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Software Configuration Management

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Offshore Development: How Not to Screw It Up In his session at Cloud Expo, Alan Winters, an entertainment executive/TV producer turned serial entrepreneur, will present a success story of an entrepreneur who has both suffered through and benefited from offshore development across multiple businesses: The smart choice, or how to select the right offshore development partner Warning signs, or how to minimize chances of making the wrong choice Collaboration, or how to establish the most effective work processes Budget control, or how to maximize project results within possible constraints You will see how it is possible to find your perfect software development partner and establish a long-term business partnership in the world of offshore development. Speaker Bio Alan Winters is an entertainment executive/TV producer turned serial entrepreneur. After spending two deca... (more)

Software Error vs Exception – In Real World Examples | @DevOpsSummit #DevOps #APM #Monitoring

Software Error vs Exception - In Real World Examples By Matt Watson After 15+ years of software development, I still use the words error and exception interchangeably. But is there a difference between exceptions and errors? I think it is best to make the distinction with some examples of errors vs exceptions. Example #1: Dishwasher Errors Let's use this example of a dishwasher. Both images depict a problem, or error, that happened with the dishwasher. One was clearly user error of putting in the wrong type of soap. The other was an error that the dishwasher recognized and showed an error code for this. I think this dishwasher example perfectly sums up the difference between an error and an exception. Both of these problems were errors. The difference here is the designer and engineers designed the product to handle one of the errors. It was an exception that the e... (more)

The Hidden Business CoST: Consumerization of Sharing Tools

Sharing files with friends has never been easier. Whether it is via old-school hard copy methods like CDs, DVDs and USB drives, nefarious peer-to-peer torrents like BitTorrent or new shared, private cloud storage services like Dropbox, getting a photo or music file from one person to another takes mere seconds. The problem is that people inside businesses aren't using these services just to share personal files. They are circumventing secured content management systems like SharePoint in favor of consumer-friendly services in order to share files with third parties. For businesses, Consumerization of Sharing Tools (CoST) can encourage insecure file sharing and the impact can be startling. WikiLeaks was the result of a failed SharePoint deployment. The user simply circumvented the SharePoint system, downloaded extremely sensitive data and made it available to the w... (more)

iPhone Developer Summit: iPhone Testing (or Lack Thereof)

On Monday, Apple announced a whole bunch of exciting and innovative new products.  Two of the more anticipated were the iPhone 3GS and version 3.0 of the iPhone software.  Both of these introduce interesting new features for iPhone users everywhere.  You can watch the entire keynote here. Apple’s keynote presentation went very well, but there were a couple of snags while demoing some of the new iPhone apps.  Two different apps had problems with their demos.  One app had an issue with some on-stage props, but the other simply stopped working in the middle of its presentation. The presenters for both apps recovered and continued to highlight other features of their products.  However, I can’t exactly fault them for having trouble.  In fact, what actually surprised me was that so many of the apps worked given how difficult Apple makes testing iPhone apps. Here’s rough... (more)

Windows Azure: A Breakthrough in Cloud Computing

Despite the huge announcement of this cloud computing development platform, the blogoshpere has been relatively quiet.  Now we’ve had a little time to reflect, what does Windows Azure really mean for cloud computing?  What will it mean for the future of web and software development, as well as the future of computing? If you are so inclined, you can read a lot of glossy bumf in the Windows Azure factsheet which doesn’t really tell you a great deal.  One key message to take from it, however, is this one: Windows Azure is an open platform that will support both Microsoft and non-Microsoft languages and environments. It will certainly be easier for software developers to make cloud-based applications.  Not only that, but there will finally be some kind of universal standard for the development of all things web-based. This is exactly what we were discussing a few week... (more)

Successful Software Best Practices: Requirements

I'm not in love with "requirements". There are some who think that "Requirements" are the be-all and end-all for building great software. They're not wrong, but they are off by a third of a bubble. Great software companies come from creating and bringing to market (with a great "go to market" strategy) quality software that solves one or more significant problems for an appropriately chosen target audience - and does so measurably better than alternative solutions. How does such successful software happen? Certainly not by accident. Understanding the Target Customer It comes from truly understanding the "target customer" - their needs, their plans, and their pain, the severity of their pain, their ability and willingness to spend money to fix that pain, and knowing what other alternative solutions exist for them (and how your proposed solution compares). And this un... (more)

Book Review: Java Coding Guidelines

Although this book is written for the Java programmer, I would recommend reading it to any .NET or iOS developer as well. It is a must read for the Java developer, but is also a valuable read for developers of other languages because the guidelines are often built around a programmer's intent. No matter what language you use most, many of the intentions that are targeted by the guidelines are the same. Do I wish there was a C# and Objective-C version of this book? Heck Yeah!!! But, one of the things that helped get to a deeper understanding of the guidelines was thinking about where and how they apply to C# and Objective-C. There is Secure Coding in C and C++ (Second Edition) and The CERT C Secure Coding Standard which are both great too. The guidelines are broken down by chapter. The book also has an appendix that lists all 75 guidelines and whether or not the guidel... (more)

The Change Management Balancing Act

Managing change in a software system is a lot like balancing your personal finances. With or without a resource allocation plan, the assets available and the demands placed on them change constantly. Whether it's your code or your checkbook, the result of mismanaging change over time is likely to be the same: disaster. The complexity and volatility of today's business demands have rendered "traditional" (i.e., ad hoc) methods for software change management obsolete. Distributed teams, multiple platforms, strict cost accountability, compressed release cycles: these mounting pressures dramatically escalate the risks of deploying new applications and integrating existing ones. With technology now serving as the primary interface to customers and partners, an organization may literally "bet the business" on the outcome of a software development effort. Now more than ev... (more)

The IBM Rational Approach to SOA and Web Services

The need to respond to changing business demands with flexible IT solutions has led many businesses to service oriented architectures (SOAs). An SOA is an IT framework that combines individual business functions and processes, called services, to implement sophisticated business applications and processes. SOA is an approach to IT that considers business processes as reusable components or "services" that are independent of the applications and computing platforms on which they run. SOA solutions are designed as assemblies of services in which the description of the assembly is a managed, first-class aspect of the system, and hence amenable to analysis, change, and evolution. A system is then viewed as a choreographed set of service interactions, so enterprise solutions appear as federations of services connected via well-specified contracts that define their servi... (more)

Invitation-Only Social Network for Real Estate

Social networks and interactive Web 2.0 technologies have become dominant features of social life and news lately, and millions regularly spend hours each month on sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. One startup company with a selective vision for a real estate investor oriented social network decided to focus on the quality of members as opposed to quantity. The invitation-only community, ConnectedInvestors.com (www.ConnectedInvestors.com), was founded in 2005 by real estate investor, entrepreneur, and author Ross Hamilton. Hamilton says he started the real estate investor focused social network to help other investors create a community to support each other as well as to serve as an online way to track deal flow and utilize all of the best-of-breed available web marketing tools like automated customer list building, automatic customer follow up, and audi... (more)

Going Away From the ‘Dark Side’ and Into the Startup World

I recently decided to make a career change and at the end of the month will be leaving the world of venture capital (as some affectionately refer to as ‘The Dark Side’) for the maybe greener and definitely more uncertain pastures of the startup world.  My time at L Capital over the last year has been great, and I’ve learned an incredible amount about startups and investing, but I recently came upon an opportunity which was just too good to pass up. I’m joining an early stage software company in the virtualization management and automation space and will be involved in all manner of customer development, biz dev, and marketing.  I’m going to work with a great team and a stellar set of investors, all who are laser focused on building a great company.  Needless to say, I am very excited about this move. I’m not going to post details about the company publicly at this... (more)