How do you get to Kernighan (and Richie) Hall?

I recently decided I want to get better at playing the piano. 30+ years ago, I had some lessons playing the electronic organ, but though I’ve played a few things since on a piano I’ve never taken it seriously enough to do some deliberate practice. That means I’ve played a few songs from sheet music, … Continue reading How do you get to Kernighan (and Richie) Hall?

The Blindfolded Ninja Model of Software Development

The ancient and respected team of Science Ninja is amazing. For centuries (or so it seems) they’ve protected the temple of Llabdum. The temple is old, with many places showing signs of previous attacks, or simply crumbling rock and weapons still in the skeletal hands of fallen enemies. Or maybe, you know, just lego bricks … Continue reading The Blindfolded Ninja Model of Software Development

Top Gear: A New Refactoring Kata

For the last five or six years, I've been using coding exercises during job interviews. After talking a little with a candidate I open my laptop, call up an editor, and we sit together to do some coding. My favourite exercise for this is a refactoring kata that I came up with. I've always found … Continue reading Top Gear: A New Refactoring Kata

Don’t Refactor. Rebuild. Kinda.

I recently had the chance to speak at the wonderful Lean Agile Scotland conference. The conference had a very wide range of subjects being discussed on an amazingly high level: complexity theory, lean thinking, agile methods, and even technical practices! I followed a great presentation by Steve Smith on how the popularity of feature branching … Continue reading Don’t Refactor. Rebuild. Kinda.

Agile 2015 Talk: Don’t Refactor. Rebuild. Kinda.

Monday, August 3, I had the opportunity to give a talk at the Agile Alliance's Agile 2015 conference in Washington, D.C. My first conference in the US, and it was absolutely fantastic to be able to meet so many people I'd only interacted with on mailing lists and twitter. It was also a huge conference, … Continue reading Agile 2015 Talk: Don’t Refactor. Rebuild. Kinda.

XP2015 Workshop: Continuous Delivery using Docker and Jenkins Job Builder

Introduction On 25 May, I had the opportunity to give a workshop at the XP 2015 conference in Helsinki on using Jenkins Job Builder to set-up a delivery pipeline to build and deploy Docker images. The full source for the workshop can be found on my github account: https://github.com/wouterla/. This post takes you through the … Continue reading XP2015 Workshop: Continuous Delivery using Docker and Jenkins Job Builder

Outside in, whatever’s at the core

I haven't written anything on here for quite a while. I haven't been sitting still, though. I've gone independent (yes, I'm for hire!) and been working with a few clients, generally having a lot of fun. I was also lucky enough to be able to function as Chet's assistent (he doesn't need one, which was … Continue reading Outside in, whatever’s at the core

DevOps and Continuous Delivery

If you want to go fast and have high quality, communication has to be instant, and you need to automate everything. Structure the organisation to make this possible, learn to use the tools to do the automation. There's a lot going on about DevOps and Continuous Delivery. Great buzzwords, and actually great concepts. But not … Continue reading DevOps and Continuous Delivery

Conway’s Organizational Structure Heuristic

organizations which design systems ... are constrained to produce designs which are copies of the communication structures of these organizations. -- Melvin Conway We often run into examples of Conway's Law in organizations where silo-ed departments prompt architectural choices that are not supportive of good software design. The multi-functional nature of Agile teams is one way to … Continue reading Conway’s Organizational Structure Heuristic

Unit Testing JavaScript with QUnit and Mockjax

I've been experimenting a bit with JavaScript. My lack of real knowledge of the language, apart from some simple DOM-manipulations, is starting to become embarrassing! So a couple of months ago I decided I should pick up the JS axe, and do some chopping. And the first step to guiding yourself into any new programming … Continue reading Unit Testing JavaScript with QUnit and Mockjax