Archives for category: Personal Development

Engineering Long-Lasting Software: An Agile Approach Using SaaS and Cloud Computing, Alpha Edition

It’s an interesting primer on Ruby on Rails, test driven development and agile development. It’s geared at undergrad computer science students and does a good job for that.

However, as an experienced professional, I was looking for many of the chapters that aren’t written yet. For example, the chapters on creating testable javascript and writing maintainable client side code were missing. In a nutshell, wait for the beta edition if you already know rails.

I thought that it was an interesting experiment in lean writing.  The idea was to write just the chapters that you need now and see what the interest is in the other chapters.  It will be fun to see what happens in future versions of the book.


I’ve been reading Wait: The Art and Science of Delay it’s been giving me some food for thought about the strange world of software development. Basically, the thesis of the book is that there is a correct amount of delay between the action and the response to the action. The time scale is kind of irrelevant, whether it’s the milliseconds between someone serving a tennis ball and returning the serve, or the days between making a mistake and apologizing.

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The martial arts school that my wife and I, Academia Duellatoria, go to just did a weekend of demos and free lessons at the Faire in the Grove. At the time, I was thinking that it wasn’t as successful as I would have liked it to be. Until I thought about it some more later.

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As a project grows the role of the guru has to change with it. At the start the guru is the technical wizard writing a lot of code because he is the entire technical team. When the project is large, he isn’t so much a coder but a coordinator and manager of the technical vision. Those are two very different sets of skills that don’t really have that much overlap.

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