Are We a Software Company?

November 30, 2008 by · Comment
Filed under: Leadership, Project management 

Particularly for small, startup organizations, it is important to come to grips with who you really are. From my perspective, too many startups see themselves as software companies, or end up accidentally becoming software companies, and this can get them into serious trouble. Read more

Trust Retention

November 16, 2008 by · Comment
Filed under: People, Teamwork 

When I let one of my kids know they’ve got 10 minutes before we need to be out the door for one of their activities, it’s a safe bet that the response I will get is an “OK Dad.” Unfortunately, it is also a pretty safe bet that we’ll be getting out the door more than a few minutes late. It’s a dance we have fallen into that happens all too often with technical teams as well. I can’t trust them to be good to their word, and I have fallen into the trap of just letting that happen. Read more

Local Maximum

November 9, 2008 by · Comment
Filed under: People, Project management, Teamwork 

Recall back to your college days, there was likely a time when you needed to calculate the maximum value for a given 3-dimensional function. There are a number of algorithms available, but many fall into the trap of only finding a local peak, rather than the absolute maximum. I’m sure that most of you asked yourselves whether you would ever use this in the real world. I’m sure I did, even the second time I took that infernal course. It turns out that the problem of reaching local maxima seems to occur in a team environment all the time, where it is not as rigorously understood that it is even a problem. While there is far less math involved, the solution can end up being just as difficult to implement. Read more

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