Monday, January 30, 2006

Where do I start with Agile?

So you want to bring Agile into your software development process. And you are wondering where to start. That’s a tough question for each team does different things well. I always like to start anything new with teams by getting a baseline, that way we can show improvement and we can celebrate. We can also more easily identify the low hanging fruit.  Just the process of getting the baseline creates some interesting dialogue amongst the team. Anyhow, I like to keep it simple, so I took the 27 rules and practices of extreme programming, put them in a spreadsheet and made a wag of the percentage of time I actually saw the rule or practice being implemented. For one of the companies I worked with they implemented three of the rules and practices over 90% of the time. These three were; they measured project velocity (in their own way, but they measured it), their unit testing was awesome and they had really good collective code ownership. The other rules and practices implementation varied from less than 90% all the way to non-existent. That’s ok, gives room for improvement

Monday, January 16, 2006

Adventures in CSS

So everytime I build a new site I start coding in straight html. And inevitably I come to the point where I am becoming frustrated with the lack of flexibility html has to build nice looking sites. So, I start using CSS to get the good looking stuff done. So if your finding that you just can’t get the look you need, start your readings / learnings in Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). In the long run a good understanding of CSS will go a long way for you. And while your at it review some material on good design, I’ve always found Robin William's books to be right on!

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Is educational blogging upon us

I think so… When I review a number of articles and sites on the subject of educational blogging, I believe it is now become the cognitive framework tool du-jour. I recently set up a blog for my daughters grade five newsletter, there are free blog servers now dedicated to K12 school students, University students and Educators in general. Two of my courses want blogs. One asks for it directly, the other wants a learning journal. So here we go, EduBlogging. This shift makes total sense. We are moving toward tools for Personal Knowledge Management (PKM) and Personal Learning Tools. A blog provides one place to store our thoughts as we learn. Obviously, a blog is single layered, thinks will change…

Agile Learner Design

Last term I submitted a paper called Agile Instructional Design. I believe this subject needs a more thorough investigation and supporting research. I have added a category to my blog which will reference all my work, musings, references toward this subject. If you have an interest in this subject may I suggest you read the paper and subscribe to this blogs RSS feed.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Friday, January 06, 2006

UNESCO Virtual U

Just needed to post a link to this site. As many of you know my fascination with Open Source and Education.  Here is more evidence of the traction it is gaining.  This UNESCO site has a very rich international list of links to other open initiatives and a great amount of reference material toward the inevitable goal of global openness to education.  May we all have access to education. Get’s me thinking were is the overlap with any of the end poverty initiatives…