Articles

Lines of code Project Teams Need to Overcome Their Fear of Coding

Many organizations appear to suffer anxiety at the thought of programming. They want to get everyone but the programmers in a room to discuss a project down to the minute and the dollar, without a full understanding of the coding required. But a few hours of code experimentation generates far more understanding than days of debate by architects and analysts. Don't be scared of programming.

Allan Kelly's picture Allan Kelly
Erasing debt on a page Paying Off the Technical Debt in Your Agile Projects

Just as you should not take out a financial loan without having a plan to pay it back, you should also have a plan when incurring technical debt. The most important thing is to have transparency—adequate tracking and visibility of the debt. Armed with the knowledge of these pending tasks, the team can devise a strategy for when and how to “pay off” technical debt.

Nishi Grover Garg's picture Nishi Grover Garg
Code on a computer screen Code Health Kaizen: Self-Organizing for Agile Improvement

People at Ben Kopel's organization were interested in improving their code health. It was something the engineers had control over and leadership didn't need to be involved, so code health was a great candidate for a self-organized initiative. Ben details the meeting they held, their discussions and plans, and how an agile team empowered themselves to improve.

Ben Kopel's picture Ben Kopel
mob programming in action Try Mob Programming to Inspire Team Growth

If you're familiar with pair programming, you know how much it can increase code quality and encourage developers to learn from each other. You should try mob programming—the same concept, but with an entire team of up to eight people and only one keyboard. It's a great way to explore new techniques and solve problems as a team.

Mark Richards's picture Mark Richards

Better Software Magazine Articles

Do You Really Want to Be a Manager Do You Really Want to Be a Manager?

The majority of managers are promoted due to their software development expertise. But becoming a successful manager requires a drastic change of focus. There is a set of expectations to consider before making that leap to the “dark side.”

Ron Lichty's picture Ron Lichty MW Mantle
Playing Games to Improve Software

You may not have heard about gamification, but instructional designers are now using game principles to help with retention of learned material in many forms of training. Ross Smith and Rajini Padmanaban believe that developers' UX and app design can benefit from gamification.

Ross Smith's picture Ross Smith Rajini Padmanaban
When Software Smells Bad

Most software needs to be "maintainable" and have high "internal quality." But what does that mean in practical terms? Code smells form a vocabulary for discussing code quality and how well suited code might be to change. The smells also provide good indications as to what to refactor and how.

Leveraging A Learning Culture

Mistakes happen. It's how you respond to them that matters. Teams might react to a bug with panic and blame, leading to a quickly hacked fix and possibly more issues. Taking time to investigate and learn leverages problems into process and practice improvement and a higher quality product.

Lisa Crispin's picture Lisa Crispin

Interviews

Melissa Benua discusses continuous integration Employ Continuous Integration Processes to Make Your Code Work: An Interview with Melissa Benua
Video

In this interview, Melissa Benua, senior backend engineer for PlayFab, explains the new way of life that continuous integration brings. She imparts practical advice for creating builds and running automation on the fly without spending hundreds of hours or thousands of dollars.

Jennifer Bonine's picture Jennifer Bonine
Mobile software developer Josh Michaels Mobile Development and Aggressive Testing: An Interview with Josh Michaels
Video

Josh Michaels is an independent software developer who makes apps for the iPad, iPhone, and Mac under the company name Jetson Creative. In this interview, Josh discusses mobile development, testing aggressively, and keeping users happy. 

Jonathan Vanian's picture Jonathan Vanian
Joe Justice inventor of the Extreme Manufacturing project management method For Maximum Awesome: An Interview with Joe Justice
Video

Joe Justice is a consultant at Scrum Inc. and inventor of the Extreme Manufacturing project management method. He also is the founder of Team WIKISPEED, an all-Scrum volunteer-based, "green” automotive prototyping company.

Cameron Philipp-Edmonds's picture Cameron Philipp-Edmonds
Maintaining the Programming Mob: An Interview with Woody Zuill
Video

"Fun" and "kindness" aren't the first things that come to mind when thinking of the mob, but in software development—they're mandatory. Woody Zuill discusses how mob programming takes a very agile and collaborative effort at delivering great software on time, and with the respect of everyone on board.

Noel Wurst's picture Noel Wurst

Conference Presentations

Mobile Dev Test Threads, Queues, and More: Async Programming in iOS
Slideshow

To keep your iOS app running butter-smooth at 60 frames per second, Apple recommends doing as many tasks as possible asynchronously or “off the main thread.” Joe Keeley introduces you to some basic concepts of asynchronous programming in iOS. He discusses what threads and queues are, how...

Joe Keeley
Program Management: Collaborating across the Organization
Slideshow

To be most effective when managing a large program, the component projects should limit their batch size, create networks of people, and report status in a way that works for the entire program. For those of you who are not quite ready for agile, Johanna Rothman explains how to use staged...

Johanna Rothman, Rothman Consulting Group Inc.
When Code Cries: Listening to Code
Slideshow

What is the best way to learn a new programming language or improve coding skills with the language you already use? Cory Foy has developed a new method for learning—and teaching—new programming languages and improving programmer expertise on their current languages. 

Cory Foy, Cory Foy, LLC
Reducing the Cost of Software Testing

The demand to deliver more software in less time is increasing. Give in to the pressure without thinking, and you end up facing burnout, stress, business risk, and, most likely, even more demands. Refuse, fight the good fight, and it is likely the business will replace you with someone else.

Matthew Heusser, Excelon Development

AgileConnection is a TechWell community.

Through conferences, training, consulting, and online resources, TechWell helps you develop and deliver great software every day.