Saturday, December 30, 2006

Scum

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/0/00/Meta_process_model.GIF
Image:Waterfall model.png

SCRUM overall waterfall.  Waterfall is more a myth of how power wants technology to be folded.  Waterfall does not allow for innovation, everthing will end up what was planned at the start.

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My Wifes Photo in a Flock Promo



On a personal level this is a major web2.0 event for us.


Just downloaded the newest open source Userland for Mac OSX.  Learning  Userland Frontier if you are interested in Web2.0 is like learning Latin if you want to study romance languages.

The product saved my ass more than once when I was a web master.

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Brilliant Whiteboards

WhiteBoards

  Created by vaXzine

Just try doing this in Visio






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          <

28 December 2006

VaXzine shows how it is done.

I have included some work from
vaXzine flickr site.

These are the kinds of things you can't get in Visio or any UML tool, but can take a project to another level of vision.  I study his work for inspiration,





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Friday, December 29, 2006

X11 Hell on Mac OSX

Despite repeated efforts to install X11 in my OSX 10.4 Intel Mac I failed again and again. 

A friend told me he had the same problem with GIMP and had used SeaShore to solve the problem and I use SeaShore as a native version of GIMP.  That was why I was happy to find NeoOfficeNeoOffice

Neo office runs in Aquia native Mac OS X without needing X11, which tells me it is installed.  I could never get OpenOffice or GIMP to install on my back, but now with NeoOffice and SeaShore I have all the productivity tools.  After all the Mac, the .Mac subscription, the digital cameras, the Flickr memebers, the Blue speakers, and everything else cost so much more than I will ever make in adsense.

So with NeoOffice, Seashore, and Flock installed on a Mac OS X is it better than Windows.  Hell yes.  It is a faster operating system, it boots up faster, it has a far better windows environment and the resolution is better. 

I am not giving up my day job as a SharePoint consultant though.  The problem with OSX is that its half a Mac and half a Unix machine.  Normal operations remain Mac stupid, but if you want to do anything wild like compile pearl or use Darwin you enter Unix land.  There is no middle ground.

With windows you can still go a long wa in the middle area, I would really not want to run enterprise applications on it, or manage 100 secretaries who are used to Windows 2000


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Dave Sifry, founder of Technorati

Uploaded on September 25, 2006
by scobleizer

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Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Do It on Paper

In the project of making society more Agile, to overcome the conservativeness in culture governed by FUD and process.  Our goals are clear and noble.  We aim to replace collective blame with collective ownership of our lives.  We want to embrace change and speed the process culture and society can change.  This is essential to make our economies better, to deal with global warming, and to take advantage of the new technology to improve our lives. 

To these ends we have a number of great tools: wikis, blogs, blackberry, SharePoint, UML, and others.  But what is the best tool:

Paper.

The best modeling tool are paper and a pen.  I have noticed most good designers have good paper and good pens.  When I was trained in modeling by Ray Baries at the Institute for Learning Sciences AI Lab at Northwestern University he stressed the criticalness of not modeling on computer but on paper, and in pen.  You would be more willing to throw out hand drawings if an idea did not work, where as a computer model was more tempting to work through.  The same could be said for pencil drawings.

I take the somewhat radical position that UML is best for a gramme of drawing less formal diagrams on paper and not a design system for programs.  I hold that though all computer programs and solutions can be modelled in UML all UML models can't be programmed.  So the gramme of UML is excellent for talking about more formal code, but UML won't get you to code, only code will.

Scott Ambers above diagram, click for link, shows a good UML usage in a diagram which is still flexible.  An artifact like this is both well formed, ready to guide programmers, able to support more formal ceremony, while still flexible.  Major changes could be made in a matter of minutes to hours, far easier to change than a major Visio document.

Now I love Visio but it really should be limited in its use to recording agreed and to some extent prove solutions.  Project Managers have a tendency to read to much in Microsoft's Visio to code promises.  They will want you to model databases in Visio and export them to Access, which will take more time to make minor corrections not needed by documentation as the project suddenly needs minor changes to the data structure to meet those sudden requirements that happen even in waterfall design.  And the promise that workflows for WWF and BizTalk could come out of Visio are no better than lies. 

Microsoft plays up the Visio promise that somehow documents created by BA and Project Mangers can become code.  Its like Visio will do everything India could not.  No reason to code, just Visio a solution in UML or even less, press a button, test and collect service contracts.

They way I have worked for years is I buy a book for every major project I work on.  In that book I work out all the code and data before hand, along with all the GUI and Structure issues.  I keep the books years later, I look at them as a kind of personal art. 

I've also noticed that many developers lose all sense of proportion in their Visio designs.  Firstly Visio is very much an artistic activity acting like a technical one, and I think that should be kept out of design and visioning time and only allow in to produce high ceremony content for legal or purchase order reasons.  Also I have seen people go so nuts over Visio they end up with graphics that can't fit in a presentation and be read. 

I like to keep to simple Visio diagrams that take under an hour, and I keep in mind that though they should be as precise as ever diagrams presented as ceremony can not say everything code can say, and should not try.  Visio can represent concepts about how code and culture will hang together, it can reference and imply.


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Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Gail Orenstein's Lookism Flog


Image: Shopper




Lets be frank, the picture above is more interesting than the picture below it. Maybe if you are in to feet the girl trying shoes on in the lower pictures would be interesting, but its just a few pictures of boots. The above picture is from Gail Orenstein's photostream The one below from MSNBC.Tradition news media asserts that the images must confirm to certain standards of reliances, decency, and industry standards.

That is they are dull.

One of the reasons wars have been so interesting is because its the only time you see interesting photos in the magazines or web pages, other wise the dullest photo in the world is used to because according to the rules the picture must serve the text.Text as defined in Western civilization is the highest form of expression and image can only illuminate or illustrate text.

Marketing firms know this is shit and use images to push the message, but they do it in a dishonest way for purely selfish goals.Gail is using her images of lovely women who work in the sex industry to firstly liberate these women from the judgments of power, and to liberate the attractiveness of these photos to serve promote democracy.Pornography can be a surface for political discourse, and would attract views from people who have given up on standard political discourse as dull. This is what Gail's site is doing and we have called it lookism. Our goal is to produce a pornographic space with global images of other marginal people, including them in the key debates of democracy with chat groups. Everything is interactive, everything breaks down the barriers that keep power away from the masses.

The Pornographic Revolution is happening: Porn + Web2.0 + Gail Orenstein = the Lookism Revolution.

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Monday, December 25, 2006

Mind opening photos from Gail Orenstein




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From the New

More Trouble with Programming

Thursday, December 7, 2006 at 12:00 AM
The second part of our interview with Bjarne Stroustrup, the inventor of C++.

Personalized Weather Forecasts

Tuesday, December 12, 2006 at 12:00 AM
An IBM supercomputer forecasts weather down to a one-kilometer resolution.

Government Website Requires Netscape 4.7 or LOWER. WTF??

Today at 7:50 PM
Don't bother trying to do a buying vs. renting comparison at the official web site of the Government National Mortgage Association (Ginnie Mae), unless you're using IE or NS 4.7. Sadly, even the resulting error message is horribly laid out (wrong spacing, unnecessary line breaks.)

Wikia To Launch Search Engine: Exclusive Screenshot

Yesterday at 4:31 AM
The Times reported earlier today that Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales is planning to launch a new search engine next year, to be called Wikiasari. He’s clearly aiming for Google. He says: “Google is very good at many types of search, but in many instances it produces nothing but spam and useless… Read more

New research could lead to 'invisible' electronics

Yesterday at 4:27 PM
Imagine a car windshield that displays a map to your destination, military goggles with targets and instructions displayed right before a soldier's eyes or a billboard that doubles as a window. Only in science fiction you say? Northwestern University researchers report that by combining organic and inorganic materials they have produced… Read more

Nintendo Wii - Internet Channel - Trial Version Gameplay

Saturday, December 23, 2006 at 1:57 AM
Take a look at what it's like to surf the web with this recent download on the Wii.

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Starting out with Agile

I am learning Agile and I find blogging a good way to try and collectively come to some ideas.  I have found a great overview of Agile.

AM home page

Where Do I Start? with Agile modeling.

The site from Scott W. Ambler gives an excellent if not sometimes long winded account of all things Agile and XP. 

This diagram shows where Agile process fit in an entire Agile process.

Scope of AM

There are also some good models of how the Agile XP process works, with  lots of explanation.  This diagram I have seen a few times and seems a good starting point

XP project lifecycle


Users stories should be written on cards.  As Ray Baries thought me at Northwestern Universities AI Lab to be flexible work on paper, things you enter in to the computer become to fixed for you.

User stories are high level requirements that the customer needs.  Examples would be

The User needs to be able to log in with unique email and password combination.

The User must be able to register if they don't have a email password

The User must be able to see all post made to them over a time period.

As for documentation, I have learned that a RUP or Agile like process can in turn produce more documents than  a waterfall.  You start out with less, but you may need to produce documents at each iteration, which may be each 2 weeks.  In a distributed or long term project code from a Spike may need to be very documented and commented.

Rules of Agile

The 5 whys, know why you are witting a document.  Never produce a document that is only required by process.  Also produce documents not required.  Make if if you need it.

Work in pairs, everything should be done in a pair.  But I find working groups should not go beyond 3, these need to be meetings.  But relationships between programmers is essential.

Establish auto unit testing to prove what you will do.  Probably before you write the code you should write the test.  Take a user story and say "I can test this is true if these things happen in the code", if you have a unit testing system code the test scripts first, than the code.  Run the code against unit tests at all times.

Code to a standard.

With standard code use refactoring.

Don't be dogmatic, accept changes to requirements and ways of working.

Keep solutions and models simple, avoid cute of complex code that exists to show the skills of a coder over a customer need.

Get as close to you customer as you can.

The key is embracing change.


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Take the Agile Quiz

Agile Project Management Assessment Quiz - PMToolbox


Agile Project Management Assessment Quiz
PMToolbox, France - 9 Dec 2006
A) We use XP/Scrum/whatever so it?s all covered by the method, we just need to focus on the practices [-1]. B) They all play a part in selecting and ...

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Always Trashing Technology

Worship God not technology, Pope says on Christmas (Reuters)

Pope Benedict XVI celebrates midnight mass in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican December 25, 2006. (Alessandro Bianchi/Reuters)Reuters - Mankind, which has reached other planets and unraveled many of nature's secrets, should not presume it can live without God, Pope Benedict said in his Christmas message on Monday.



Is not religion a kind of technology?

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Sunday, December 24, 2006

Flock

If this works flock does not suck so bad

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