pacific northwest. Here are a few things I found interesting this week.
FocusMate is an interesting idea. It connects you with an anonymous person over video, and you each just work on your stuff. The idea is, that if someone is watching you, that you are less likely to goof off.
Steve Denning appears yet again in FfF with an article on Fake Agile
MMA (Midi Musical Accompaniment) is a command line program that takes plain text input and turns it into a midi file. It’s a slightly nerdier alternative to the Band-in-a-Box software I used ~20 years ago.
I was a guest on the Test & Code podcast recently. Just me rambling about the normal things, but worth checking out to see if I say anything controversial.
The Heisenbug Conference call for papers is open. These folks treat speakers like rock stars, and I highly recommend the conference.
Speaking of conferences, it’s almost time for the Online Test Conference. The lineup is incredible (and I’d say that even if Brent Jensen and I weren’t speaking), it’s free, and you can attend from home.
Still loving my new role at Unity. As I look at the links I saved this week, I’m wondering if an analysis of my FfF posts over the last 18 months will show trends in my actual day-to-day work. I’ll leave that random thought for those smarter than me to investigate.
If this isn’t the first time you’ve read something of mine, you know that I think testing is evolving into something that isn’t the testing of 10 years ago. #oneofthethree listeners of AB Testing has this nice post on good activities for testers.
At the same time as testers are doing more than testing, developers are doing a lot more testing. I liked this post on writing testable code.
I’ve thought for a long time that there must be reasons why comedians make good leaders – now there’s an article about this exact thing. I don’t agree completely with the appoint about using comedy to soften criticism, as it may prevent the message from being “heard”, but there’s value in all eight of these reasons
I’ve been listening to the Tech Talk Y’all podcast for a few months now, and it will stay on my download list. The show is just a quick recap of tech stories from the last week along with a few recommendations from the hosts daily life. They try to have fun, and manage to do so without being annoying.
I read Strategize by Roman Pichler last week. It’s written for product managers, but I think it’s a great book for anyone who wants to create (or be part of a team creating) software for people. This line could be right out of The Lean Startup:
A product roadmap is not a guarantee; it is a high-level plan that describes the likely growth of your product based on what you currently know.
My new role involves some product and program planning tasks, and keeping this line in mind has been helpful.
I think (hope) everyone knows that this blog series is based entirely on Tim Ferris’s Five Bullet Friday posts. I listen to some of Tim’s podcasts – and his recent interview with Eric Schmidt is fantastic. If you don’t like podcasts, there’s a transcript here.
I’ve been thinking about interviewing and hiring – so of course, I’ve found a few good articles. This one from hackernoon on How to Hire the Best Developers is interesting.
A disclaimer: I often find good blog articles on commercial sites. If I think they’re worth reading, I share them anyway – even if I don’t endorse the company. That said, The Ten Qualities of a True Leader.
I’m reading Brave New Work – which is one of those books I love because it agrees with my principles and philosophies so much. Consider this harsh – yet accurate quote about managers.
After a broad workforce analysis, [Gary] Hamel and his coauthor, Michele Zanini, claim that roughly half of the 23.8 million management roles in the United States are unnecessary. They found that a new wave of companies (including many featured in this book) have managed to cut their manager-to-employee ratio in half while keeping performance up.
Before the bullet points, I want to remind everyone that the 100th episode of AB Testing will be done live (via Zoom) at 8am PDT next Friday (April 12). If you want to listen in or participate, drop me a note (on twitter – @alanpage, in the comments, or email alan at <the domain where this is hosted>.
OK – off to the five interesting things I have to share…
Shhh – I sort of don’t like Scrum. Not because it doesn’t work – for some reason it’s just too easy to do wrong. Nevertheless, I still read a lot about where it works and doesn’t work, and sometimes I find an article that hits a lot of the good points about Scrum on the head. Why most Scrum Masters are destined to fail
If you don’t know me, you may be asking, “if you’re not into Scrum, what’s your deal?” I prefer kanban – it’s simple and focuses on flow. And as usual, someone else described a lot about what I like better than I could have. Running a Kanban Standup Meeting
I often wonder how many people who freak out over the concept of “Test is Dead” ever watched Alberto Savoia’s original talk.
Albert says: “Of the 50,000+ people who saw the video, 90%+ (based on thumbs up/down ratings) got the message. But a small minority focused too much on the title and too little on the message.”
If you’ve understood the nuance behind the statement and the underlying message all along, congratulations. For the rest of you stuck on the three words in the title of his talk over substance and discussion, hopefully this video from Alberto himself will give you something to chew on.