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Give 'em the Business

Miscommunication is at the heart of most software defects. Being knowledgeable about a company as a whole, and not just about the specs of a particular project, is just one more way to safeguard against failures. Read on as Elisabeth Hendrickson explains the importance of technical people staying informed about business strategies.

Elisabeth Hendrickson's picture Elisabeth Hendrickson
Testing the Bold and the Beautiful

During testing, testers mostly stress the 'Bold' part of the software and comfortably overlook the 'Beautiful' side. Beauty and functionality are treated as two extreme ends in software quality, where only one of the two can meet perfection at a given time. But the viewers of the famous soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful know very well that both are important. In this article, Yogita Sahoo explains why aesthetics are such an important contribution.

Yogita Sahoo's picture Yogita Sahoo
work completed by elapsed time The Fine Art of Scheduling

Why is scheduling an art? If it were a science, every project would be delivered on time. Overruns have become so common that people have lost faith in schedules and view them as very malleable. In this article, Nick Jenkins explains how to prevent this in your project.

Nick Jenkins's picture Nick Jenkins
Communicating Up

Have you ever read the latest memo from top management and wondered, "What are they thinking? This will never work!" Sometimes we have information that management doesn't have. How we put that information in front of management can determine whether they hear us or not. Esther Derby gives some advice on communicating up the chain.

Esther Derby's picture Esther Derby
Ten Ways to Guarantee Project Failure

Naomi Karten specializes in helping companies succeed in their projects. In this column, however, she gives tongue-in-cheek advice on how to make a project fail. Read on to see if these steps to failure are part of your organization's modus operandi.

Naomi Karten's picture Naomi Karten
Venus and Mars in the Workplace

In the "Venus and Mars" series of mainstream relationship books, author John Gray attests that differences in outlook and inherited traits account for relationship problems between genders. His position is that men and women come from inherently different places and therefore approach things from inherently different perspectives. In this week's column, Carol Dekkers explores how some of the issues in software development might be similarly rooted in differences between the software development and customer communities.

Carol Dekkers's picture Carol Dekkers
Where Are the Testers in XP?

With Extreme Programming, programmers are taking responsibility for writing their own unit tests. What work does this leave for testers? Some people think that XP saves costs by eliminating the need for testers. Does programmer testing really take the place of tester testing? In this column, Bret Pettichord offers ways for testers to provide value to XP teams.

Bret Pettichord's picture Bret Pettichord
Stop Destroying My Team with Bad MBOs

It's 2003, and you're a manager casting about for a good New Year's resolution. Sure, going to the gym, quitting cigarettes, cutting down on the cheeseburgers-those are all good resolutions for you personally. But how about a resolution that helps you professionally, and will help everyone who works for you? How about resolving to stop destroying your team with bad MBOs? Find out how, in this week's column by Rex Black.

Rex Black's picture Rex Black
What Is Your IQ?

People who work in software are smart people. We take pride in our ability to understand complex information and solve difficult problems. What about that other IQ, our Influence Quotient? Much of the work we do requires the help and cooperation of other people, and that means using influence. In this column, Esther Derby helps us listen in on two conversations to see what we can learn about improving our everyday influencing skills.

Esther Derby's picture Esther Derby
Computer Bribery

"There's a little something in it for you if the product is ready for testing next week." To make a date, have you ever resorted to offering or accepting such a payout? You don't often encounter the technique in management books, but we all know that people can be motivated by money. In this week's column, Sheryl Smith imagines a scenario where the equipment is "bribed" to speed delivery. Read on for the point of view from inside the computer.

Sheryl Smith's picture Sheryl Smith

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