Have you ever been given a project with an estimate that was wildly low for the work involved? Have you ever finished a project that looked remarkably unlike the original requirements document? Have you ever been driven to finish a project 2 months before it was going to be ready?
In my second podcast I discuss the OPUB syndrome - why sales and management often over promise on features and time and under bid on the cost.
This is my first podcast. The topic is the 3 corners of project managment.
If you are like me you only have about 6 or 7 hours of really decent programming in you per day. Actually that is probably optimistic. If you are like me you probably have about 4 good hours and 2 or 3 mediocre hours. In fact, for a programmer, productivity might be best defined as a curve with diminishing returns as the day wears on. My best hours for programming are between 7:30 am and around 2:00. After that I'm usually playing catch up with email and other tasks.Read More
My dad used to always say "....the right tool for the right job". Actually that was my brother. I think it was my dad who always said "you are such a tool... why don't you get a job!" Anyway, sometimes we find ourselves building applications that are the "wrong tool." We often get customers who ask us to build things for them that sound neat, but are not really going to save them time or money. We usually try to steer them right, but sometimes we end up building the widget anyway. To be honest I'm often humbled to find out that I don't know everything - especially about someone else's business. The Customer often knows exactly what will work and just needs someone to build it.Read More
Eric Sink wrote that "...a developer is a "programmer" who contributes in non-coding ways. That is so succinct I almost wet my pants. That's exactly the sort of person I'm looking for when I hire someone. Thanks to Zwetan (sorry I don't have a full name or web address) for recommending this excellent blog post titled No Great Hackers by Eric Sink of SourceGear. It's a review of Paul Grahams great hackers essay. It has both some parallels and some counterpoints to my Bob Post.
Speaking of this morning's post I received some excellent comments. Obviously some of you very talented and productive people are afraid I'm referring to you. I'm reasonably sure that no Bob would ever read my blog - so you are quite safe. Let me just take the time to say that I deeply appreciate anyone who would take the time to contribute to any post of mine. The comments are virtually always helpful and instructive.
They call him the fireman. Oh sure, he probably has a title like "system's administrator" or "lead technician" or even lead developer, but his real job is putting out fires. Let's call him Bob. There's "Networking Bob" and "SysAdmin Bob" and "Developer Bob" etc. When the server goes down, call Networking Bob. The server needs an upgrade - "SysAdmin Bob's the guy. If a backup needs restoring, code needs tweaking, some work-around needs to be worked around, some proprietary Application is failing.... there's a Bob that can handle it. He'll come in with fire hose blazing and takes care of business. If a vendor needs placating.... ok... so call Sally, Bob's abrasive - but he does get the job done. The CIO thinks he worth 3 regular employees. Shouldn't everybody have a Bob? Well...Read More
One of my developers (Mike Klostermeyer) recommended an article on tech MSN titled 7 things to expect from your IT partner by Microsoft Business Consultant Jeff Wuorio. I found it to be an excellent rundown of some of the things we preach around here at CF Webtools every day.Read More
Don't you love those initial project meetings. I'm talking about the meetings where the client or manager lays out his or her vision. They come in with a gleam in their eye. They often have an organized pitch well-worn from much practice trying it out on wives, husbands and colleagues. In many cases they throw the pitch and look for a cathartic moment in your eye - that moment when you say "Oh yeah - I get it! Very cool!"
Such folks are visionaries and innovators. After all, they are the ones who asked those big "what if" questions.Read More