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Hugh Sheehy

It’s true, it’s completely true.

My recent articles on The Agile Manifesto have resulted in some interesting side discussions. These are a few common reactions:

  1. One, typically from older more experienced people is “Thank you for saying it! I thought I was going mad!”, or something like that. People who’ve been in technology of one sort or another for a long time have seen multiple trends come and go and try to think past the fad. A bit like me.
  2. Another, from a subset of Agile devotees, is something along the lines of “You can’t SAY that! Agile is great. You clearly don’t understand ‘The…


The final part of a little discussion of “Agile”. And whether “Agile” even means anything. Again, settle down with a cup of coffee.

This article could also be titled with any of the following….

“Why being agile is good, and has very little to do with the Agile Manifesto”

“Why ‘Agile’ and agile are two different things”

“Why ‘Agile’ is just the name of a management fad, whereas being agile is useful and important”

But, since there’s also a Part 1 and a Part 2, I stayed with the ‘bollocks’ naming.

Agility….you know it when you see it. Image from Flikr. Some rights reserved.

First, let’s get a couple of things to get…


This is long and chatty. Get comfortable with a cup of coffee.
(I’ll shorten it eventually, after I’ve read it a dozen times)

As I mentioned in Part 1, and will reiterate in Part 3, the “Agile Manifesto” has become a sort of bible for modern software development. Yet there’s nothing actually of very much use in the “Agile Manifesto”. People think there’s lots of deep thinking behind “Agile”, but there really isn’t. The manifesto was apparently the result of a (boozy?) weekend in Utah with a whiteboard.

Most of it is pretty vapid stuff.

Agile. By Dilbert.

Again, I am not arguing…


“Agile” has become received wisdom. It’s THE standard way of building software products. “Agile” is more gospel than the Gospels.

But why? Is there anything to it, really? The Agile Manifesto was , after all, the result of a (boozy?) weekend away in Utah.

Now I’m sorry, but I’ve had lots of wonderful insights on a weekend away that didn’t stand up very well in the cold light of actually getting things done.

Is “Agile” even what you think it is? Is it anything at all? Or is it just horseshit, and not even wrapped up nice?

(see Part 2…


“Digital transformation” is all the rage these days, or it’s supposed to be. Much like — in the past — other transformations were supposed to be the latest greatest thing.

We could make a list. It’d probably include things like these:

  • Total Quality Management
  • ISO 9000
  • Empowering your people
  • Business process reengineering
  • 360 Degree Feedback
  • Six Sigma
  • Stack Ranking
  • Core Competence
  • Open Plan Offices
  • etc…

Now, to be fair, several of these transformations were and remain worthwhile…while others were probably a bad idea at the best of times.

Image from Northwestern University

But, as we get further and further into the 21st century, Digital…


……(in Europe and the UK)

Connector Confusion? Not any more!

Looking at electric cars, many people are nervous about complexity with “all the different connectors”. There was definitely a problem in the beginning, but thanks to some unelected EU bureaucrats the whole situation has simplified quite a bit. Plus, what most people don’t know is that modern cars can charge from empty to full in 30–45 minutes (or less) at a dedicated fast charger. Overnight charging is for home.

The short version

It really is pretty straightforward. The European Union (bless their bureaucratic souls) have brought in standards for all cars sold in the EU.

Basically, every car for sale today has a…


The old Churchill quotes about democracy are still good.

Churchill

(though it’s likely he never actually said the one on the right and besides — it’s a conversation with the average politician that’d really put you off)

In any case, democracy has a long history and is often summarized by having four main elements.

  1. a system for choosing and replacing governments through free and fair elections;
  2. the active participation of the people in politics;
  3. protection of the human rights of the people;
  4. the rule of law, with laws applied equally to all the people.

Or, to use the shorter better description


Why?

Why the industry is in trouble is easily summarized in just a few points.

  1. Neither clients nor candidates are getting good service on a consistent basis. Individual consultants do a great job. The industry doesn’t.
  2. LinkedIn, Indeed.com, Google, or someone else is going to make a broad tech solution that does the job far better. And it’s going to happen soon.

That kinda sums it up.

But — there is more to it than that. Otherwise, since the internet isn’t exactly new, why hasn’t the recruiting industry died already? Why didn’t Monster.com kill recruiting 15 years ago? …


Someone a couple of weeks back asked for recommendations for a translate engine to use in Customer Service.

I looked at this a while ago and came to a boring conclusion.

Use the big guys. In order, I’d suggest;

  1. Google
  2. Microsoft
  3. Amazon

And based on the fact that Amazon is using Google Translate to translate the online conference I’m on today, I’d suggest Google.

Why?

Well, first, why those 3? There are others, but those 3 will always be the best or close. And they’re all the same price. And the integration is near trivial for all of them. And…

Hugh Sheehy

Experienced international business leader. Xoogler. Renaissance man. Optimist with skeptical and ironic tendencies.

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