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If you’re like me and subscribe to or follow sites and people who care about software, it is likely you are regularly barraged with emails, Tweets, LinkedIn Updates, etc. discussing technical debt and attributing many computer related disasters to be a direct result of technical debt.  The notion of technical debt was introduced in 1992 by Ward Cunningham, writing “Shipping first time code is like going into debt.  A little debt speeds up development so long as it is paid back promptly with a rewrite” [1].  The term technical debt is often used as a metaphor to help ease ...
While employed with the federal government as a cost estimator/analyst, I traditionally used a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), more specifically, an 881C template, when doing a cost estimate.  I was introduced to PRICE TruePlanning®, which uses a Product Breakdown Structure (PBS), a few years after I started with the Department of Defense as a Cost Estimator.  Initial confusion and bafflement fell upon me—what is the difference and which breakdown structure should I use?  My search for clarification created an opportunity to address this subject briefly in hopes that it helps others with the same questions and confusion I dealt ...
Last week as I sat in my office gazing out the window, I was struck by the throngs of people outside my window lurching distractedly through the parking lot staring at their phones.  Turns out that the water tower in the back of our office is a Poke Stop – part of the new Pokemon Go craze.  In case you live under a rock, Pokemon Go is the new smart phone game that allows one to wonder around the real (physical) world collecting Pokemon.  The game can be downloaded for free for either the iPhone or Android.  Once you ...
Fast and efficient are good qualities to strive for whether you are creating super-spies, or selecting a format for transferring data. Jason Bourne excelled at what he did largely because he was able to think quickly and react even more quickly. It was fun to watch him get out of situations using his wits that would have left most of us in the fetal position.  Less exciting, but more pertinent to those of us in the fast paced world of software development, is the need to move large amounts of data between two entities. It could be a RESTful ...
While there was a time in my life when I was not a huge baseball fan – it was fun for a few innings but once I had my fill of hot dogs, peanuts and soda – I was ready to go home.  This changed the day my husband informed me that it was time to sign our four year old up for T-ball.  At least the transformation started that day.  As a mother of two up and coming little leaguers, I spent a lot of time watching baseball games.  And rather than be one of those mothers that ...
Here’s a great article about technical debt - “How Technical Debt Threatens Your Brain Capital”.  The author focuses not on the principle and interest of the technical debt, but rather the impact that technical debt has on the development team.  The author’s thesis is that one of the not-so-often talked about side effects of unaddressed and lingering technical debt is how its existence begins to chip away at the morale of your team.  If the product owners and the business are constantly choosing short cuts to get features to market without committing enough time to refactor these short-cuts, they are creating ...