The Overview Effect (in Software)

The Overview Effect is a cognitive shift that is reported by astronauts when they see the earth from outer space for the first time. It is a change brought on by experiencing the world differently. Strongly held beliefs unfold. A new a mental state is acquired from seeing the whole, after a life spent livingContinue reading “The Overview Effect (in Software)”

Notes on a Learning Organization

Building software products means coping with complexity. Our products are highly interconnected systems of systems. Dynamics are difficult to model; outcomes can be difficult to predict. Ivory towers crumble on this unstable ground. It is not sufficient to have one person deciding for the whole group, everyone following the direction of a “grand strategist”. Decision-makingContinue reading “Notes on a Learning Organization”

Don’t Mix the Paint! Primitives and Composites in the World of Software

This Article was Originally Published in InfoQ on August 16th What color do you think of when you hear the word “red”? Ask 100 people, they will give you 100 different answers. Even with an anchor to help—a can of Coke, perhaps—there will be differences. So begins The Interaction of Color by Josef Albers, whereContinue reading “Don’t Mix the Paint! Primitives and Composites in the World of Software”

Collaboration Calculus

Two of my favourite books show us the yin and yang of success – the individual and the team. Dan Pink’s Drive describes three key areas of motivation and personal growth: Autonomy: The desire to be self-directed Mastery: The urge to get better skills Purpose: The need to work with meaning Meanwhile, in David Marquet’s Turn the ShipContinue reading “Collaboration Calculus”