Archive for June, 2008

Throw away code after 4pm

June 27, 2008

I very rarely keep any code I write after 4pm.

Code I write after 4pm tends to be:

  • of low quality
  • riddled with mistakes
  • and generally more trouble than it’s worth

I am a morning person, and I often start working at 6:30 – 7:00am.
By 4pm, my brain just doesn’t click like it does first thing in the morning.

I’m not saying there is anything magical about 4pm. 4pm just happens to be the point where my quality of work plummets and I tend to reserve that time for non brain intensive activities (like meetings).

Find your expiry date for the day, and listen to your gut.

If you feel like you are writing bad code, you probably are.

Don’t be afraid to let it go and start again with a clean slate tomorrow.


Scrum training with Innovel

June 23, 2008

Last week I participated a Scrum Master training session put on by friend and acquaintance Robin Dymond, and was very impressed.

Robin, and his company Innovel, specialize in Agile management consulting. Part of their offering is Scrum training and they have some wonderful exercises for re-enforcing some of the practices us in the industry take for granted every day.

I won’t give away any surprises, but if you and your company are looking for Scrum certification training, I highly recommend catching Robin the next time he is in town.

Quality has nothing to do with testing

June 10, 2008

When people hear the word quality, many of us instantly think of testing.

This shouldn’t be any surprise as the words, quality, testing, quality assurance, QA groups, testers are often lumped together when people discuss quality and software.

What is a surprise for some is how little testing has to do with quality.

Quality on software projects begins way before any tests are written or executed.

Quality begins the first day you start your project.

It begins the moment you engage your customers and figure out how you are going to work together.

It manifests itself every day by the manner in which you collaborate with team members, and the spirit and attitude you bring to the work place.

It’s doing simple things, like getting feedback on you product early and often.

It means managing your project, and setting expectations, so that there is enough time to do the really important stuff, and not worrying about the rest.

It means bringing your A-game every day. Getting knocked down, and then getting back up and coming in for more the next day.

I would do well to remind myself of this the next time I need to deal with a problem of ‘quality’.

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