6 ways that pair programming makes development better

Pair programming might seem ridiculous at first, but it’s a proven, better way to program and do related work. In this episode, I go over six ways it makes things all better: quality, learning, team resilience, happiness, productivity, scaling change.

Mentioned

Chapters

00:00 – I’m eating.
00:27 – Pairing
23:43 – Podcast recommendation.
21:03 – Bye, bye!

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Build alliances for The Big Meeting

Pre-wiring and cross-business alliance building for The Big Meeting. Also: the surprising uplift from regular check-in meetings.

Topics

  1. Pre-wiring, meetings for meetings, and other nonsense for The Big Meeting. Build alliances with peers ahead of time.
  2. Check-in meetings are always good and nicely compassionate…even a cynical person like me gets inspired.

Mentioned

Chapters

00:00 – Agenda
00:32 – Pre-wiring and consensus building.
10:00 – CTA!
12:17 – Just checking in meetings.
16:05 – Bye, bye!

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No one knows what they’re doing, but people get shit done nonetheless

Humanity is divided into two: on the one hand, those who are improvising their way through life, patching solutions together and putting out fires as they go, but deluding themselves otherwise; and on the other, those doing exactly the same, except that they know it. It’s infinitely better to be the latter (although too much “assertiveness training” consists of techniques for turning yourself into the former).

Original source: Oliver Burkeman’s last column: the eight secrets to a (fairly) fulfilled life

Kubernetes for VI admins – VMs fit to the app/apps fit to k8s

I had a great conversation with Boskey Savla (@boskey) goes over kubernetes for VI admins. We discuss what VI admins traditionally do, how that maps to kubernetes, and the new tasks and roles admins have when managing kubernetes. Also: what does “kubernetes in vSphere,” like, actually mean?

Topics

  1. Check out Boskey’s courses on kube.academy.
  2. What VI admins do, traditionally.
  3. Kubernetes is a set of interfaces, APIs, and architectural norms.
  4. How admining kubernetes is different than VI admins: roles change a little bit.
  5. The VM fits to the app, but the app fits to k8s.
  6. Kubernetes is built into vSphere 7 – see Boskey’s blog post on this.

Also, check out her session from SpringOne 2020, “Crafting a New Enterprise App Platform with Cloud Foundry, Kubernetes, Istio, and More.”

Chapters

00:00 – Boskey Savla
01:06 – Her two courses at kube.academy.
01:56 – What is a “VI admin”?
05:57 – How kubernetes changes the role of VI admins.
10:00 – The “API”/interface differences between traditional VMs and kubernetes.
15:20 – Getting started with kubernetes: start with what you have.
19:54 – Putting together video training.
23:57 – kubernetes is in vSphere – wut?
30:46 – Bye, bye!

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It’s not about breaking the rules, it’s about almost breaking the rules

When you want to change, you need to find out what the new rules are, or start following the ones you’ve been neglecting. Also, stop trying to find who’s in charge: it’s probably you!

Topics

  1. It’s not about breaking the rules, it’s about almost breaking them. Remember: you wanted to change, not stay the same.
  2. “We’re the only ones” – Matt Wolken, Nnamdi, and Shafer.

Chapters

0:00 – Agenda.
00:20 – Everyone is good at saying “no.”
01:58 – Don’t break the rules, almost break the rules.
07:20 – It’s you! There’s no one else to ask.
12:31 – Your CTA.
16:42 – Bye, bye!

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Tibco acquiring Information Builders

The takeover deal, said by Reuters to worth about $1bn, was justified because it offers Tibco the opportunity to “access to a broader set of analytics and technology,” said Dan Streetman, chief executive officer at Tibco. “The blend of our two companies, with strong and complementary capabilities, will further unlock the potential of real-time data for making faster, smarter decisions.”

Also with a brief history of Tibco…

Original source: Dotcom era data wrangler Tibco to buy Information Builders, reportedly for a whopping $1bn

Less leadership, more technocracy

Getting good at leadership is always good, but make sure to mind the technocracy as well – someone’s actually gotta do the work! Also: plan for needing gadgets for your gadgets.

Topics

  1. Less leadership, more technocracy.
    • Go beyond high-level “why,” seeking out the “why of how.”:
      • >“I think some of my best conversations came through finding ways to respectfully ask those whys and trying to learn more about the process and why we were doing certain things, and really just diving into some of those uncomfortable situations,” said Liberty Mutual’s LeBlanc about her Pivotal Labs engagement. “But respectfully pushing back and sharing my perspectives, as well, ended up helping us learn so much more because we weren’t just taking it all in. We were really trying to understand the whole process.”
    • E.g., Seek out “patterns.”
    • Tanzu whitepapers, e.g., on ROBO, chargebacks, and TEI for business case modeling.
    • Haven’t read this one yet: Radically Collaborative Patterns for Software Makers.
    • And, of course: my two books on transformation!
  2. Now you have two problems
    • I don’t dislike my dog, I dislike the work and responsiblty that comes with her. I often confuse this.
    • Pets for your pets, work for your hobbies.
    • When the process becomes the product.
    • Be aware of this distinction in your thinking.

Mentioned

Chapters

00:00 – The agenda.
02:14 – Less leadership, more technocracy.
20:38 – kube.academy.
21:54 – tanzu.vmware.com/developer
23:01 – Pets for your pets.
28:34 – Geting started with your transformation strategy.
30:35 – Bye, bye!

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Cloud Foundry on kubernetes

“In April, I took over the job. I said: ‘Listen, our community has a new North Star. It’s to go take the Cloud Foundry developer experience and get that thing re-platformed onto Kubernetes. No more delay, no more diversity of thought here. It’s time to make the move,’ ” Childers said (with a chuckle). “And here we are. It’s October, we have our ecosystem aligned, we have major project releases that are fulfilling that vision. And we’ve got a community that’s very energized around it continuing the work of progressing this integration with a bunch of cloud-native projects.”

Original source: TechCrunch

The drunk under a lamppost app modernization anti-pattern – Tanzu Talk Daily 20201021

If you’re starting your app modernization plans with the biggest, most critical app you can find, you’re probably stumbling through the drunk under the lamppost app modernization anti-pattern. Chances are, you’ll also encounter a lot of resistance and excuses to avoid changing. Also, I discuss saying “no” more as a way to think about prioritization. Bonus topic: deep-fried bread in The Netherlands.

Chapters

00:00 – Agenda.
01:49 – The drunk under the lamppost anti-pattern.
15:09 – Start planning your app modernization journey.
18:07 – Saying “no.”
25:12 – “Too many salads.”
30:23 – Learn kubernetes, free!
32:07 – Gartner on IT strategy “turns.”
35:51 – Free developer education & bye, bye!

Topics

“With in-house development and acquisitions, FedEx would bolt on technologies resulting in an ‘accidental architecture,'”” Carter said. Through its renewal program, FedEx began to “build out the core services and microservices that represent the less complex, more flexible, faster-to-market capabilities that we have today.” From “How FedEx’s CIO led a decade of modernization.”

  1. Don’t get obsessed with the lamppost of pain: focusing on the difficult, critical things and concluding you can’t transform. Use a type of Disruption: work on lesser, cheaper things to creep up to the critical. Mobile apps, store finder, etc.
  2. Saying “no” as prioritization. All these execs saying no to things to focus on other customer and prospect engagement.
  3. Follow-up on strategy: check out Gartner’s “Winning in the Turns: A CIO Action Guide,” July, 2019. Good list of types of “turns” and advice on how to change the way you do strategy. In particular, as TD Ameritrade went over at s1p 2020, change “ROI” to “payoff.”

Mentioned

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Pay decisions, manager tools

This means that, in theory at least, managers should benefit from the automation of mundane tasks and the support provided by ‘technology augmentation’ even if it means significant changes to their job spec — as long as such ideas are thought-through; presented in a non-threatening way they can buy into, and finally that they are provided with appropriate levels of training to help them make the most of it.

I hadn’t had enough coffee to sort out all the survey numbers and assertions in this write-up. However:

  • As I’m fond of pointing out, most “management” and office work stuff (where the work is oriented around The Meeting where project status will be reviewed or business decisions made) has very little tools (beyond Office) or process.
  • People spend a lot of time on low-value decisions: “Another issue is that they spend inordinate amounts of time working out what amount to small pay variations.” This is a kind of, I don’t know, “local optimism.” You think that spending a lot of time on this decision will create a lot of value, but it’s actually just over a few points of improvement that don’t payoff on the time spent.

Original source: How tech will change the role of the line manager, according to Gartner

Shift right to improve corporate strategy – Tanzu Talk Daily 20201020

Corporate strategy could be improved by shifting right, moving closer to the week-to-week software cycle to get more familiar with customers and changes in the market. See more on corporate strategy in The Business Bottleneck.

Plus, I discuss bottleneck removal and thinking about policy and governance as human system, not static “laws.”

Mentioned

Chapters

0:00 – The agenda.

02:51 – kube.academy.

4:00 – Remove bottlenecks to get better at software, always.

22:06 – Amsterdam art nouveau.

24:06 – Shift right to improve corporate strategy.

35:45 – Discovery workshops.

38:07 – Policy is made by humans.

43:33 – Bye, bye!

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Doing something works better than doing nothing – Tanzu Talk Daily 20201019

Summary

Doing something works better than doing nothing

When you put a new process, like agile, in place, you often realize there was very little process in the first place. Also, kubernetes at the edge, T-Mobile, and as architecture.

Mentioned:

Also

Programming notes

Chapters

00:00 – Staycation.
01:32 – Doing something works better than doing nothing
04:36 – BMC case study
09:03 – ending zombie process
11:21 – lack of management tools
13:59 – example of a management tool
15:09 – three small things on kubernetes
28:31 – Your CTA!

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On-premises kubernetes, or edge, or ROBO

You will be deploying sets of microservice applications on fleets of edge locations, and so will need to think about and invest in deployment strategies for a variety of applications.

Questions you will need to answer include: How do we do canary deployments? When do the updates actually propagate to locations? Where does the container registry that holds all the applications sit? It’s even more important that the non-production development environment is as close to identical to the hundreds or thousands of edge sites to avoid bugs in production. It’s also imperative that application and operations teams work together to automate the blueprint using GitOps or a similar approach for the entire stack—to the point that a disaster recovery strategy can be backed by bootstrapping edge environments and applications from scratch in the event a site gets corrupted or damaged.

Original source: VMware Tanzu at the Edge: Solution Architecture for ROBO Topology

Everything is production, T-Mobile and kubernetes

The other thing that we do for our internal customers is we don’t evaluate things in terms of production and non-production. Everything’s production to us. All of our customers are important, whether it’s just internal developers who are trying to meet deadlines for their project, or whether it’s external customers who are interacting with the website to buy or upgrade a phone.

Original source: How Communication Helps T-Mobile Keep Its Applications Up

Case: IRS using lean design

This is a case I’ve used a lot over the years to demonstrate the value of doing user testing, and having a small batch, lean designer mindset in place.

One of the big elements of lean methodology is to determine what in your plan might be an assumption rather than a fact and then come up with a way to test those theories before fully building out a product.

And:

While the product is still new and continues to be considered a soft launch, taxpayers have initiated over 400,000 sessions and made over $100M in payments after viewing their balance.

Original source: “Your IRS wait time is 3 hours.” Is lean possible in government?