Posts Tagged ‘Ken Collier’
No, this post is not about technical debt we identified in the software systems used by the Cutter Consortium to drive numerous publications, events and engagements. Rather, it is about various activities carried out at Cutter to enhance the state of the art and make the know-how available to a broad spectrum of IT professionals who can use technical debt engagements to pursue technical and business opportunities.
The recently announced Cutter Technical Debt Assessment and Valuation service is quite unique IMHO:
- It is rooted in Agile principles and theory but applicable to any software method.
- It combines the passion, empowerment and collaboration of Agile with the rigor of quantified performance measures, process control techniques and strategic portfolio management.
- It is focused on enlightened governance through three simple metrics: net present value, cost and technical debt.
Here are some details on our current technical debt activities:
- John Heintz joined the Cutter Consortium and will be devoting a significant part of his time to technical debt work. I was privileged and honored to collaborate with colleagues Ken Collier, Jonathon Golden and Chris Sterling in various technical debt engagements. I can’t wait to work with them, John and other Cutter consultants on forthcoming engagements.
- John and I will be jointly presenting on the subject Toxic Code in the Agile Roots conference next week. In this presentation we will demonstrate how the hard lesson learned during the sub-prime loans crisis apply to software development. For example, we will be discussing development on margin…
- My Executive Report entitled Revolution in Software: Using Technical Debt Techniques to Govern the Software Development Process will be sent to Cutter clients in the late June/early July time-frame. I don’t think I had ever worked so hard on a paper. The best part is it was labor of love….
- The main exercise in my Agile 2010 workshop How We Do Things Around Here in Order to Succeed is about applying Agile governance through technical debt techniques across organizations and cultures. Expect a lot of fun in this exercise no matter what your corporate culture might be – Control, Competence, Cultivation or Collaboration.
- John and I will be doing a Cutter webinar on Reining in Technical Debt on Thursday, August 19 at 12 noon EDT. Click here for details.
- A Cutter IT Journal (CITJ) on the subject of technical debt will be published in the September-October time-frame. I am the guest editor for this issue of the CITJ. We have nine great contributors who will examine technical debt from just about every possible perspective. I doubt that we have the ‘real estate’ for additional contributions, but do drop me a note if you have intriguing ideas about technical debt. I will do my best to incorporate your thoughts with proper attribution in my editorial preamble for this issue of the CITJ.
- Jim Highsmith and I will jointly deliver a seminar entitled Technical Debt Assessment: The Science of Software Development Governance in the forthcoming Cutter Summit. This is really a wonderful ‘closing of the loop’ for me: my interest in technical debt was triggered by Jim’s presentation How to Be an Agile Leader in the Agile 2006 conference.
Standing back to reflect on where we are with respect to technical debt at Cutter, I see a lot of things coming nicely together: Agile, technical debt, governance, risk management, devops, etc. I am not certain where the confluence of all these threads, and possibly others, might lead us. However, I already enjoy the adrenaline rush this confluence evokes in me…
This post is a shameless plug for Innovation Games. Shameless that it might be, it is grounded in the hands-on experience I acquired as a participant in Luke Hohmann’s workshop on the subject last week. Colleagues Ken Collier, Alan Shalloway and Michele Sliger took the workshop together with me.
While Innovation Games had been conceived, implemented and published by Luke more than 4 years ago, the contemporary on-line implementation breaks new grounds in three important ways:
- It ties in ideation, requirements management and software project management in a seamless fashion. (Stay tuned for exciting announcements on the subject in a couple of months).
- It gets over the “too much data” barrier of the paper-based version of the game. Data capture is largely automated now. Data analysis tools are forthcoming.
- It gets over the “across the pond” obstacle. You can play Innovation Games to your heart’s content no matter how geographically dispersed your teams might be.
Not bad for three guys and a dog. Actually, I don’t even know whether they can afford a dog. These guys operate on passion, craftsmanship and mojo…
Postscript: If you know Luke, you already know what I mean by “the Luke mojo.” If you don’t, may I suggest you get to know him. A convenient opportunity might be the forthcoming Agile Roots 2010 conference – the organizers are speaking with Luke about delivering a keynote presentation literally as I write this post.
During my Agile 2006 presentation I made the following recommendation to the audience:
Don’t take your boss to lunch; take him/her to the daily stand-up meeting.
The point I was trying to get across is straightforward: there is no substitute to “touching” Agile and being touched by Agile. Instead of preaching the benefits of Agile, get your executive engaged in the Agile process.
Last week, colleagues Ken Collier, Jonathon Golden and I were on a Cutter Consortium consulting engagement. The CEO of the company we were consulting to immersed himseld in the workshop. I would say he spent about 50% of his time in the three day workshop in which we worked with his team on Agile and refactoring.
This CEO certainly got it [Agile]. And, he took his CTO and us to lunch.
It might have been a breach of my own counsel don’t take your boss to lunch…