Submitted by Mik Kersten on Mon, 10/27/2014 - 22:46
From Galileo’s telescope to the scanning electron microscope, scientific progress has been punctuated by the technology that enabled new forms of measurement. Yet in the discipline of software delivery, robust measurement has been elusive. When I set out on a mission to double developer productivity, I ended up spending a good portion of my PhD first coming up with a new developer productivity metric, and then even more time implementing a tool for measuring it (now a core part of Eclipse Mylyn).
Submitted by Mik Kersten on Tue, 12/10/2013 - 04:55
Open source projects have it good. Their issue tracker serves as the single system of record for all development, support, quality management and planning activity. The result is a theoretical ideal in terms of a connected software lifecycle. For example, every vote that a user makes for a particular bug is immediately visible to developers. As soon as a new feature is added, users watching the corresponding task are automatically prompted to try the latest build and report back.
Submitted by Mik Kersten on Tue, 08/06/2013 - 07:56
Filling out time sheets is about as fulfilling as doing taxes. This mind-numbing activity is an interesting symptom of what’s broken with the way we deliver software today. What’s worse than the time wasted filling them out is the fact that the numbers we fill out are largely fictitious, as we have no hope of accurately recalling where time went over a course of a week, given that we’re switching tasks over a dozen times an hour. As Peter Drucker stated: Even in total darkness, most people retain their sense of space.
Submitted by Mik Kersten on Mon, 03/25/2013 - 05:15
Disjointed tools have inundated the application lifecycle. At its roots, tool diversity is a good thing. Over the past few years, it has transformed the way software is built via Agile methods, open source tools and differentiating vendors. But it has also wreaked havoc on the decade-old promise of Application Lifecycle Management (ALM). We need a new kind of infrastructure to deliver on that promise in a world where developers get to choose the tools that make them most productive.
Submitted by Mik Kersten on Thu, 01/17/2013 - 16:48
January 17th marks the 6th anniversary of Tasktop's inception, and has given me an opportunity to think about the past 6 years, and the next. All technological revolutions require a new kind of infrastructure. This decade will mark the shift to the software economy, with traditional companies turning into software delivery organizations. The problem is that, outside of ISVs who have glued together their own ALM processes, we’re not all that efficient at building software.
Submitted by Mik Kersten on Tue, 08/14/2012 - 04:50
In Total Quality Management, the 1-10-100 rule states that prevention is 10x cheaper than correction, and 100x cheaper than failure in the field. We usually apply this principle to our thinking around defects and as a driver for continuous delivery and feedback loops. However, in much of the Agile discourse these days, the traditional requirement gets left behind. Development has been transformed, from the bottom up by open source and inexpensive tools like JIRA, and from the project management level down by the Agile movement.
Submitted by Mik Kersten on Thu, 04/12/2012 - 14:32
EclipseCon 2012 was my favorite to date, and I’ve been attending since the prototype beers and demos at Thirsty Bear during JavaOne 2002. What made it so interesting was finally getting all the Eclipse devs in the same space as key folks from Agile and ALM. Developers are the engine of the software economy. But that engine is becoming part of such a complex ecosystem of vendors and open source that to scale software delivery, we need to break down organizational and departmental silos.
Submitted by Mik Kersten on Wed, 02/29/2012 - 13:35
For the past few years I have served on the Eclipse Board of Directors as an elected representative. I'm running again this year in the sustaining member category to help represent ecosystem of organizations that have made Eclipse successful, and to continue to refine the constructive dynamic that we have created in marrying commercial and community interests.
Submitted by Mik Kersten on Tue, 01/17/2012 - 23:54
Five years ago, on Friday January 15th, I defended my PhD thesis on Focusing Knowledge Work with Task Context. The following Monday, January 17th, we incorporated Tasktop Technologies. Driven by the years of research that it took to prove that tasks are more important than files, integration is more important than features, and that focus begets flow, we embarked on a journey to bring to market a transformation in how we work and collaborate around software.
Submitted by Mik Kersten on Tue, 11/15/2011 - 10:12
This Friday is the submission deadline for the Agile ALM Connect sub-conference of EclipseCon. This new conference fills a gap that many of us have noticed in the conversation around Agile, ALM and developers. The “developers” part of the equation is often either missing or an afterthought. Even though developers were the root cause of the Agile movement, the discourse around Agile tends to focus on project management related methodologies.