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A Word with the Wise: Configuration Management Tips from Steve Berczuk[article]

In this short interview with editor Joey McAllister, Steve Berczuk offers some tips to organizations dealing with configuration management (CM) issues.

Joey McAllister's picture Joey McAllister
Transitioning from Analysis to Design[article]

The step between specifying requirements to working on a system design can be tricky. Fortunately, the basis on which the step is made can be calculated. Paul Reed thoroughly explains how the transition should progress and offers some instructions on how to move properly through this phase.

Paul R. Reed, Jr.'s picture Paul R. Reed, Jr.
The Abolition of Ignorance[magazine]

The testing profession isn't easily mastered, and isn't something that can be perfected by practice alone. Good testers study testing to improve their knowledge of the areas they know about, but great testers strive to find out about areas of software testing they don't yet realize they don't know about.

Alan Page's picture Alan Page
Lessons Learned in Close Quarters Combat[magazine]

Few would think that the tactics employed by military and law-enforcement Special Forces to breach buildings under siege bears any relation to software project teams. After a number of weekends training with ex-military and ex-law-enforcement Special Forces—just for fun—Antony Marcano draws a surprising parallel between the dynamics of modern Special Forces "room-clearing" methods and the dynamics of modern software development teams.

Antony Marcano's picture Antony Marcano
The Key to Good Interviewing[magazine]

The foundation of any successful assessment is interviewing a diverse cross section of the staff. But asking the right questions and asking those questions right makes all the difference in the quality of information you can elicit from your interviewees.

Robert Sabourin's picture Robert Sabourin Lee Copeland
Six Thinking Hats for Testers[magazine]

Fresh ideas can provoke us into discovering great insights: Six thinking hats did just that for Julian Harty, who then applied them to software testing with great success. He, and tens of others, has found the thinking hats easy to use, practical, and very productive. Read on to find out how you can apply them to your work.

Julian Harty's picture Julian Harty
What's a Manager to Do?[magazine]

Self-organizing teams still need managers. But those managers need to rethink how they do their jobs and consider how much self-management the team can take on. Finding the sweet spot between hands on and hands off is the key.

Esther Derby's picture Esther Derby
A Map by Any Other Name[magazine]

A mapping illustrates a relationship between two things. In testing, a map might look like a road map, but it might also look like a list, a chart, a table, or a pile of stories. We can use any of these to help us think about test coverage.

Michael Bolton's picture Michael Bolton
Don't Fear the Repartee[magazine]

Conflict reduces people's productivity and generosity toward the organization and their coworkers. These four steps can help defuse a conflict situation and improve the chances for a solution that at the least, both parties can live with.

Nance Goldstein's picture Nance Goldstein
Train Wreck Spotting[magazine]

An oft-overlooked goal of encapsulation is to simplify usage. Without this sensibility, classes can end up with simplistic interfaces and callers can end up with method-call pile-ups.

Kevlin Henney's picture Kevlin Henney
Little Scrum Pigs and the Big, Bad Wolf[article]

While continuing to grow, the state of agile adoption seems to be plucked straight out of an Ayn Rand novel, where the acceptance of mediocrity has infected the masses like a plague. Half-hearted adoptions have led to half-hearted results (as in "we suck less") that in turn are leaving these organizations straddling a tipping point from which they more often than not slide backwards, rather than making the push over the top to high performance and exponential growth in ROI.

Michele Sliger's picture Michele Sliger
Simple Strategies to Keep Quality Visible[article]

In most projects, testers are the keepers of quality. Sharing the vision of quality with the entire team helps everyone involved in a project play a more active role in determining the state of quality in a product. In this column, Jeff Patton shares several innovative ideas he's seen in practice lately that have helped an entire team own up to the quality of its software.

Jeff Patton's picture Jeff Patton
Getting Started with Agile SCM[article]

A prerequisite to any of the Agile SCM practices, such as integration build, private build, unit tests, and the like, is being able to set up a developer’s private workspace with the right code and tools so that you can code, build and test. In this article, we discuss the important, and often overlooked process of creating a development workspace, which is to say, getting started.

The Invisible Project Manager[article]

An Exercise in Agile Facilitation

A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves. Lao Tzu, Chinese philosopher (604 BC - 531 BC).

The project manager leads. The project manager directs. The project manager plans. The project manager manages. These are the expectations set upon, and sought out by those that take on the responsibility for delivering software projects to the Business. While unquestionably a critical role in the overall delivery mechanism, a project manager who becomes the central figure in the team can unnecessarily place the team in a position of risk. In fact, the project manager should approach the process with a less intrusive style, facilitating the team towards success from within and figuring out ways to develop systems that will survive any one person, themselves included.

Mack Adams's picture Mack Adams
Relearning to Program[article]

Twenty years ago, Clarke Ching fell in love with programming. Then he got a job doing just that and fell out of love within five years. Fifteen years later, Clarke sought the help of a well-known programmer for advice on how to rekindle his dormant passion for programming. The advice Clarke received led to a greater discovery.

Clarke Ching's picture Clarke Ching

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