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  • Blog Post: CAST Away

    Last week found me braving the Grand Rapids, Michigan summer (heat! humidity! sun! loved it!) to attend my first CAST. While I propped it a couple years ago , I didn't actually make it until now. The short version: CAST is awesome, conference proceedings will soon be up at http://www.cast2010.org...
  • Blog Post: Book Review: Mistress of Molecules

    Last fall Jerry Weinberg sent me a review copy of his scifi novel Mistress of Molecules . I pretty much read it straight through, and then didn't blog for six months so never posted my review. So here goes: I enjoyed it! Although I guessed the major plot points and some of the details well ahead of...
  • Blog Post: My Very Busy CPU

    Hmmm...I start a build and all eight of my cores gets busy - what's up with that? <g/>
  • Blog Post: Snow In Seattle On April Fool's!

    It is snowing here in Seattle today, 1 April 2009. Mum Nature evidently has a sense of humor!
  • Blog Post: So You Want To Work For Microsoft...

    Several people have emailed me recently asking for tips on getting through their upcoming interviews at Microsoft. My advice: Be Yourself . I believe this is the most important tip I can give you. I find that how someone fits (or does not fit) with my team is much more important than what they profess...
  • Blog Post: CASTing For Participants, Part 2

    Some months ago I posted about CAST 2008, how it's not your typical conference, how gobs of Smart Testers will be attending, and how you probably should attend too. The program is up now, and it's a doozy! Jerry Weinberg is presenting the opening keynote and also an all-day tutorial on communication...
  • Blog Post: It's A Live (Mesh)!

    A year ago I joined a team building a top secret project. Today we threw off our invisibility cloak and revealed ourselves as as Live Mesh . Come on over and browse around. Subscribe to our team blog , where I'll be posting from time to time. Then come back here, for two important reasons: We are...
  • Blog Post: I Don't Think That's Exactly What They Meant, Exactly

    A hotel I was in recently had a toilet: I found that sign over the toilet rather interesting: Um, I can think of at least two other things which are going into their septic system!
  • Blog Post: AYE - Amenities

    The conference hotel was one of those every-room-is-a-suite places. I found having an extra room helpful even though I wasn't in my room much. The hotel food was standard hotel food which I didn't bother eating. (A healthier menu with organic ingredients next year please!) Fortunately an organic grocery...
  • Blog Post: AYE - Friday

    Friday I recuperated from the week of brain stuffing, intellectual and emotional stimulation, and long days by motoring up to Sedona, where I processed my week (and wrote this) with the assistance of an energy vortex or four.
  • Blog Post: AYE - Thursday

    Thursday was SHAPE Day, a gathering of those conference attendees who are also members of Jerry Weinberg's SHAPE Forum . We started out about twenty, which number dwindled throughout the day as people left for the airport. This was effectively a live, in-person version of the Forum, replete with much...
  • Blog Post: AYE - Wednesday

    Wednesday morning I took part in a writing workshop by Johanna Rothman and Naomi Karten , each authors of multiple books and copious articles. I picked up numerous tips, such as to ask reviewers for specific types of feedback rather than simply requested comments, and to replace verb+adverb combinations...
  • Blog Post: AYE - Tuesday

    Tuesday morning I took Naomi Karten 's Building Connections That Amplify Your Effectiveness. I thought it would be about networking. Nope. (I don't know why I thought that since the class description didn't mention that topic.) It turned out to be informative nevertheless. We did a variety of communication...
  • Blog Post: AYE - Monday

    Monday morning I attended Steve Smith 's workshop on Virgina Satir's Change Model. The short form of this model (see his popular article for the full skinny) is: Status Quo. Everything is stable and going well. A Foreign Element pops up. The person/group Resists the foreign element's efforts...
  • Blog Post: AYE - Sunday

    Sunday was a warm-up tutorial by Don Gray and Steve Smith . This was an all-day session meant to introduce newbies like me (and returnees looking for a refresher) to the lingo, vocabulary, and concepts used at the conference. First up was the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), which is perhaps the...
  • Blog Post: AYE? Aye!

    I spent the previous two weeks in sunny Arizona. Last week I hiked around Sedona. The week before that I was in Phoenix attending the Amplify Your Effectiveness (AYE) conference. AYE is not your typical sit-in-dark-hotel-rooms-listening-to-droning-speakers-read-their-slides. Although the sessions were...
  • Blog Post: Driver Wanted

    I was walking along, minding my own business, when a sign in a shop window reached out and grabbed my attention: Driver wanted. Must have valid WSDL. Say what? Applicants must have their own Web Services Definition Language file? I can see how it could be useful for a delivery person to be addressable...
  • Blog Post: Brain Overload

    Tell me, please, when exactly it is OK to park here? This is perhaps the most complicated set of parking rules I have seen. I am glad that a) I do not have a car, and b) I do not live anywhere near these street signs!
  • Blog Post: Systin Testing

    Jerrad is cooking up Systin , which he's building on top of Systir . All terribly exciting, but wait there's more: he's going to implement something similar to my team's automation stack on top of it all! Hmmm...Ruby. Making it easier and faster to write test cases from the customer's point of view...
  • Blog Post: Ideaful Idealists

    The last of Keirsey's Four Temperaments is the Idealist. Recall that Idealists - or NFs - tend to be abstract in their thinking and communication and cooperative in their use of tools. As a result, they tend to excel at diplomacy. The Idealist bucket contains a smaller bucket for each of the four...
  • Blog Post: Guardians At The Gate

    Today's Temperament is the Guardian. Recall that Guardians - or SJs - tend to be concrete in their thinking and communication and cooperative in their use of tools. As a result, they tend to excel at logistics. The Guardian bucket contains a smaller bucket for each of the four MBTI SJ variants: ...
  • Blog Post: Artful Artisans

    Today I'll cover the Artisan Temperament . Recall that Artisans - or SPs - tend to be concrete in their thinking and communication and utilitiarian in their use of tools. As a result, they tend to excel at tactics. The Artisan bucket contains a smaller bucket for each of the four MBTI SP variants...
  • Blog Post: Irrational Rationals

    Continuing on with Keirsey's Four Temperaments , I'll do one post each going into the details of each temperament. I'll start with the Rationals, just because that's what I am (barely). Recall that Rationalists - or NTs - tend to be abstract in their thinking and communication and utilitiarian in...
  • Blog Post: Temper Temper Temperament

    As I've talked about before , one of my current areas of study is personality types. In particular, of late I've been reading up on the Myers-Brigg Type Indicator and Keirsey Temperament Sorter. Isabel Myers herself noticed large similarities between sets of the sixteen MBTI types: the iNtuitive Feelers...
  • Blog Post: Semantic Dream Analysis

    They say that when you start thinking and dreaming in that foreign language you are trying to learn you are finally starting to internalize all that book learning with which you've been stuffing your brain. I wonder if that carries over to other skills... This weekend I had a dream about a bug in...
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