One of the most well-known aspects of many Agile frameworks is the iterative nature of the delivery of working software. The Agile manifesto states: "Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter timescale." The key phrase here that many teams seem to struggle with is "with a preference to the shorter timescale". The Scrum guide states that sprints can be from 2-4 weeks. This is a little bit better, but many teams still gravitate towards the longer end of that range and end up attempting 3-4 week sprints (Although I am using sprints as recognized in Scrum for most this article, I believe the content and practices that follow can apply to any Agile framework).
1. Not focusing on Culture
Adopting Agile at an organizational level is something that will take a long time, bring about change throughout every level of the organization, face many difficulties, and require a great deal of experimentation and learning. In order for all of these to be possible it is not enough for an organization to simply adopt the practices of one of the many Agile frameworks that are currently available. This will lead to (maybe) some short term successes and some initial enthusiasm, but it will not setup the organization to sustain their Agile adoption over the long term. In order to really get a transformation to stick, the entire organization must experience a cultural shift that will encourage, support, and enable a focus on learning, failing, inspection, adaption, and continuous improvement. With the right culture in place, it will not matter what frameworks or practices the organization tries to adopt because they will be comfortable with trying many different things, continuing to focus on improving, and sustaining improvements over the long term.
After many years, my dream of having my primary work computer be a Macbook finally came true! I was so happy when I received my new 13 inch - Retina Macbook Pro and started to set up my desk with my new charger, keyboard, and mouse. Suddenly I realized there was at least one convenience I hadn't thought about when making the switch from the PC world: a dock that I could easily attach my machine to that would neatly organize all of my cables and provide all the ports I needed. I had never really seen any other Mac users in my office with a dock for their machines, but after a quick search on google I saw that there were at least two options with the more well known being the Henge Docks option. I was a little skeptical of a vertical dock at first since all of the other docks I had used previously were horizontal and the Henge Docks horizontal dock was super expensive. Ultimately, I decided to take the plunge on the vertical dock and see if it would be as useful as using the docks I had grown used to on the PC. Below I have included the pros and cons that I noticed while using the dock.
Scrum and Kanban are currently two of the most popular ways to implement Agile practices within software development teams. Scrum has prescribed roles and ceremonies and focuses on delivering small batches of potentially releasable work in short time-boxes. Kanban focuses on visualizing work, flow, and limiting work in progress. Both place an emphasis on continuous improvement. Both have been shown to be effective, but the question many teams face when starting to adopt Agile is: which one should we use? Teams often get hung up on deciding and in many cases select a framework which may not suit their team or environment. Or even worse, they will switch when the framework they chose isn’t working as well as they had hoped, without giving any thought to the underlying cause of their problems. Taking the following factors into consideration when deciding which one will be best for a particular team will help to ensure that the team is set up for success.
I absolutely love the iDOO V4.1 Bluetooth Headset! When I travel I currently use a pair of Wireless Beats Solo 2, but those can be bulky and honestly there's always a fear that such an expensive set of headphones can be lost, damaged, or stolen. So for my everyday movement I always carry a pair of the iDOO headsets. During my search for an affordable pair of bluetooth headphones (especially after I got an iPhone 7, RIP headphone jack), I tried many many pairs of headphones under $30. There were a few options that were ok, but there were always too many trade-offs to really be able to ditch my Beats or wired headphones completely. Finally after weeks of searching I found these Powerbeats- imitating headphones on Amazon that seemed to really hit the sweet spot on price, performance, and look. Read on to see why I loved these headphones and ended up buying a pair for all my family members this past holiday season.
As many of my reviews will show, I am a huge fan of Incase products. I have been buying their backpacks and accessories for a long time and I always love their designs and build quality. When I saw they were now offering a dopp kit I could use to pair with a bag such as their EO Travel Backpack I was super excited to check it out. Read on to see some of my thoughts below.
Since the original Amazon Echo was announced, I have been so curious to see what all the hype with Alexa is about, but I was very hesitant to invest $180 dollars on what seemed like a pretty limited device. Amazon answered my prayers when they released the Echo Dot at a $50 price point, and although it was sold out for a bit, I was finally able to order mine and start to see what everyone has been talking about. Below I outline what I thought were the main pros and cons of the Echo Dot, but overall I was really impressed with how well Amazon has been able to execute on this vision and create a product that makes you feel like you are in the future.
I have been rocking an Incase Campus Pack for a few years now and I have absolutely loved using the bag everyday. It is still alive and well, but it is starting to look a little worn so I decided to start looking for my next everyday bag. the Incase Reform Action Camera Bag immediately caught my eye due to its size and the amount of different pockets/organizational options that it seemed to offer so I decided to try it out. Below I have included some of the pros and cons that I noticed as I was testing the bag out.
I have recently been shopping around for a duffel bag that can double as a backpack for some of my longer trips where I want to pack everything into one bag. I had recently been using an eBags Weekender backpack, but I felt that a duffel bag offered a little more space and packing flexibility. I have always loved Incase bags so I was very excited to try their new line of Tracto bags (I went with the Small-40L version of the Tracto Split) and I have to say I was very impressed. Below I have included some of the pros and cons that I noticed as I was testing the bag out.
Standing desks are becoming more and more common across offices around the world, but there are still so many people who are curious, but still a little scared to take the jump and just give it a try. As somone who has been working on a standing desk for a while (and who absolutely loves it) I thought I'd put together a quick list of pros and cons so that if someone is curious about trying it and would like to know more, they have a general idea of what they can expect.