I was happily running a class when someone asked about how performance agreements work if you are on projects. “Really well” I replied, “you just need a new one for each project you are on. ” My answer didn’t seem to go down well though. After all, who wants yet another piece of administration to…
 We used the  “Abstract to concrete” approach to splitting stories in a training course recently. The approach is published in our “resources” page, alongside some other approaches that also work. But I told the class I would publish it here for easy reference, so here it is. It's a simple approach…
We are absolutely delighted to announce that Paul Reid is joining the Software Education board. Paul is currently the Group Manager, Technology and Innovation at NZ Post, as well as a director of Maven. Prior to this he was CEO of the NZ Meteorological Service and prior to that he held a senior…
Today I gave a talk at the  Government Test Professionals Forum conference in Wellington. I presented a case study about how the Farm Systems Division of Livestock Improvement Corporation have adopted Agile methods. I told the story of Team Awesome (they choose the name themselves), how their…
I was at an Agile Academy Meetup last night and the topic was “The Agile Journey and beyond”. It was great to hear about the Agile concepts and practices being applied, in real-world scenarios – small and large organisations. But it was equally great to hear about how these organisations were using…
I’ve been teaching a lot of Agile courses lately, and a very common point of discussion is the way the Daily Stand-up meeting is often abused and misused. Words like “micromanagement” are often used. The primary purpose of the daily stand-up is for the team members to communicate with each other…
I finally attended this yearly global and prestigious RE’10 event where academics and industry got together to listen and exchange ideas. Much to my surprise, there was a large disconnect between academia’s ideas of requirements engineering with much talk about automation that requires careful…
I have done a lot of data conversion projects and a lot of building reports on financial information.  But when participants in my courses ask about data warehouses my advice is a little more limited. I usually tell people that data warehouses sound like a good idea and that every company should…
This morning I received an email that asked how a team will know their stories are good enough? This question is one that frequently comes up in classes, and the right answer (of course) is “it depends”, which probably doesn’t help you much. So – what does it depend on?  Here are my thoughts … .
Anyone who has attended a Software Education course will be familiar with the most common answer we give to questions: ”it depends”. (We do then try to provide a context for what it depends on). We are strong supporters of the context-driven approach to all aspects of software engineering – there…
Previous readers of this blog will have noticed the intellectual firepower and sheer passion of the contributors who share their views on testing. They will also have noticed the blatant and shameful lack of authority with which one contributor (me) replies to questions and issues around…
In the google group Software Testers New Zealand, a discussion thread was posted about testers favourite testing books. One of the main books mentioned in Lessons learned in software testing. Cynthia, a tester based in Auckland New Zealand wrote this great experience report using the book Lesson…


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