Clothing again, a cheerful picture, Richard the Limahl fan and are we touching enough?

Welcome back to, allegedly, the most depressing time of the year! I don’t think so, we have a lot of exciting projects to look forward to. Getting mobile and Wallet out there, finally sorting out our tagging, improving the look and feel of the key customer journeys, radically improving our loan conversion rate, refactoring the portal, moving to continuous delivery, improving Compare, learning more, meeting new people…….

Some of us wear hats, even indoors. Yes, that was a lovely hat that Markos was wearing today, he looked like an extra from a film set in 1930’s New York and featuring Mafia gangs. I think we should all get one, it could be the team hat. On other clothing matters, it was brought to my attention that a serial offender with sartorial ineptitude did it again. Mark once again managed to turn up to the office with his jumper on back to front and inside out. His excuse was he was in very early but I believe Derek gets in at 3.30 am most days and he manages to get his clothes on the right way round.  I am not sure how we can help Mark with his special needs but all suggestion gratefully received. 

If this doesn’t make you smile then you are made of stone. My daughter had a balloon, just the one, we don’t like to spoil her. She decided to draw a face on it which is the kind of face you will only get from the imagination of a of a young mind unencumbered with cynicism. An example for us all?

Image

Richard Grant is a Limahl fan! The other day he kept going on about his seminal hit song ‘Never Ending Story’. I don’t know why, maybe they had the same haircut in the 80’s. For the benefit of our younger readers please see below. You should ask him.

Image

Are we touching enough? Before you call Operation Yewtree please read on … I found this link  “The teams that touched the most cooperated the most, and won the most.” in an article on 10 research backed steps to building a great team, which is also well worth reading.  (http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2013/07/great-team/) The article, which references serious research by Berkley university, goes on to describe some pretty good touching techniques; “fist bumps, high fives, chest bumps, leaping shoulder bumps, chest punches, head slaps, head grabs, low fives, high tens, half hugs, and team huddles”  I will pay money to see a team or teams doing some “head slaps” followed by a couple of “leaping shoulder bumps”. Seriously though happy teams are the best teams so lets all think of ways that we can implement to further improve the mood. 

Our colleagues downstairs continue to quietly make some great improvements to Tesco Compare on a shoestring budget. They will on the 22nd of this month launch the ability to integrate Clubcard with Tesco Compare, which sounds like it will make a big difference to their site traffic. They are even calling it their ‘Meerkat’ (which if you are interested was dreamt up by VCCP) so feel free to do stupid accents when you see them. 

Found this interesting blog post. Does raise some interesting questions about how you would implement a SOA strategy and ensure you can cope with multiple device types at the end of those services.

http://blog.programmableweb.com/2012/05/15/why-rest-keeps-me-up-at-night/

Ivan Zero Defects keeps coming up with some really interesting blogs to look at. If he carries on like this I may have to give him his very own special weekly section and a t-shirt with a big 0 on it. That aside please have a look because Cucumber really does help promote a culture of zero defects. 

http://blog.cucumber.pro/a-sneak-peak-at-cucumber-pro/

As you know I am a visual person so I love this. Maybe we could represent our architecture in the same style as Alfred Barr’s Cubism and Abstract art. Have a look….

http://www.brainpickings.org/index.php/2012/12/21/100-diagrams-that-changed-the-world/

Some people don’t like Agile. If you are one or meet one you may want to read.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/stevedenning/2012/04/17/the-case-against-agile-ten-perennial-management-objections/

Also, well worth a read, particularly about solving ‘wicked problems’ and dealing with uncertainty. The US Air Force lost a staggering $1.3 billion on an IT project. In fact this salutary lesson has led to “Section 804 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2010 requiring the military to apply Agile methods to information technology systems”. 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/stevedenning/2012/12/11/reconciling-innovation-with-control-the-air-forces-1-3-billion-lesson-in-agile/

Have a great weekend. I have a rare night out with Louise to celebrate her birthday (age undisclosed) so I hope she will be nice to me!

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