Channel Hopping Mad!
Why are digital radio and TV such exemplars of a bad user experience? In the good old days of a small number of analogue broadcast channels, watching TV or listening to the radio was a rewardingly simple process. To watch, … Continue reading
Why REST Doesn't Make Life More Rest-full
As I have observed before, IT as a field is highly driven by both fashion and received wisdom, and it can be difficult to challenge the commonly accepted position. In the current world it is barely more politically acceptable to … Continue reading
The Architect's USP
Very early on in any course in marketing or economics you will encounter the concept of the "Unique Selling Proposition", the USP, that factor which differentiates a given product or service from its competitors. It’s "what you have that competitors … Continue reading
Testing vs Modelling, Detection vs Prediction, Hope vs Knowledge
The Challenge I often hear a statement which worries me, especially but not exclusively in agile projects, along the lines of “we’ll make sure it works when we test it later”. Now you may think this is an odd view … Continue reading
Does Agile Miss The Point About Engineering?
A former colleague, Neil Schiller, recently wrote an excellent article, https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/agile-data-programmes-neil-schiller/, on the challenge of using agile approaches in data-centric programmes. In it, he referenced and reviewed a classic cartoon by Henrik Kniberg which is often used to promote the … Continue reading
Architecture Lessons from a Watch Collection
I recently started a watch collection. To be different, to control costs and to honour a style which I have long liked, all my watches are hybrid analogue/digital models. Within that constraint, they vary widely in age, cost, manufacturer and … Continue reading
Integration Or Incantation?
I was travelling recently with Virgin Atlantic. I went to check in online, typed in my booking code and selected both our names, clicked "Next", and got an odd error saying that I couldn’t check in. I wondered momentarily if … Continue reading
How Strong Is Your Programming Language?
I write this with slight trepidation as I don’t want to provoke a "religious" discussion. I would appreciate comments focused on the engineering issues I have highlighted. I’m in the middle of learning some new programming tools and languages, and … Continue reading
Why I (Still) Do Programming
It’s an oddity that although I sell most of my time as a senior software architect, and can also afford to purchase software I need, I still spend a lot of time programming, writing code. Twenty-five years ago people a … Continue reading
The Perfect is the Enemy of the Good
The Perfect is the Enemy of the Good. I’m not sure who first explained this to me, but I’m pretty sure it was my school metalwork teacher, Mr Bickle. Physically and vocally he was a cross between Nigel Green and … Continue reading
Software Design Decoded
This is a delightful little book on the perennial topic of how a software architect should think and behave. While that subject seems to attract shorter books, this one is very concise – the main content is just 66 two-page … Continue reading
Form vs Function - a Tail :) of Three Mice
Just in case you think some of my recent posts have been a bit anti-Microsoft, here’s one in which (spoiler alert!) they win! Call me old-fashioned, but I very much prefer using a mouse to a trackpad or its relatives, … Continue reading