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One of the more interesting topics in software development (at least from my perspective) is the culture of the industry. Seldom does one find an industry burgeoning with linguistics majors, philosophers, artists, engineers (all types – classically trained to self-named), scientists, politicians, and sales people – all working on the same team in the same IT department.
This creates an incredible diversity and richness – and leads to sometimes astounding leaps and bounds in innovation and technological advancement, but it can also create challenges in basic workplace behavior. This post takes a look at the often overlooked soft skills (empathy, leadership, respect, communication, and other non-technical skills) together with technical competencies as an “opportunity” (aka challenge or obstacle to overcome.)
Added bonus here: I referenced the You Tube 2013 University of Western Australia commencement address by Australian comedian/actor Tim Minchin at the University of Western Australia in 2013 in my post (he shares his 9 recommendations to graduates, my favorite -and the one I quoted – is #7 Define yourself by something you love!) I believe it’s worth the watch/listen if you need to take a break and just sit back and think about soft skills during your technical day. (Warning to the meek of heart – it’s irreverent, offensive, and IMHO, bang on in his core sentiments. If you’re offended, I apologize in advance!)
If you’d like a pdf copy of the post above, please leave me a comment with your email address! (And even if you don’t, I’d love your opinion!)
Have a great week!
With the support of QSM, Inc., I wrote and published this article on a new area of the International Function Point Users Group (IFPUG) website called “Beyond MetricViews.”
While the IFPUG already had published guidelines in this area, the key points to this article include:
- If you want to measure productivity (or anything else) consistently across two or more software development projects – where each was developed using a different approach (i.e., waterfall vs. agile) – one must be consistent in the definition and application of the measures (and metrics);
- Function points are defined in terms of elementary processes and agile methodologies deliver such functions iteratively (not complete in one iteration) – posing challenges to the uninitiated;
- Regardless of whether you measure productivity, defect density (quality), costs or other aspect of software delivery – it is critical to do an “apples to apples” comparison.
Here’s the article (click on the image) for your interest. (You can also visit the blog at www.qsm.com for details.)
Comments and feedback is appreciated!
I’d love to have comments on my latest QSM blog post of the same name… read more
One of the biggest (and not so obvious) reasons that software estimation goes awry is that amateur estimators don’t always realize how important it is to figure out the “object of estimation” – that is, what it is that we want to estimate.
I’ve addressed this issue on several occasions – through a set of 4 blog posts called “First see the elephant in the room (the what you are estimating…)”
This week, I did a blog post for QSM, Inc. on the same topic. Let me know what you think.
Dr Dobb’s online published my article on this topic this week… and quickly comments started pouring in. Some asked why I would publish an article with observations without solutions while others implied that this is really a customer problem or a human communications problem (I agree with the latter) – What do YOU think?
Read it, and PLEASE give me your feedback. Do you agree, disagree, don’t care? Inquiring minds want to know!
Here’s where the blog post was SUPPOSED to post… http://microbrewsusa.wordpress.com
Please enjoy the latest post of the Ask Carol software development advice column… (Click on the image or the link below.)
Another installment of the advice column for software development professionals: Ask Carol – T-shirt sizing for early estimates
As part of ongoing writings on software sizing and function point analysis, I recently posted the following article on the QSM blog. Enjoy!