Bikes, athletes a strange evening and fresh air

I thought I was going to struggle for material this week but how I was wrong. I have so much that I am going to have to save the picture of Andy Ryan finishing off a cow for another week; he’d already had a camel.

PCA. As you all know we went live on Monday night and across the board we experienced a really smooth delivery. This was a fantastic achievement from a large number of people across the bank, not least in the team and I am personally very proud of how we have done as a bank. It gives me great confidence that we can move forward with vigour and determination and not just be a good bank but also be better than all those who are entering the finance space. Exciting times indeed! My thanks goes out to all those who have been involved, you know who you are and you should all be very proud.

Cycling. A lot of people seem to have been inspired by the forthcoming Tour De France, starting in Yorkshire, and signed up for the 4 Abbey’s Challenge that took place last weekend. Unfortunately, I couldn’t make but I understand there was a whole range of machines and people of varying abilities that turned up to take part. The Long Suffering Mrs Tucker turned up on the machine below. I think she misheard the ‘road’ part and assumed it was actually over a few abbeys.

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Talking of differing abilities, have a look at these two! Fraser looks like he hasn’t had this much fun since he discovered he could make boob shapes in his Vi editor. The slumped figure is none other than Captain Haphazard taking a slight breather after attempting a hillock on the gentle bike ride we went for the other night. It was very pleasant, particularly going over the Forth Road bridge but I did reflect that we must have looked like an odd couple when we stopped for a breather (and chips) on South Queensferry pier. Especially when he started quoting poetry. I think we ruined the romantic ambience for everybody else there.

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We say goodbye to Lesley, which is very sad but must be tempered by the fact that she is only moving 50 meters away. Anyway in time honoured bank tradition a few drinks were organised. Obviously, I went along even though I am off the beer at the moment in an effort to avoid excessive middle aged corpulence. Well what started as a quiet evening went “south” very quickly. I cannot tell you what Margarita’s mate, Fiona, said as I was blushing and given my lack of filters I hate to think what it would do to the rest of you if I repeated what I heard. However, I can tell you I found out that Margarita has a place in Florida that has a water bed, a shower that can fit 8 people and a large bowl for keys, I am not sure of the significance of any of  this. Maybe she has lots of friends who like to be clean, get tired and often lose their car keys.  When I thought the evening could not get any more surreal some really odd things then happened. Lesley started drinking drinks that were on fire. Now I am not an expert on health and safety but even I know that you are best advised to not consume something that is on fire. However, before the alarmed barman could react she had downed the lot and slumped on the table. Then a really strange person called ‘Christine’ lurched into the room muttering something about a hen do. We managed to get the door staff to remove them. I am never going out in Edinburgh ever again.

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It was really nice the other day to see some of the team gambolling in the car park. It was like watching a group of beagles sprung from a lab. They didn’t know how to react to the space, fresh air and sunshine so instead of running away they stood in a circle and tried to play keepy uppy with something that wasn’t a ball. Often it is the clever people who aren’t very practical, for example, Alan Turing often failed to tie up his shoe laces. Still I am glad there was nobody from Glasgow outside with them because it would have been ‘taps off’. If anybody less cerebral in the team could help them with balance, ball control and generally how to behave in open spaces that would be great.

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Ivan ‘Zero Defects’ Corner….

10 Key Agile Principles, I would say wallet would struggle to hit 50% of these at present, on a positive note its a great opportunity for change if people are willing to change?

http://www.allaboutagile.com/what-is-agile-10-key-principles/

Throw away user stories when they are delivered, they are not requirements.  Use them to drive conversation, implement code and automated scenarios at the point of use only. Discuss, Do & Dump…

http://gojko.net/2014/03/25/throw-user-stories-away-after-they-are-delivered/
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Richard ‘Beard’ Davidson’s corner
Interesting article on how to manage developer: http://mikehadlow.blogspot.co.uk/2014/06/heisenberg-developers.html (although this massively conflicts with Davidson motivational pamphlets first rule: Just get it done). I’m not entirely sure I agree with it al, but it’s an interesting perspective.
That blog, plus the fact we have been doing a lot of spikes in loans recently made me look at what people think about running spikes:
http://scaledagileframework.com/spikes/
For me, timeboxing a spike and having a clear goal as to what the spike is to achieve is important to stop the task getting distracted by.. oooh shiny thing.
Also continuing my mild obsession with kibana in my free time. Kibana / logstash / elasticsearch helped us a lot at my last place to find out what was going on with our system and gave pretty graphs. Everyone loves graphs.
http://www.elasticsearch.org/overview/kibana/
If anyone is interested in it, I’d happily do a brown paper bag on it.
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A quick rant from Markos
http://www.theverge.com/2014/6/11/5799970/expedia-is-now-accepting-bitcoin-for-hotel-bookings
And to back up his ‘ranting’ here is another article about Bitcoin

http://thenextweb.com/google/2014/06/12/google-and-yahoo-finance-now-show-the-price-of-bitcoin/

ATM of the future? Apparently they are called Electronic Banking Kiosks or EBKs.

http://qz.com/219950/behold-the-atm-of-the-future-jpmorgan-is-now-rolling-out/

Tim Berners Lee, just a web developer?

http://usvsth3m.com/post/88656046308/tim-berners-lee-described-as-web-developer-in-biggest

Open source digital comic app.

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/jun/06/alan-moore-digital-comics-open-source-electricomics-app

It won’t surprise you but Captain Haphazard was once goaded into eating too many chills. Have a look at 1000 Danes doing the same.

http://holykaw.alltop.com/1000-danes-simultaneously-eat-a-ghost-chili-pepper-best-video-ever-results-video?tu3=1

Don’t forget all of you who are fathers or have fathers that it is Father’s Day on Sunday. I myself have a long list of things that I want to happen that I will be presenting to Louise. None of them involve the children and some could put her in traction.

Have a good weekend everybody………

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