Archive for April, 2007

Developers life

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NDE

“You don’t believe in near death experience? then you should work as software developer.”

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Collective nouns

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COLLECTIONS

Acupuncturists/accupressurists: a pain of, a pincushion of, a poke of
Alien abductees: a delusion of, a conspiracy of
Applicants for the JREF Prize: a vacancy of, a lack of
Applied kinesiologists: a weakness of
Aromatherapists: a mist of, a whiff of
Chiropractors: a crack of, a knot of, a manipulation of, a quack of
Creation Scientists: a notion of, a fantasy of
Crop circlers: a spin of
Cryptozoologists: a crock of, a howl of
Diviners/dowsers: a profane of, a puddle of, a delusion of, a failure of, a tremor of, a dupe of, a drought of, a spring of, a stream of, a stick of, a dry of, a desert of,
Faith healers: a frequency of, an offering of
Homeopaths: a dilution of, a quack of
Intelligent Design supporters: an IDiot of
Iridologists: a blink of, a blur of
Magnet enthusiasts/magnetic-therapy healers: a placebo of, an attraction of
Mediums: a fraud of, a rare of
Numerologists: a remainder of
Parapsychologists: a chimera of, a confusion of
People who find Jesus, Mary or Elvis on a wall, refrigerator or tortilla: a raw shock of (get it?)
Prophets: a loss of
Psychic photographers: an exposure of
Psychic surgeons: a quack of, an operation of
Psychics: a guess of
Reflexologists: a foot of
Rune stone readers: a pile of
Scientologists: a lawsuit of, a contract of
Skeptics: a doubt of, a qualm of, an input of
Spoonbenders: a drawer of
Talkers-to-the-dead: a garble of, a Schwartz of
Tarot card readers: a deck of, a shuffle of
Telepaths: a notion of
UFO abductees/believers: an invasion of, a saucer of

Source : www.randi.org

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Deadlines….

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Deadline

“I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.”

Douglas Adams, English humorist and science fiction novelist, perhaps
best known for his novel “The Hitch hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”.

You either get bogged down by the impending deadlines or you learn to enjoy them. Now that I am trying to enjoy the dooming deadline as it approaches me. I don’t know if it will make whooshing sound as it passes me.

As some one said, Schedules are made so that you can miss them. Making a schedule has been a mixed bag for me till now. Spot on if the I am in total control (read individual work) wayward for a group. There is more to programming.

Here I list the schedule made for WinWord at Microsoft for amusement purpose. The chart is adapted from Steve’s Rapid Development book.

Some lessons from WinWord schedule. Aggressive schedule prevented accurate planning. A 60-80 percentage was wishful thinking. The constant part of the schedule was firefighting.

This project experienced extremely high turnover. It had four development leads in 5 years, including two who quit the project because of schedule pressure and one who quit because of medical reason.

Because of schedule pressure, developers shortchanges their feature implementations, declaring them to be done even though they had low quality and in fact were incomplete. The result was that WinWord spent 12 months in Stabilization a period that had been expected to be take only 3 months!

WinWord_Schedule

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Honda does Rodin

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This Honda ad for one of its sedan, captures the essence of Rodin’s thinker. It is amazing peice of creative work by the ad makers.

Who is Rodin’s Thinker?

Hond does Rodin

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Pain of making schedules.

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Making a schedule for the software project is a painful activity. It is amplified more if you do not know what you are doing. Software schedule can be at most an estimation in the early phase of the project. The real schedule details will be available only once the project is underway and things become more clear.

I believe that the developers are one who can contribute to a meaningful schedule, the managers the least. The manager do not have enough information to arrive at the schedule estimate, but most of the time, they tend to push the deadline on the developer. The developers who do not stand up this, tend to agree to the bad schedule and end up screwing their life and work.

There fore developers should vote against a idiotic schedule when they encounter one. They should give or help to make a meaningful schedule. The lead and developers should meet more often to see if they are on track. If not they should take corrective action to get the project schedule on track.

Developers should only consume what take what they can chew, if the deadline is fixed drop the features, if features are fixed then extend the deadline. It is impossible to have maximum features in a very limited time span.

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A new photoblog

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This OCD for starting a new blog, is not going to leave me soon!

Introducing a new photo blog Thrulens. I will post my photographs there and I will restrict this blog to other non photography entries. Please let me know your opionons on my photography so that I can improve my skills.

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Morale killers

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Working as a software developer is no fun. One is constantly bombarded with problems that is out side the technical boundary. One unnecessarily spends time on problems other than the one is supposed to solve.

There are plenty of things that kills the developers morale. The management needs to avoid them if they are in real need of getting things done.

  • Asking developers to do meaningless task
  • Having phony deadlines for the projects
  • Having long and meaningless meetings
  • Not recognizing the work
  • Providing no motivation
  • Petty office politics
  • Not having trust on the team
  • Spoiling the team structure
  • Not giving developers responsibilities
  • Ignoring them

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