I’ve been meaning to make a trip west for several years, but have never gotten around to it. That is about to change. I will be heading out to the west coast around the Thanksgiving holiday. First, I’m heading to Colorado to see a side of my family I have not seen in many years. My fathers brother and sister are out in Fort Collins, Colorado. My parents have actually been out there several times in the past years, but due to other circumstances I have been unable to make it out there. I’m going during thanksgiving so I can see my grandparents and my step cousins who will all be in for the Holidays. Once I’m done in Colorado I will be heading to northern California. My good friends from both college and high school have found themselves in the same relative area. Both left almost immediately after college. I have not made it out since they left. This trip is long overdue and I can’t wait to see how they are getting on out there. So, if anyone happens to be out in Colorado or Cali, let me know!
I could get started on some of the most interesting things I’ve done when I was tired (like talking to a telephone poll) but I would like to share a quick story. A friend of mine and I were taking the subway the other evening when she walked right into the turnstile and it did not turn. She looked down at the darn thing wondering why it blocked her entrance. After a few seconds of puzzlement she realized that she had forgot to swipe her metrocard.
Okay, okay, not rest on my friends embarrassment, I would just like to add that sleep tends to have a profound effect on people. In the past I’ve read that sleep allows you to convert short term memory into long term memory. Sleep allows me to focus and remember more. I shoot for 8 hours a night and when I get that, I’m much more on my game. When I miss it I do silly things like walk into a turnstile (or worse).
I was having a conversation with a couple of friends the other day, when the topic of Software Engineering came up. I have been working in the software industry for over two years. I do not consider this to be a large amount of time. Nevertheless, I have learned a significant amount of software engineering.
Let me back up. In college, most computer science students take a class on how to design and build software, titled Software Engineering. In this class they give you a textbook and teach you the different “models” of software engineering. They present this Utopian view of the software engineering process that I have never seen implemented in the real world. Most of what I see is similar to this graphic I found:
The biggest problem with the software engineering designs is that the business side does not understand the benefits of software engineering. It might be a good idea to force the business people to take a class in the pitfalls of software engineering. I have heard countless stories of people creating rush prototypes of a project, showing it their business sponsors, and their business asking for it be in production the next day. Most prototypes are not designed to be released. Often times they are missing key components of functionality(like login validation).
Now, I’m not saying that software design is useless. It is necessary to to have an idea of what you are building before you begin to code. What I’m saying is that I don’t think that the software engineering process that are described in the software engineering books in school is valid the work environment. It is good to teach them, but teachers should also stretch the variations that occur in the real world.
One last thing, I’d like to make a plead for my favorite design methodology. Test-driven design is a wonderful idea. There are problems with it, the design ends up being only as good as the tests that are written. Most of the time the tests that are written in the beginning before construction of the code are not sufficient for a fully functional program. I feel this stems from the fact that businesses are often rushing to produce something and you don’t see any results while writing tests. I myself have been guilty of rushing people through designing tests when I was in a business role.
To all people who are reading this from a sponsorship position, please allow your developers the time they need to ensure good design. In the end it will help you products.
The best feeling as a coach is when one of your students has a great day. Yesterday evening was one of those days, and it means enough for me to be slightly late to work in order to write about it. There are three major components in cheerleading for a guy, throwing people around, throwing ourselves around, and yelling. Yesterday was a very strong day for our guys, to be called Big and Little.
Yesterday was Big’s day. He hit some amazing tosses with his partner, nearly getting to his next level of stunt. This was due to a HUGE improvement in technique for Big and I look forward to see how he does today with it. That wasn’t the limit to his success. He also strived in the second aspect of throwing oneself around, aka tumbling. He has grown faster in this area than almost anyone I have seen, starting from his level and really taking it up a notch. I attribute this to his incredibly positive attitude, and will power.
Little also had a good day, though he did it all on his own. His stunting was on par with his previous performances, but he was one of three people on the team to step up up and throw his tuck on his own. He landed all attempts cleanly, and was one of only three people on the team to attempt without a spot.
All in all, way to go guys. I can’t shout you out all the time (as the girls would get jealous j/k), but last night you really were awesome, and you deserve the credit.
When I went to UCA camp last weekend there were two new dances being pushed around:
aka, the Soulja Boy. And:
Check them out. They are fun.