Monthly Archives: October 2007

MSSU Follow Up

On Thursday, October 25th, I spoke to the CIS club at Missouri Southern State University. The presentation won’t win any awards (no presentation of mine ever will.) I put the Powerpoint up on SlideShare. I promised the students and professors in attendance that I would follow up with a post on my blog with links and other info that might be helpful.

Internships
If you’re interested in an internship with Gestalt’s Joplin office, please send your resume to my email address: jhoover at gestalt-llc.com. I’ll make sure your resume gets to the right people within Gestalt.

Pragmatic Unit Testing in C# with NUnit on Amazon.com

Agile Software Engineering
Some of the agile software engineering best practices I mentioned during the presentation were Test Driven Development (TDD) and Continuous Integration (CI). Since MSSU is focused on .NET, here are some links that might be helpful related to TDD and CI:

YouTube Videos
Coco had asked how Gestalt was using YouTube. I mentioned that we used it as part of a recruiting effort. We had a contest open to the employees to see who could make the coolest recruiting video on YouTube. The results of that contest can be found here. The winner (as voted on by Gestalt employees) was John Moffet’s PatrolNet Woes. In an act of shameless self-promotion, I’m embedding my video below.

YouTube Preview Image

  

My Job Went To IndiaRecommended Read
A book I’m in the process of reading that I think would be extremely beneficial for college students to read is My Job Went To India. I’m about a third of the way through and the advice is practical and especially relevant for those entering the IT workforce these days.

RSS
RSS LogoThere were some questions about RSS during the presentation. May I suggest checking out the Gestalt Blogs RSS feed? This feed has all the posts from Gestalt bloggers, with quite a few being out of the Joplin office. My personal favorite combo for subscribing to and reading RSS feeds is Firefox and Google Reader.

Open Source
Below are the links to all our current Open Source projects:

Producing Open Source SoftwareRemember to look into joining an Open Source project. While I don’t have any specific recommendations on projects to join (other than our own!), I can definitely recommend reading the book Producing Open Source Software. You can get a free PDF and HTML version of the book.

Mercy! (i.e. WordPress Upgrade)

WordPress LogoTonight I decided to upgrade this blog to the latest and greatest version of WordPress. I originally went down the path of following the upgrade instructions when I realized that it was kind of crazy to do so when there is the option of using Subversion. The problem with the traditional upgrade is that it requires you to manually copy a lot of files over from the old install like any of your plugins, themes, uploads, etc. By using the Subversion option I can now update to the latest stable version of WordPress by running a single svn command. I like that a lot better.

This entry was published on October 15, 2007 under the following topics Misc

Be Great or Quit Now

I spent the day today with my fellow Gestalt Scrum Masters meeting about what we want to accomplish as a team within the company. It was a productive meeting overall. There were quite a few good discussions that have led to some meaningful action items. I’m looking forward to the weeks ahead.

The Dip on Amazon.comWhen discussing our vision for the Scrum Master team within Gestalt I went on a (slight) rant. I couldn’t help it. I read Seth Godin’s book, The Dip, while on the plane last night and one idea hasn’t left me: Be great, don’t settle for anything less. Don’t waste your professional life in pursuit of anything less than greatness. You can be mediocre anywhere, anytime. Quit when you’re headed for a dead-end. Quit when you’re headed for a cliff. Only pursue those opportunities that provide the opportunity for greatness.

Greatness at Gestalt is no small feat. We’re providing software and consulting services to the Department of Defense. The DOD can no longer afford the status quo of paying big bucks to big companies that take many years to deliver mounds of paper and little of value. The DOD’s “competition” these days doesn’t thrive on big budgets, big monolithic organizations or deadlines in the far off future. The DOD’s “competition” thrives on constraints, is massively distributed and constantly seeking payoffs sooner rather than later. Greatness at Gestalt is delivering the right technology solutions quickly and in an open, non-proprietary manner so that the DOD can succeed in an ever changing environment.

Number One ButtonScrum Master’s play a big role in helping Gestalt as a whole reach greatness. It’s not because we are more important or talented than anyone else within the company. The role we play within Gestalt is one of leadership on a variety of levels; serving as change agents that touch many different areas within the company. We are only a piece to the puzzle called greatness, but if we don’t do our jobs well then there are many others that suffer as a result and the puzzle is incomplete. Not being great as Scrum Masters at Gestalt is not an option. As Seth Godin says on page 57 of The Dip: If you’re not going to get to #1, you might as well quit now.

This entry was published on October 2, 2007 under the following topics Agile, Biz