15. November 2007
Update: Added links.
Update2: Link to XAMLPad
Some notes about conference conditions
My last day at Øredev. I’ve had a setback. I’m unable to attend the testing tracks that I want because it’s just too freaking cold in that room. This is true for Test, Project Mgmt and Architecture tracks as well, which is at the same area. I had to go to a .Net track (which is normal room temp) and drink a bucket of tea to get my blood flowing again. And I live in Norway, f%&#ing close to the North Pole! They should defiantly do something about this! I saw Michael Tiberg (Øredev PM) today and was thinking of telling him, but he looked very busy, so I didn’t. I regret it now though.
First one that morning (in a freaking cold room!) Testing on Agile Teams by Jonathan Kohl. He basically told his story as a tester and test lead on agile projects and his related experience. He had struggled with getting acceptance of doing testing on agile teams because of their unit testing approach, which they thought was enough. I totally agree with Jonathan that it’s not. Software is not used by computers (not exclusively at least), and can hardly be fully tested by computers. We need human testing in order to find logical errors that computers are unable to discover. Not only that; I don’t believe that you can cover all areas with automated testing. It would be nice if he had been more specific in certain eras, but he had a lot of ground to cover and I understand why he didn’t.
The second session was LINQ by Eric Meijer. I only attended the first 15 minutes, because it was totally not as expected and I had to make some phone calls as well, so can’t really say much about this one.
Back into the cold area (which got slightly warmer) for Holistic Outsourcing by Matt MacGregor. Lot of good reasons for not outsourcing IT competence. I almost felt sorry for Matt and his company for what they’ve been through during their outsourcing process. Interesting subject, but have to keep most of my notes and thoughts for myself for now, because we’re outsourcing as well ;) One of my conclusions though was: Avoid fixed price/time contracts so that the company you use don’t get hung up in your specs and use it as an argument for not delivering the functionality you really want. Change in requirements will be costly if you do.
It was now time for another talk by Jeff Sutherland (PM with Scrum). Very similar to his previous talk, only slightly changed to target PM’s. Personally I’ve read and watched a lot of Dr. Sutherland’s work before, so nothing new for me. Key points:
- Why do software companies as the only industry in the world tolerate such a high failure rate on projects before taking action? Solution: Scrum.
- How do you bid for fixed price projects when you are Agile? You need to do the same upfront work as in waterfall projects (estimate, spec, document etc), but force the client to be a part of your process (e.g. review meetings, priorities etc).
- Government projects are often regulated by government rules forcing waterfall processes.
Last session of the conference for me was Advanced development with WPF and Silverlight by Stefan Wick from MS. I was expecting advanced development, but got 20 demo’s of Silverlight implementations. I was cool though! He showed some apps with XAML only, in XamlPad. Personally I took notes about ScaleTransform and Xml Data Binder which I have to look more into.
This was cool. Andy Hunt, Matt Gibbs, Kevlin Henney and Dan North where discussing accidental complexity. You could ask them questions by writing it on a note and pass it to one of the “conference helpers”. I got my question debated :)