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Showing posts from 2011

You are NOT Agile if there's no Test Driven Development

Yes YOU. Company, team, manager or programmer.

You tried to tell me your job requires "Proven track record in delivering features in agile environment". You listed in your linked in profile that you have "Extensive experience with Agile projects". You describe your company as "Practising the latest Agile development techniques".


If you're not doing Test Driven Development you're not agile. You're not Scrum. You're not XP. You're not Kanban. You'd be lucky to be classified as LEAN.

Okay so TDD didn't make it into the Manifesto and maybe it should have. But all the ideas that built towards that manifesto included TDD as a key part of how programming should be done. You can argue about being 80% agile or that an agile technique for one company shouldn't be identical to the next. Fine! But you damn well better have TDD front and centre of that plan!

Why is it so important? Because agile development isn't about cha…


"But Zend Framework also provides an advanced Model-View-Controller (MVC) implementation that can be used to establish a basic structure for your Zend Framework applications" - What a load of shit. Models are barely more than wrappers for database tables. Which would be okay except they have no connection to the view. And there's no easy way of having a model render out differently with different views. Zend Framework is shit and I wouldn't recommend it to anyone&lt/rant&gtUpdate: For future reference Zend and most so called MVC web frameworks are actually Model 2. Zend is a pretty poor job of it but at least that puts it into the right category

Everyone will have access to the internet in less than 10 years

I'm making the call now. In 5-10 years everyone who wants access to the internet will have it. Already we're seeing tablets win over people who previously thought computers too complex to use and maintain. Cheap smart-phones are selling like hotcakes across Africa. Investment in mobile networks in the developing world has been very high for over a decade as it struggles to keep up with demand.We've often talked about the internet being a tool for democracy. I'm not sure we ever really believed it until protests started across the arab world. But now that there are seemingly pointless protests across the world following the #occupy tags it seems the world is never going to be quite the same. Now protests (violent or otherwise) can be spawned by a hashtag with very little basis beyond that. Still not sure how I feel about that.

Battles facebook lost

Everyone knows Facebook is the massive presence on the internet and is fighting to get more user interaction on many fronts. Deals with bing and skype are still going strong but there are some battles they have backed off on.
To be fair they still have check-ins but it's now just part of a post. Not a key feature of announcing where you are. But still FourSquare use of gamification, deals and very good location database made this a battle facebook was certainly losing.
Everyone has had a go at the "group by" systems pioneered by groupon. Google and Facebook both trialled getting into it but Facebook has now given up. Will be curious to see if they pick one to partner with or just enjoy all the traffic they bring back into facebook and advertising revenue they hand over.

Emergent gameplay

I was watching some stuff on Tribes: Ascend and was reminded of something I haven't seen in years. Emergent gameplay. Where something completely unplanned by a game developer becomes the norm. Not some exploit which the developers quickly stamp down on but those rare occasions where they step back and encourage it.

The Rocket Jump is the best known of these and emerged in Quake 1. Basically the rocket would create a lot of force throwing the player or enemy away from the blast. But the blast from a single rocket was not lethal. With armour and health boosts it could be reduced to a negligible level. So players found they could make their character jump, shoot a rocket at the ground underneath them, and fly up to a great height. The Quake series has stuck to allowing the rocket jump in all their games since as well as it persisting in Quake mods like Team Fortress which is now a standalone game with its sequel.

Tribes Skiing is the other example of an exploited physics engine. Trib…

It's always a Science even if it seems like it's not!

I'm sure you've heard the expression "It's an Art, not a Science". You may have even used some version of it yourself. I think I hate that statement.

You may have been (or likely will one day) go to the hospital for an operation. And may expect to be put under a "general anaesthetic". But how does it work? You'll take something else to put you to sleep but how does this other drug stop you from feeling pain that would otherwise shock you right out of any deep sleep? They've been used in medicine for 150 years so this should be a simple question right?

"Advances in cell biology, genetics and molecular biology have transformed anesthesiology into an active area of research. Scientists have largely abandoned the idea that anesthetics work by acting on fatty molecules in cell membranes. The bulk of the evidence now supports the idea that the drugs target specific protein molecules embedded in nerve cell membranes and interfere with neurotransmiss…