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Showing posts from December, 2011

Focus on the Customer

What does it take to have a first rate customer experience when there are more customers than sales representatives?  Yes, this means there is going to be some form of wait, a queue.  Here is my comparison of experience at the Apple Store to that of the restaurant, CheeseCake Factory which we went to right afterwards.

At the Apple store we were put on a wait list to see a representative (the greeter used a text description and my wife's name to put her on the list explaining that the next available person would find us, as we browsed).  I asked what the description was, and this is how my wife was described: "tall, with long hair, in a jean jacket with multi-colored scarf".  I suggested that they had the technology to just snap a picture and attached it.  She said there might be privacy concerns with that.


We browsed and found the item we needed (a Mini Display Port - HDMI adapter).  About the time we had found it an Apple person (wearing a red shirt for the holidays) wa…

Visualize Your Problem Domain

Do you innovate new ways to visualize your problem domain?

The health care field is constantly using technology to visualize their problem domain.  They teach with color coded pictures, pink muscles, red arteries, blue veins, yellow nerves, etc. Yet the actual patient doesn't arrive on the surgens table with this color coding - YET.  They can do quite miraculous tricks with imaging (x-Ray, CT Scans, MRI, etc) and some imaging techniques are in real time.  Here is a video of the latest technique I've seen.  To visualize the problem.



I love the history and context Ms Nguyen gives us in this video.  The reason for surgery theaters to be where their were in old buildings.  Now with electric lights they can be in the basements, many times they are because of the heavy equipment they contain.

Apply this to the domain of software development.  Yes, we also use color coding to visualize the field, we have IDEs that give unique color to constants for example.  Yet we can not yet tag a …

Yes - You Need a Full Time Scrum Master

Many organizations adopting Scrum ask these questions.
Do we need a full time Scrum master for each team?Why do we need a full time Scrum master, can't they do other roles also?
Now allow me to give you the answers:  Yes, you need a full time Scrum Master.Why - watch the video.Let me explain:
Yes, you need a full time Scrum master, because they will be constantly watching for the actions of the team.  Making sure that the team member are working in flow as often as possible.  This is a full time job.
Why can the scrum master not do other roles on the team? Because of the human ability of selective attention.  First let me show you a video - a little test of your superior ability to follow instructions.  Perhaps you've seen this video - if so, just play along, maybe you will be surprised at how well you do on the test.

The Monkey Business Illusion
Now do you understand why we need a Scrum master watchhttp://www.infoq.com/articles/case-dedicated-scrum-mastering out for impediments …

Is Time-to-Market really a Key Differentiator?

Why do some product win in the market place and some lose?  Is being first to market the key distinction between winning and losing?

The Agile software development movement has this one aspect (time-to-market) as key differentiator.  Many surveys note this aspect as a reason to adopt Agile methods.  Business people resonate with this value proposition.  The Lean Startup movement has this within its core.  It appears just common sense.  But is it good practice - is it a true cause and effect relationship?  If one is first in the market place with a new product, will it capture market share and become the de-facto standard product in the market segment?

Take the case of the cookie - the Oreo Cookie (introduced in 1912) - have you heard the back story?  It was the perhaps a knock-off of the Hydrox cookie (introduced in 1908), the first in the market segment, yet always labeled "imitator" and never a strong competitor (Oreos to Hydrox: Resistance is Futile).

It certainly did no…

Info-radiator; Better than Google Analytics

What is better than Google Analytics (web analytics made smarter, friendlier and free)?  How about web analytics made into an INFO-RADIATOR?

What is an info-radiator?
“An Information radiator is a display posted in a place where people can see it as they work or walk by. It shows readers information they care about without having to ask anyone a question. This means more communication with fewer interruptions."
  -- Alistair CockburnSee also:  Big Visible Chart, Informative Workspaces, Information Radiators.

This concept is a mash-up of publishing information with information graphics and personal interactive engagement.


So here is my latest attempt to create one of these mash-ups.  It is an attempt to disseminate information about some Scrum videos and a survey on basic training evaluation (did the learner like and value the training).  One problem with this poster is that it may spark interest in the topic - yet there was a poor actionable behavior associated this reading the pos…