Is Windows 8.1 to Windows 8 what Windows 7 was to Vista? Is this some form of marketing strategy to release the a major new version, let it take a lot of heat, then release a relatively minor version and watch everyone suddenly embrace it ? I never saw much of a difference between Vista and Windows 7 but the former was a flop and the latter a success. Is the same thing happening again?
Saturday, April 6, 2013
A few years ago I took a data warehousing course with the Kimball group and remarked at the time that the data warehouse field appeared to have a highly structured approach to designing data warehouse solutions. While building data warehouses seemed to have well established patterns and methods for how to construct them, software systems seemed to be like snowflakes, each one built with different methodologies uniquely suited to particular project/team/company. And no shortage of debate about the competing merits of varying approaches and methodologies. Data warehousing felt like engineering while software development was more like art.
That perspective changed a few months ago when I had the opportunity to attend the IDesign Architect's Master class taught by Juval Lowy. In this course, Juval presented a highly structured methodology for software design. I found the course riveting and eye opening. It was my first experience with a comprehensive proven methodology that could credibly demonstrate a method for taking software development from craftsmanship to engineering. The single most compelling thing I took from the course is the idea that, contrary to appearances, there aren't a paralyzing myriad of options making each software system design a unique creation. This sentiment is distilled into Juval’s Zen of architecture.
For the beginner architect, there are many options
For the master architect, there are only a few
But there’s a big difference between theory and practice, and while an appealing sentiment maybe I’d drunk the cool-aid too quickly and fell for the cult like lure of Juval’s style.
However, since that course I have also had the opportunity to work with Shy Cohen of IDesign, and have seen the Method applied first hand when we hired him to help develop a new high level architecture for our corporate systems. Its an impressive thing to see a method produce an enterprise architecture in one week. It further bolstered my belief in the prospect of true software engineering.
Years ago I attained a Master of Software Engineering degree largely because I craved a more formal discipline to compliment my self taught skills. While my master's studies really never provided that, I think I have now found with IDesign what I was seeking back then. I'm still a long way from taking it from architecture to implementation, nor am I practiced in the Method, but then again I've only begun to study with the masters and I’m pretty optimistic of my chances.
Monday, April 1, 2013
“It’s better to be wrong than vague” – Frederick Brooks Jr.
- More on Craftsmanship-Ted Neward’s continuing debate with software craftsmanship.
- Windows 8 LOB Story-Rocky walks us through the pain of deploying winrt apps to the enterprise.
- I had a recent discussion around the seemingly arbitrariness of the 40 work week. It appears that its far from arbitrary with “150 years of research proves that long hours at work kill profits, productivity and employees “
- When culture turns into policy- A fine line exists between spelling out company culture and inadvertently engraving it as policy
- Every Employee Should Work From Home- More remote work fallout of the Yahoo and BestBuy policy changes.
Friday, January 25, 2013
These posts, originally intended to be weekly, are coming much less frequently. Oh well…
“The fantasy model of collaborative design reflects a monumental unconcern about conceptual integrity. Jill pats the design here; Jim nudges it there; Jack patches it yonder. It is spontaneous; it is collaborative; and it produces poor designs. Indeed, we know the process so well that we have a scornful name for it—committee design. If collaboration tools are designed so they encourage committee design, they will do more harm than good” – Frederick P. Jr. Brooks
- Better remote collaboration will make protectionism harder- A case for the economic advantage of remote work.
- On Knowledge – “There are three kinds of knowledge: what you know you know, what you know you don't know, and what you don't know you don't know”
- Michael Montgomery of IDesign points out a major gap in Agile, the lack of architecture.
- Silverlight is "Dead"- Rocky talks about what it means for a technology to be ‘dead’.
- Port Bridge - Building “hybrid” cloud applications where parts of an an app lives up in a cloud infrastructure and other parts of the infrastructure live at a hosting site, or a data center, or even in your house ought to be simple – especially in this day and age of Web services.
- C# 5.0: More Than Just Async – Very cool caller information that obsoletes the need to walk the stackframe.
- Give Your Classes a Software Contract – Code Contracts seem like a useful practice.
- BI Components for Business Value- Each data warehouse/business intelligence (DW/BI) lifecycle iteration delivers a coherent, incremental data set that provides value to the organization and can be implemented in a relatively short time frame
- Cache busting in ASP.NET – Looks like a fairly straightforward way to do it.
- Cost to enable side-loading on a Windows 8 device
- On the Dark Side of "Craftsmanship"- Ted Neward questions software craftsmanship.
- Surefire Ways To Destroy Employee Morale- My new years resolution is to hit all 9 this year.
- SQL Server Backup and Restore to Cloud Simplified
- Introduction to Service-Orientation- appendix from Programming WCF Services by Juval Lowy.
“stand in the corner and scream with me”
Saturday, November 10, 2012
I just received my pre-ordered Microsoft Surface RT the other day, and aside from the fact that it was 2 weeks late and those at the Microsoft Store were clueless about exactly what happened or apparently how shipping or tracking even works, my first impression was profound disappointment.
Why him? Why not me?
I like Windows 8, I’ve been running it on my PC and my wife’s laptop for a few months now. I have a windows phone 7 which I also like. I find the unified Metro experience across devices and the integration between them appealing. I was hoping that the Surface would basically be an iPad that ran Windows 8 instead of iOS. I wanted the form factor of the iPad2 with the familiarity and convenience of windows (things like having separate accounts for my kids, Zune, printing, etc.).
He’s good, you’re not.
However, the Surface is not an iPad. Most strikingly due to its odd dimensions. Its taller and narrower than an iPad2 by a lot. Its also heavier and thicker. When I tried to use it like my iPad its odd shape makes it clunky. Its not really meant to be held portrait (feels like a giant phone), and holding it landscape isn’t very natural either (like holding a mini wide-screen TV). Not only that, but Surface has its own unique power adapter (I was hoping for micro usb to like the WP7, kindle fire, droid and virtually every other device). Now I have yet another set of cables to wrangle. My Windows 8 iPad dreams were dashed immediately.
I’m better than him!
But then later I pulled it back out and kicked out the kickstand and hooked up the keyboard to see if there was anything salvageable about this thing before I sent it back. Slowly it began to dawn on me that Surface isn’t meant to be an iPad its meant to be a laptop/netbook. With the kickstand up, and the keyboard out I was able to type fairly effectively on my lap on the couch. It even gives decent mouse control. Once I started using it like an inverted laptop instead of an iPad it began to grow on me.
you’re worse! Much much worse.
I think I can actually do work on this thing, and that’s probably the point. That plays to Microsoft’s strengths, productivity apps and BYOD. It remains to be seen whether this bridges the gap for people between work and leisure device. I’m not convinced but at least intrigued.
Monday, November 5, 2012
“I have offended God and mankind because my work didn’t reach the quality it should have” – Leonardo da Vinci
- The end of formality – “Formality is more than a dress code, of course. It infects how people talk, write, and interact. It eats through all the edges and the individuality, leaving only the square behind. In other words, it’s all about posture, not productivity.”
- Productivity vs. Guilt and Self-Loathing
- Competing in forgotten markets- Alan Cooper talks about where the opportunities are in the market.
- Take Control of FogBugz- Fogbugz is customizable.
- Windows 8 Terminology and Concepts – By explaining the terms Rocky demonstrates how much complexity there is.
- Scrum in 5 Minutes
- Bandwidth, Priority, and Service Contracts – “Everybody’s talking scalability in terms of number of servers and memory, storage, CPU per server – but what about the network? More importantly, what happens when (not if) you run out? Well, the latency of your calls increase – and that can be quite substantial”
- At Long Last: The Case Merge Plugin! – More Fogbugz features
- 10 lessons for uncultured web developers
- SQL check v3.5- Free real-time performance monitoring tool
- The Day the QA Department Died
- Jolt Awards: The Best Books
- Linear Workflow in FogBugz
- Todon't – Get rid of your Todo lists.
- Help your users record and report bugs with the Problem Steps Recorder
- Technical Debt – When Do You Have To Pay It Off?
Friday, August 24, 2012
“Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely” – Agile manifesto
- Software Inventory- Joel makes the analogy that unused code is costly “inventory” and discusses three places where inventory piles up: Feature backlogs, bug database, undeployed features.
- Visual Studio 2012 and TFS 2012 Official Release Timeframe Announced
- Is the laptop doomed?- Rocky lays down a pretty compelling case for using a powerful tablet and a docking station as your primary workstation, with some caveats.
- The jQuery Mobile team is excited to announce the release of version 1.1.1
- Here’s why we keep getting hacked – clear and present Billabong failures - Troy hunt details some pitiful security
- Clean up your MVC app with SignalR- Another reason to take a look at SignalR
- Google Now: There’s A Fine Line Between Cool And Creepy
- Announcing the availability of ModSecurity extension for IIS – A new IIS module for adding additional security.
“People can look to me as a teacher, but I consider myself a student of hip-hop”