Re: A code
I would argue that Monty Python and the works of Pterry have a similar code.
67 publicly visible posts • joined 12 Mar 2008
You however arguably have the least to worry about. You work on clear projects that can easily be converted from a day rate to a Statement of Work with fixed deliverables and a fee for completion. You write assumptions and conditions into the contract that allow you to adjust the vale of the contract if the client causes any delay to the project outside your control. You build into the SoW interim payment dates so that you're still getting money in the meantime. You also charge separately for expenses.
This is exactly what a "consultancy" would do. You could too.
The issue of course is that clients are wary of issuing contracts like this to small businesses. They'd rather just go to a "real consultancy" with all the additional costs therein.
Well, no it wasn't, was it? I was the tech director of a software firm at the time and therefore had multiple clients using software "designed" by my employer. Because many of them dated back ten years or more, it pains me to admit they'd used short dates in many tables and so date calculations around payment dates, lease lengths, etc. would have failed to work correctly had the dev team done a huge amount of work to change the databases and code.
Come the new year and all was working well although a few former clients who were using the software past their licence expiry dates tried to make a fuss.
Y2K wasn't a disaster because a lot of money was spent ensuring it wouldn't be. Yet these days it's used as an example of unnecessary concern. "Look at what happened with Y2K! Nothing! It'll be just like that with <insert impending disaster of your choice>"
Given the government has no idea how to write a statement of work let alone actually deciding up front what it actually wants, the SI will happily sign any contract knowing that it will then run rings around the government project manager, forcing Change Request after Change Request including early payments etc.
There's a good reason why these big SI like to work with public sector.
Good to know that while certification of software for HP's systems requires "a certain due diligence", in reality it's apparently a couple of hours of filling out a questionnaire.
"Unimpressed, Whitman replied: “With all due respect, this is a tiny issue,” continuing: “When you sell a customer a product, there needs to be a certain certification around that product, a certain due diligence, and this was one of the requirements of a big company. I think this took, maybe, a few hours to fill out this questionnaire. This is a minuscule issue… OK, you get someone to fill out the questionnaire, it takes two hours and you’re good to go.”"
On the contrary. Everyone who was already inclined to believe <insert apparent fact> will believe it. All those who were not inclined, won't.
We live in a world of "alternate facts" where societies are so divided that provenance is assumed so long as it reinforces the watcher's world view. Any that contradict their worldview will be written off as deep fakes.
"Proof" will no longer exist or matter.
An online grocery customer complained at not receiving their order confirmation email; investigations showed that the receiving school email system was rejecting the mail for "profanity". Much scratching of heads finally twigged that the customer had ordered "two chicken breasts".
"I agree - for Brexit here in the UK, the £350million per week not going to the EU, everyone knew it was metaphorical."
Really? Everyone knew?
I think there were huge numbers of people who believed WHAT WAS WRITTEN ON THE FECKING BUS!
I meet large numbers of people who believe only the politicians on "the other side" lie, that everything in their preferred paper is gospel, that life is unfair to them but not to those other bastards who get everything on a plate.
Anyone who thinks the masses are anything other than misinformed bigots is either a misinformed bigot or smoking better drugs than me.
Many years ago (some time in the 90s) WordPerfect produced an alpha version of their suite written in Java. It was componentised so that you got Java functions as you used them downloaded from a server which was Internet connected and auto-updated by WordPerfect as they bug-fixed the alpha software. It was designed for use over a network (remember "The Network Is The Computer"?), to avoid having to download a monolithic .exe file as per Office95 apps at the time.
It actually worked - not brilliantly but then it was only an alpha and would certainly have improved as it moved into beta and release.
Then M$ announced it was going to do the same thing.
So WordPerfect killed the project.
A year later, M$ quietly announced they weren't going to do it after all.
I fscking hate M$. And particularly Office.
What I don't understand is why this even is something Google has to do. Google doesn't create the web pages that list the factual misdemeanours. If the RTBF requestor has a problem with the pages, shouldn't the requestor take it up with the web pages? Once the page is down, Google no longer finds it and the results disappear from the index (although not the Wayback machine).
If the "offending" web page is factually correct and still there, why should Google cease to provide it as a result?
Or does the RTBF also apply to physical court records etc.?
3 active with each one capable of handling the entire load, then when one is down for maintenance a failure still leaves one working.
I worked in a refinery once where there were three pumps for the main cat cracker. When I asked for the rationale (as a naive IT bod) I was told that if all three went off in an uncontrolled manner, the resulting explosion would destroy my server room even though it was 3 km away!
DevOps should not be an excuse to be cowboys. Agile has the concept of the architectural runway where the architecture is rolled out just in time for the solution to work. I have always found it ironic that something "just in time" would try to use an analogy where there is so much health and safety that "just in time" is years in advance!
Anyways, this promises to be an interesting discussion given the readership of El Reg.
The problem I have with allowing Devs to decide all aspects of how something should be done is that they ignore the cost of technical debt. Six months in, when performance in the real world is poor, and the architects are finally allowed to look at the crap that was released, the Devs just claim ignorance and say that it passed the sprint demo.
The Devs then get all the credit for delivering the widget on time, and "legacy IT" gets all the blame for the last-minute costs of making it secure, performant and operationally reliable.
>>Total BS, try using agile on a very large fixed price, fixed function, fixed delivery date project and you are toast.
No, sorry but that's simply wrong. Large projects can be delivered with an agile method. Done it on multiple ecommerce projects (£10m big enough for you?) where launch dates are fixed because TV advertising's been bought, budgets are fixed because I was an SI and functionality was written up in epics and wireframes. Fortnightly sprints, automated builds and testing, CI/CD. All the things you say can't work at scale. They can and they do.
@edlakka, sorry but it's not agile that's at fault in your situation.
your agile teams didn't work with you at the beginning to agree the server build.
your agile teams could have developed their software, their table layouts etc. then worked with your teams to implement the service once the solution was functionally complete
your agile teams could have built their software to not have dependencies on your builds
your agile teams could have deployed onto cloud platforms and supported them themselves
Agile isn't at fault here because agile doesn't specify any method beyond iteration and constant checking with the stakeholder as the iterations progress.
You're describing a failure of process agreement, maturity and delivery.
That first delivery *is* useful because although it can't be used it can be tested and accepted. A sprint - especially at the beginning - doesn't have to be shippable, it just has to be testable. It may take multiple sprints to get to the minimum viable product but each sprint along the way should deliver incremental benefits - an interface, a database table, a screen layout with accepted UX.
And as for the DBA, just buy him a pint and he'll shut up!
Agile does work and saying it doesn't is ignoring vast numbers of successful agile projects. It's like saying that waterfall doesn't work because of all the failed waterfall projects (and let's be honest, there are some fantastic examples of government waterfall project disasters).
This scheme seems like it was doomed no matter how it was delivered because the whole point of agile is that it delivers iteratively and continuously. If there isn't a step forward for more than a couple of sprints, a good agile project would be asking why and doing something about it. It sounds like this project simply didn't follow any governance. That's not a methodology failure; it's a governance failure.
Much of what's being discussed here is for dealing with physical failure but it's good to see virtual failure scenarios also being discussed. I once was involved with an Oracle database that got a logical block corruption. Not only would it not re-start, we couldn't do a restore because we'd done bit-level backups so they contained the same logically-corrupted block. The block had been written four days earlier so to go back before that point would have meant losing four days worth of data.
It's not therefore a question of instantaneous data replication across n+1 sites at zero latency. True RPO-0 means being able to write the same raw data to two totally different storage (software AND hardware) solutions across multiple locations. No-one is going to pay for that.
So he says "working software" and you assume it's undocumented and thrown over a fence? You must have some scars (don't we all?).
Agile doesn't mean no documentation. Agile doesn't mean no implementation planning/testing.
I've never seen such antipathy on these forums for something that - just because it's often done badly - is proven to work. And work well.
No, we don't start without some scope. We get a vision. We work on what that might look like from a solution perspective. Some basic NFR. From those we write some epics. We organise those into sprints and start to break them up into user stories. Hopefully we have enough of a business case to get some idea of budget. We fit the solution to the budget and set some expectations of when an MVP will be ready and how much of the scope will be covered by it. The MVP has *appropriate* levels of documentation/training/infrastructure/etc. but since this MVP might just crash and burn we haven't spent a fortune on an end-state architecture.
If the MVP is successful, we start on the backlog and look at what might be necessary to meet the new NFR.
I really don't understand why so many of the comments on here are so negative.
In which case they wouldn't be patent trolls! Apple get reported because this is neither interesting nor innovative and therefore not worthy of a patent.
There are existing apps available for internal wayfaring in shopping malls (see Westfield) which work on Android phones and can tell where you are vertically and horizontally done through monitoring signal strenth to the wi-fi. It was (I don't know if it still is) impossible to do this on Apple devices as Apple wouldn't allow developers to access the signal strength.
Ironic therefore that Apple should now try to patent something that has been possible on Android for at least three years
Yes, it's technically correct. Yes, there was corruption, of course, This Is Thailand!
But come on! This has happened before under every Thai government for decades. So, for once, the government is rewarding the poor (as well of course themselves, that is a given) instead of just rewarding Bangkok.
And let's not pretend that TS is ruling secretively. It was on their election posters! And please point me to the alternative honest politicians who have only the country's best interests at heart that you would propose take over. Please remember Thailand is nominally a democracy so your proposed alternatives will need to be believable to the Thai electorate who rather like the "family of leeches".
Then you need to negotiate harder with Oracle. Their position on hardware cores and VM's that are not based on Oracle VM is untenable when challenged. And in my experience they will back down every time to avoid providing ammunition to the likes of VMWare who will call restraint of trade if they could only get the evidence.
I moved large amounts of databases to bigger hardware using VMs and paid Oracle no extra money.
The Social Enterprise is not about using a Facebook site or Twitter for communicating internally. This is about using products like Yammer or Chatter to have a private internal social networking capability to allow an easy "stream of consciousness" update on what people are working on, what they have seen elsewhere that's relevant to work, what they need to know but don't know where or who to ask. It solves one of the problems that most companies have of carp intranet sites that are still Web 1.0 with no investment or interaction. Social Enterprises relocate communication from email (which is or should be to a closed group and therefore non-inclusive) to a noticeboard-type approach where anyone can ask a question or publish something interesting to anyone who wants to answer it or know about it.
It's not about publishing the pictures of who you did last night! And it's not spying.
The vast unwashed majority of the minority who have been getting problems will just write them off as "Innernet stuff".
Of the minority who bother to check the forums, the majority will see something is being done and do nothing believing it will eventually get fixed and hence, stop worrying about it.
Of the minority of the minority who want to do something about it, a further minority not scared by technology will install Wireshark.
What's the problem with that?
Not even Michelle Pfeiffer could save it. Does it save the film that at one point (Michelle singing to her presumed dead ero who is visualised all in white standing atop a pile of (white) smashed-up motorbikes surrounded by (white) clouds) I fell out of my chair laughing?
No, I don't think so.
Expecting to get a near-Christmas delivery slot with five days notice shows an unrealistic expectation in my opinion. Christmas slots open on the 1st December and are usually gone by the end of that day. Regular shoppers are aware of this and ensure their order is placed by lunchtime on the 1st.
As for the rest, re-opening an order and failing to re-checkout releases the slot to be grabbed by some other lucky punter.
The supermarkets online operations are all over-subscribed at Christmas. This is not a failure in the IT but in the fulfilment that simply cannot flex vans for one or two days in the way IT can flex some servers.
Separately, mixing the two stories into a single one is disingenuous. The comments about Fortnums might lead on to believe that Sainsburys suffered from load issues which it did not. This year's Christmas rush was nothing on last year's that coincided with the snow.
Yes, I remember early Ethernet, when TCP/IP was an add-on to Xenix and Excelan cards cost £800. Arcnet was great but yes, the terminators being different was a royal PITA.
IPX was easy until I got a batch of cheap NICs where two had the same MAC address.
And Thick-net was fine once drop-cables became cheap enough that my boss didn't force me to make them by hand with soldering iron in hand!
You owe me a new laptop. My lunch is now all over it!
FWIW, the DVLA clearly knew what it said when they sold the plate for £399 but they are entitled to change their minds I suppose. Words do change their meanings over time. It's now OK to sell clothes labelled FCUK but consider how rude it is to call someone a lawyer or worse, a banker!