When no one knows what they’re doing, scrum helps

So let’s say you have a dev team that’s experienced, but not with the technology they’re working in for a big project, and not with a web site build of the scale that the project demands.

And let’s say the client team is similarly inexperienced – they’ve got a great writer and communicator, and someone who knows the site content and the owners, but no one who has worked on a big web site build before, or who has worked with a CMS before.

Further, let’s say the dev team is somewhat immature in their practices despite their experience, largely because they’ve never worked at this scale before. Automated testing (or any testing), continuous integration, and actually using a development methodology (even waterfall) are not things this team has ever done.

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What if a technical talk was purposefully female-biased?

What if a woman presented on a technical topic at a technical conference, and biased all of her gendered words and images toward women. eg, all personal pronouns were female; images of people in her slide deck were all of women; gendered idioms such as “hey, ladies!” were selected instead of “hey, guys!”

what effect would that have on the audience? the presenter? the perception of the presenter by the audience?

it would be a manipulative exercise and i’d be deeply hesitant to try it myself. i started thinking about it during class today when the instructor was talking about people not feeling free to speak their minds in meetings.  at a technical conference, do women feel more or less comfortable asking questions than men? does the presentation and the presenter make a difference? if uncomfortable initially, would women feel more comfortable at the end of the presentation i’ve described above?

a little poem

she cooks

she cleans

she codes up themes

she cares for the bean

she designs and implements enterprise grade wordpress infrastructures


i feel like that last part needs some work but i can’t seem to summarize it any other way.

A story to tell your daughters.

Once there was a girl who was cut loose from college early, shiftless and aimless and with no great ambitions. Her plan was to become a starving artist.

She fell into a boring desk job at a software company. Her desk was in the hall and she answered the phone, took notes in meetings and sorted the mail. At home after work she would paint and draw and walk to the Char-Grill for milkshakes and fries.

lisa-in-the-hallShe was very curious about the work in her office, even if being in an office seemed boring and restrictive. She became the best at taking meeting notes because she tried to understand what was being discussed, and asked people passing in the hall what the jargon meant, or about basic concepts such as what a microcomputer is, or how a token ring network works.

Continue reading “A story to tell your daughters.”