Zen and the Art of Working with Internal Teams

Zen and the Art of Working with Internal Teams

I’ve had the pleasure of working with many internal development teams in my career in software development. For our company, working in partnership with internal development teams is, in fact, a common project type. Clients call on our particular services for any number of reasons but the most common are to a) increase development traction or b) supplement core internal skills with outside development expertise.

We’ve worked with internal teams comprised of a single developer as well as internal development teams for vast, multinational tech companies with internal departments that dwarf our entire company. (more…)

Digital Disruption and the Menswear Renaissance

Digital Disruption and the Menswear Renaissance

Disruption has been the buzzword in tech for the last half a decade or so, and I thought it might be interesting to detail how disruption has personally changed my life as it simultaneously changed the fashion industry.

First, let’s define a few terms:

    1. Ready to wear (RTW) – These are clothes sold “off the rack” in standardized sizes. You can have these clothes altered to fit you more precisely, but all clothes in one size are made to the same standard from the same pattern. You can go to Dillards and be wearing the suit you purchase within a week (assuming you have it altered). The price range is generally somewhere between $300 and $1,500, excluding outliers.

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Music and AI (Artificial Intelligence)

Music and AI (Artificial Intelligence)

Prior to the release of The Jazz Singer in 1927, live musicians accompanied motion pictures in movie theaters. After the integration of synchronized sound, live musicians were no longer necessary. Protesting this technological advancement that took away their jobs, the Music Defense League spent $500,000 (quite a sum of money in the 1930s!) on an ad campaign featuring a maniacal robot. (more…)

Maintaining Your Application — It’s Like Owning A Cat

Maintaining Your Application — It’s Like Owning A Cat

I may live to regret this analogy.

But let’s consider this a PSA for the purpose of maintaining your software application . . . perhaps co-sponsored by your local ASPCA or Animal Rescue.

I frequently find that clients think of their applications like a very heavy piece of furniture — one of those uber-plushy, leather recliners. You buy it, you stick it in the corner, and, there it sits, comfy and dependable, aging gracefully in place for years until a spouse puts a foot down and insists that it be updated for a newer model. The chair is dragged to the corner or sold at a yard sale or hauled to the transfer station. (more…)

iOS 11: The Culling

iOS 11: The Culling

Amid the OS updates rolled out last week, one of the iOS updates may have passed by the casual observer or novice application developer with little notice.

iOS 11 no longer supports 32-bit applications. Technically, there’s no reason to not support 32-bit applications. There’s no real magic in 64-bit applications. But since Apple has been pushing for 64-bit applications for about 3 years and any developer seasoned in iOS development has adopted this standard for any new applications and updated any maintained applications, this is effectively Apple’s way of culling from the glutted AppStore all the abandoned and crusty applications in one fell swoop. Once someone updates their iOS device to iOS 11, your application, if it’s not 64-bit, simply will cease to work. (more…)

Long in the Tooth: What to Do with Aging Software

Long in the Tooth: What to Do with Aging Software

It’s happening more and more lately.

    Me: . . . Okay, so I understand a little bit about your project goals and how they fit in with your business needs. . . Can you tell me, if you know, what technologies your current application was built with?

    Client: Um. . . I’ve heard some of the folks say “PHP”. . . does that make sense?

    Me: Sure does. Any idea what version of PHP and which framework it might be leveraging?

    Client: Oooh, I don’t know. . . I can get that for you though. . .

    Me: That’s okay. How about this: How old is the application and when is the last time you did an update?

    Client: Well, we developed it in 2007 and we had a person who worked on it for just a couple years after that but they aren’t here anymore. . .

Software development has moved through several “ages” as both technical innovation and the cultural evolution driven by those technical innovations has moved from the early adopters through the late adopters and permeated our expectations of what technology is. (more…)