Geeks With Blogs
The Life and Times of a Dev Yes, we're really that weird May 2010 Entries
Messing with the Team
Good Product Owners will help the team be the best that they can be. Bad product owners will mess with the team and won’t care about the team. If you’re a product owner, seek to do good and avoid bad behavior at all costs. Remember, this is for YOUR benefit and you have much power given to you. Use that power wisely. Scope Creep The product owner has several tools at his disposal to inject scope into an iteration. First, the product owner can use defects to inject scope. To do this, they’ll tell ......

Posted On Monday, May 17, 2010 11:06 AM

Who Makes a Good Product Owner
In general, the best product owners are those that care passionately about the customer of the product. Note that I didn’t say about the product itself. Actually, people that only care about the product, generally do not make good product owners. Products only matter in relationship to their customers. If a product doesn’t provide value to the customer, then the product has no value, no matter what a person might think of the product, and no matter what cool technologies exist inside of the product. ......

Posted On Monday, May 17, 2010 11:02 AM

The Product Owner
In a previous post, I outlined the rules of Scrum. This post details one of those rules. Picking a most important part of Scrum is difficult. All of the rules are required, but if there were one rule that is “more” required that every other rule, its having a good Product Owner. Simply put, the Product Owner can make or break the project. Duties of the Product Owner A Product Owner has many duties and responsibilities. I’ll talk about each of these duties in detail below. A Product Owner: Discovers ......

Posted On Monday, May 17, 2010 10:56 AM

Cowboy Agile?
In a previous post, I outlined the rules of Scrum. This post details one of those rules. I’ve often heard similar phrases around Scrum that clue me in to someone who doesn’t understand Scrum. The phrases go something like this: “We don’t do Agile because the idea of letting people just do whatever they want is wrong. We believe in a more structured approach.” (i.e. Work is Prison, and I’m the Warden!) “I love Agile. Agile lets us do whatever we want!” (Cowboy Agile?) “We’re Agile, but we use a process ......

Posted On Monday, May 10, 2010 8:42 PM

Agile Awakenings and the Rules of Agile
For those that care, you can read my history of management and technology to understand why I think I’m qualified to talk about this at all. It’s boring, so feel free to skip it. Awakenings I first started to play around with the idea of “agile” in 2004 or 2005. I found a book on the Rational Unified Process that I thought was good, and attempted to implement parts of it. I thought I was agile, but really, it wasn’t. I still didn’t understand the concept of a team. I still wanted to tell the team ......

Posted On Sunday, May 9, 2010 9:50 PM

My History with Agile
I’m going to write my history with Agile here. That way, in future posts, I can refer back to it, instead of typing it out in the post that contains information you may actually want to read. Note that I’m actually a pretty senior developer, and do lots of technical interviews. I’m an Agile fan because of the difference it makes in peoples lives and the improvement in quality it brings, and I’ll sacrifice my technological advance to help teams. Management History I started management pretty early ......

Posted On Sunday, May 9, 2010 8:52 PM

So, I’ve been missing in action on this blog for quite some time. I need to rectify that. Part of the reason I’ve been absent is because I haven’t be able to talk about what I’m working on. A former client watches my blog rather closely, and although we accomplished many good things together, their culture is such that they really don’t like people to freely express their thoughts (you’ll note my blog posts stopped rather abruptly). I learned some really important lessons about Agile in the last ......

Posted On Saturday, May 8, 2010 7:55 PM

Business Choices and Evony
Recently, I’ve been playing a game called Evony, and I finally decided to quit the game and thought I should warn others who might be tempted. I also find a lot of insight with this game as an example. A few of the companies that I’ve worked with or worked for have been like this and they are NOT good places to be. Evony is a joke designed to milk as much money out of people as possible. As a professional software developer who mentors teams on how to build better software, here's what I see: They ......

Posted On Saturday, May 8, 2010 7:36 PM

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