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Waggle Dance -or- Standup Meeting

Bees do a dance that bee keeper refer to as the Waggle dance...

It is with great pleasure that you can watch and using the power of science have this dance translated into English.

Bee Dance (Waggle Dance) by Bienentanz GmbH
What does this have to do with Scrum?  The power of a metaphor was well known to the creators of Extreme Programming (XP) - so much so, that it is one of only 12 "rules" that those really smart people decided to enshrine into their process.  It is also the most likely rule to not be mentioned in any survey of software development practices.  Unless you happen to be chatting with Eric Evens, and he may agree that he's captured the underlying principle in Domain-Driven Design, the Ubiquitous Language pattern.


Have you ever observed a great scrum team using a classic tool of many innovative company environments - the physical visual management board (Scrum Task Board). The generic behavior for a small group of people (say around 7 plus/minus 2) is for the group to discover that a form of dance where the speaker moves to the board and manipulates objects on the board as they speak gives everyone else the context of what story they are working upon and what task they are telling us they have completed. Then they exit stage left - so to speak. And the next dancer approaches from stage right, to repeat the dance segment. Generally speaking one circuit of this group is a complete dance for the day. The team is then in sync with all there team mates, and may have negotiated last minute changes to their daily plan, as the dance proceeded. In my observation of this dance great teams complete this ritual in about 15 minutes. They appear to need to perform this dance early in the morning to have productive days. And groups that practice this dance ritual well, out perform groups that are much larger and groups that don't dance.


So going all honey bee meta for a moment...  Let's use our meta-cognition ability to think about the patterns.  We love to pattern recognize - our brain is well designed for that (one of the primary reasons a physical visualization of work is so much more productive as a accelerator of happiness than virtualization of the same work items).

When do we use great metaphors - in design great NEW experiences for people that are reluctant to change.  And to communicate the desired behaviors, the exciting new benefits to adopting something new.  I'm thinking of the 1984 introduction of the Graphical User Interface by the Apple pirate team that produced the GUI, the Mouse, the Pointer, the DropDown Menu, etc.

Can you see a pattern in this... a pattern that relates to people changing systems, behaviors, disrupting the status quo?  It is resonating in my neurons, I'm having a heck of a time translating these neuron firing waves of intuitions, into the motor cortex to make my stupid fingers pound out the purposefully retarding movements on a QWERTY keyboard to communicate with you over Space-Time.  If only we could dance!

See Also:

The Waggle Dance of the Honeybee by Georgia Tech College of Computing
How can honeybees communicate the locations of new food sources? Austrian biologist, Karl Von Frisch, devised an experiment to find out! By pairing the direction of the sun with the flow of gravity, honeybees are able to explain the distant locations of food by dancing. "The Waggle Dance of the Honeybee" details the design of Von Frisch's famous experiment and explains the precise grammar of the honeybees dance language with high quality visualizations.
This video is a design documentary, developed by scientists at Georgia Tech's College of Computing in order to better understand and share with others, the complex behaviors that can arise in social insects. Their goal at the Multi-Agent Robotics and Systems (MARS) Laboratory is to harness new computer vision techniques to accelerate biologists' research in animal behavior. This behavioral research is then used, in turn, to design better systems of autonomous robots.


I was just reminded of @davidakoontz's wonderful metaphor for the daily #Scrum: waggle dance :) pic.twitter.com/h3c1B49mkC

— Tobias Mayer (@tobiasmayer) April 7, 2017


Categories: Blogs

Agile Portugal, Lisbon, Portugal, 2-3 June 2017

Scrum Expert - Thu, 04/20/2017 - 10:30
Agile Portugal is a two-day international conference that gathers practitioners from the Agile software development and Scrum project management community with invited international leading experts...

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Categories: Communities

Agile Coach Camp Denmark, Dragor, Denmark, May 18-20 2017

Scrum Expert - Thu, 04/20/2017 - 09:00
Agile Coach Camp Denmark is a three-day event that serves as an unconference for Agile coaches of Denmark and other countries. The Agile Coach Camp Denmark is a free, not-for-profit, practitioner-run...

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Categories: Communities

GitKraken v2.4

About SCRUM - Hamid Shojaee Axosoft - Wed, 04/19/2017 - 22:14

In GitKraken version 2.4, substantial improvements have been made to lots of actions you perform every day. You know those little quirks in GitKraken that sometimes made you say an expletive out loud? It turns out that one of our own, Dan Suceava, regularly swears at his monitor, oftentimes with GitKraken being the recipient of his wrath.

Who is this Dan Suceava?

Hmm, where should we begin…. You don’t know Dan, but you probably use his deftly-coded API regularly. Dan is the VP of Engineering here at Axosoft and has been with the company for more than 11 years. Even though he’s not an active GitKraken developer, his work touches all aspects of Axosoft as a company. You could say that a piece of Dan goes into every release—but that’s a somewhat disturbing thought!

Anyways, what does he actually do, you might also ask? This question is harder to answer. All we know is, he turns up to work, and then, later, he leaves. Between his comings and goings, Dan enjoys saying “no,” a lot, he swears at his computer, and he drinks more Jack Daniel’s than any mortal man should. A sort of engineering equivalent to a Boo Radley–Sasquatch hybrid; he sits in a dark corner of one of our dev rooms, only to be rarely spotted in the kitchen. Some say he eats squirrels. Some say he uses Windows ME. But one thing no-one disputes is that Dan is a coding powerhouse. Much of Axosoft’s success can be attributed directly to Dan!

A rare sighting of Suceava outside of his natural habitat

So when it became apparent that one of Dan’s favorite products, GitKraken, is also the recipient of some of his curse words, the GitKraken team wanted to make things right. As a tribute to Dan, the GitKraken team is dedicating a release (or two) to fixing the issues that made Dan go through his stockpile of Jack Daniel’s at twice the rate he normally would. After getting a demo of his issues with GitKraken, the team realized these issues are going to make a lot of people (except for Jack Daniel) very happy.

Suceava updates
  • Before: GitKraken would dismiss 99.7% of issues as “user error,” muttering profanities under its breath.
  • Now: GitKraken is polite as can be, updating submodules correctly when switching branches, and initializing them faster (and recursively, if a submodule has submodules).
  • Before: When refreshing, there was a 90% chance that GitKraken DSRC either shrugged or barked “NO!” The other 10% of the time, the app took 3 days to complete the action.
  • Now: Commit sorting algorithm improvements mean the app is faster when refreshing.
  • Before: The app got drunk and forgot where it was, randomly disappearing only to reappear several hours later.
  • Now: the app remembers whether or not it was in full-screen mode when shut down, and the location of its Window. It will restore these settings when restarted.
  • Before: Checking out a remote branch beyond the graph history made the app highly irritable, giving the message “I should have started a farm,” and then accusing you of user error.
  • Now: Checking out a branch beyond 2,000 commits creates a local ref and checks out the branch, error-free.

This release includes 15 more bug fixes and other improvements. See the release notes for all the details.

P.S. Release notes can be translated from English to Suceava—enjoy!

Categories: Companies

Agile Alliance Announces AGILE2017 Program

Scrum Expert - Wed, 04/19/2017 - 18:12
The Agile Alliance has announces the program for AGILE2017, the largest international gathering of Agilists. The conference is widely considered the premier global event for the advancement of Agile...

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Categories: Communities

Scrum Alliance Creates Partnership With LeSS Company

Scrum Expert - Wed, 04/19/2017 - 17:34
The Scrum Alliance has announced a partnership with LeSS Company to support widespread adoption of Large-Scale Scrum (LeSS). Scrum Alliance interim CEO Lisa Hershman said, “Recognizing that...

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Categories: Communities

Storytelling: the Big Picture for Agile Efforts

Scrum Expert - Wed, 04/19/2017 - 16:32
Agile reminds us that the focus of any set of requirements needs to be on an outcome rather than a collection of whats and whos. Storytelling is a powerful tool to elevate even the most diehard...

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Categories: Communities

Axosoft v17.1: Burndown Chart Update

About SCRUM - Hamid Shojaee Axosoft - Tue, 04/18/2017 - 22:59

In Axosoft v17.1, we made a small adjustment to the way burndowns work, which should provide more accurate velocities for our users. Prior to v17.1, velocity was strictly based on the number of hours that were entered using work logs. This was great for the apple polishers that entered all of their work logs at the end of the day, for all items, without exception—but it lead to a lot of confusion for teams that weren’t adding work logs for all of their items (or any of their items).

We heard your protests about not having to add work logs for every single item, and we’ve accepted your peace offering of a Pepsi can to free you from the oppression of work logs.

pepsi commercial

Too soon? Sorry.

Burndown Velocity Update

Prior to this release, teams that used story points for estimation had burndowns that were often nonsensical—or that disappeared because work logs didn’t often make sense when completed work was estimated in points. The one behavior that changed in this release is decreasing an item’s remaining estimate manually, or by setting the item to `completed`. Axosoft will now update the burndown velocity as you’re getting work done.

For example, let’s say you have a bug fix that is estimated to be 4 hours worth of work, and you move the item to ‘completed’ without adding a work log. Previously, Axosoft would update all of the data points in the burndown and subtract 4 hours worth of work, as if the item was never in the release.

Prior to v17.1: burndown prior to v17.1 4 hours of work removed from all days. (First day goes from 164 down to 160 hours.)

Now, moving an item with 4 hours of work remaining to ‘completed’, will only subtract the 4 hours from the current day, and the work you completed will be reflected in the velocity.

After v17.1: burndown after v17.1 4 hours removed only from today. (First day remains at original value.) What you can expect with this change

Because Axosoft was previously only using logged work for velocity, you may notice that your velocity is now greater than it was for any previous sprint. This should be a more accurate representation of the rate at which your team is getting work done because Axosoft is now taking into account all the work you’ve completed for your items.

For more details about Axosoft burndown charts and velocity calculations, check out our support documentation.

Categories: Companies

Introduction to DevOps with Chocolate, LEGO and Scrum Game

Scrum Expert - Tue, 04/18/2017 - 16:15
If one of the first aim of Scrum was to break the silos between business analysis, development and testing, you can consider that improving the cooperation with the operation side of IT as the next...

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Categories: Communities

Visual Report Improvements

TargetProcess - Edge of Chaos Blog - Tue, 04/18/2017 - 09:33
Period scale for date axis

Dates are now scaled as continuous axes by default. If you need to use periodic scales for dates, you can switch scale type from the field popup.

2017-04-13-15-40-23

Legend

Legend filtering has been improved. Now, several categories in the legend can be selected, and changes will be reflected on the chart.

2017-04-13-15-24-42

 

Tooltip

The mechanics of tooltip have been improved. Projection to axis was added for stacked bars and areas to see the total value of the stacked items.

2017-04-13-15-33-27

We will really appreciate your feedback on our reports editor. What do you like about it? What could be improved? Let us know what you think at ux@targetprocess.com

Categories: Companies

Learning Git with GitKraken: Rebasing in GitKraken vs CLI

About SCRUM - Hamid Shojaee Axosoft - Tue, 04/18/2017 - 01:00

In these videos, Brett Goldman compares the experience of performing a very basic rebase in the CLI vs GitKraken, followed by a demonstration of what happens, and what to do, when conflicts occur. Take a look and subscribe to our YouTube channel for more videos about learning Git with GitKraken.

Categories: Companies

Leadership re-envisioned in the 21st Century

Is there a new form of leadership being envisioned in the 21st Century?  Is there someone challenging the traditional form of organizational structure?

Leading Wisely - a pod cast with Ricardo Semler.
Leading Wisely
"Join organizational changemaker Ricardo Semler in conversation with leaders challenging assumptions and changing how we live and work."
S1E01: Killing the Dinosaur Business Model (Part 1) with Basecamp’s Jason Fried & DHH

S1E02: Killing the Dinosaur Business Model (Part 2) with Basecamp’s Jason Fried & DHH
S1E03: Reinventing Organizations with Frederic Laloux

S1E04: Self-organization with Zappos' Tony Hsieh
S1E05: Busting Innovation Myths with David Burkus

S1E06: Merit and Self-Management with Jurgen Appelo

S1E07: Letting Values Inform Organizational Structure with Jos de Blok

S1E08: Corporate Liberation with Isaac Getz

S1E09: The Police & Self-Management with Erwin van Waeleghem

S1E10: Season Finale: The Common Denominator with Rich Sheridan of Joy Inc.


A ran across this series of 10 talks because I'm a fan of Joy, Inc. author and leader of Menlo innovations, Richard Sheridan.  I saw a tweet about his talk and found a bucket of goodness.
The Common Denominator with Rich Sheridan of Joy Inc.

Richard Sheridan on podcast Leading WiselySee Also:A Review of Leadership ModelsExamples of 21st C. CompaniesSafety - the perquisite for Leadership
A Leadership Paradox

Book List:
Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace by Ricardo SemlerJoy, Inc : How We Built a Workplace People Love by Richard SheridanReWork: Change the Way You Work Forever by David Heinemeier Hansson and Jason Fried
Reinventing Organizations: A Guide to Creating Organizations Inspired by the Next Stage in Human Consciousness by Frederic Laloux
Categories: Blogs

Certified Agile Leadership course in San Diego April 25-27

Agile Game Development - Mon, 04/17/2017 - 15:01
The key to successful agile adoption and growth lies not only with developers, but studio leadership as well. We all know that cross-discipline teams iterating on features creates a benefit, but to achieve the far greater (and rarer) reward of developer engagement and motivated productivity, you need deeper cultural change.  This requires a shift in the mindset of leadership.
The Certified Agile Leadership (CAL) course provides this shift.  It distills the experience and wisdom of decades of experience applying agile successfully and leads to true leadership transformation.  In taking the course, I personally found that not only were my leadership approaches transformed, but it altered how I engaged with family, friends and my own life.
I will be joining the CAL course being taught by my friend and occasional co-trainer Peter Green In San Diego on April 25th through the 27th.  Please join us!
http://agileforall.com/course/cal1/
Categories: Blogs

Blog Series: TDD and Process, Part 4

NetObjectives - Mon, 04/17/2017 - 14:16
Part 4: Redundancy In part 3, we examined how the same specification can be bound to the production system in different ways, producing executable tests that have various levels of granularity and speed, by creating different bindings for different purposes.  We started with the “full stack” binding: Next, we created a different binding that avoided accessing the database at all by mocking...

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Categories: Companies

Targetprocess v.3.11.1: add/edit permissions separated, expand all in List views

TargetProcess - Edge of Chaos Blog - Mon, 04/17/2017 - 08:59
'Expand All' in List views

You can now expand and collapse all of the first and second List hierarchy levels. If you hold Ctrl (Cmd) and click '>' then cards from both levels will be expanded. This works for the first two hierarchy levels of a List view and doesn't affect the third level of cards in terms of List setup.

Permissions to create users through the API for non-admins

Previously, only admin users could post Rest API requests to create and delete users. Now, non-admin users with 'add user' / 'delete user' permissions can create/delete users via API calls.

Add and edit permissions separated for user roles

Starting with v.3.11.1, user roles have separate permissions for adding and editing.

screen-shot-2017-04-11-at-3-32-00-pm

Request email notifications settings updated with "Requesters" check-box

You can set up a 'Request' workflow so that requesters get email notifications every time a specific event event occurs.

screen-shot-2017-04-11-at-4-29-23-pm

Visual Encoding improvements

It’s possible to create a predefined set of global Visual Encoding rules that can be applied to all views and all users. To do this, simply select the corresponding checkbox in the Visual Encoding tab and add the global rules that you want applied to every view in the system:

ve-global2

This setting can only be managed by Administrators; other users can see it in read-only mode.

Fixed Bugs
  • Visual studio add-in supports VS2015 now
  • It wasn't possible to delete a test plan if it had test cases that were run already
  • Fixed occasional improper results when searching by ID in a Relations tab
  • Fixed Project-Team assigments for Observer users according to their permissions.
  • Obsolete Tp.v2 option 'Show in lists/enable for filtering' removed from custom fields setup
  • Fixed User Story progress calculation when converting a Task with time records into a User Story
Categories: Companies

Velocity Calculus - The mathematical study of the changing software development effort by a team


In the practice of Scrum many people appear to have their favorite method of calculating the team's velocity. For many, this exercise appears very academic. Yet when you get three people and ask them you will invariability get more answers than you have belly-buttons.


Velocity—the rate of change in the position of an object; a vector quantity, with both magnitude and direction. “Calculus is the mathematical study of change.” — Donald Latorre 
This pamphlet describes the method I use to teach beginning teams this one very important Scrum concept via a photo journal simulation.

Some of the basic reasons many teams are "doing it wrong"... (from my comment on Doc Norton's FB question: Hey social media friends, I am curious to hear about dysfunctions on agile teams related to use of velocity. What have you seen?


  • mgmt not understanding purpose of Velocity empirical measure;
  • teams using some bogus statistical manipulation called an average without the understanding of the constrains that an average is valid within;
  • SM allowing teams to carry over stories and get credit for multiple sprints within one measurement (lack of understanding of empirical);
  • pressure to give "credit" for effort but zero results - culture dynamic viscous feedback loop;
  • lack of understanding of the virtuous cycle that can be built with empirical measurement and understanding of trends;
  • no action to embrace the virtuous benefits of a measure-respond-adapt model (specifically story slicing to appropriate size)
... there's 6 - but saving the best for last:
  • breaking the basic tenants of the scrum estimation model - allow me to expand for those who have already condemned me for violating written (or suggesting unwritten) dogma...
    • a PBL item has a "size" before being Ready (a gate action) for planning;
    • the team adjusts the PBL item size any/ever time they touch the item and learn more about it (like at planning/grooming);
    • each item is sized based on effort/etc. from NOW (or start of sprint - a point in time) to DONE (never on past sunk cost effort);
    • empirical evidence and updated estimates are a good way to plan;
  • therefore carryover stories are resized before being brought into the next sprint - also reprioritized - and crying over spilt milk or lost effort credit is not allowed in baseball (or sprint planning)

Day 1 - Sprint Planning
A simulated sprint plan with four stories is developed. The team forecast they will do 26 points in this sprint.




Day 2
The team really gets to work.




Day 3
Little progress is visible, concern starts to show.


Day 4Do you feel the sprint progress starting to slide out of control?



Day 5About one half of the schedule is spent, but only one story is done.



Day 6The team has started work on all four stories, will this amount of ‘WIP’ come back to hurt them?




Day 7
Although two stories are now done, the time box is quickly expiring.


Day 8
The team is mired in the largest story.



Day 9The output of the sprint is quite fuzzy. What will be done for the demo, what do we do with the partially completed work?


Day 10
The Sprint Demo day. Three stories done (A, B, & D) get demoed to the PO and accepted.



Close the SprintCalculate the Velocity - a simple arithmetic sum.



Story C is resized given its known state and the effort to get it from here to done. 



What is done with the unfinished story? It goes back into the backlog and is ordered and resized.



Backlog grooming (refinement) is done to prepare for the next sprint planning session.





Trophies of accomplishments help motivation and release planning. Yesterday’s weather (pattern) predicts the next sprints velocity.


Sprint 2 Begins with Sprint PlanningDay 1Three stories are selected by the team.  Including the resized (now 8 points) story C.

Day 2
Work begins on yet another sprint.


Day 3
Work progresses on story tasks.


The cycles of days repeats and the next sprint completes.


Close Sprint 2Calculate the Velocity - a simple arithmetic sum.


In an alternative world we may do more complex calculus. But will it lead us to better predictability?

In this alternative world one wishes to receive partial credit for work attempted.  Yet the story was resized based upon the known state and getting it to done.




Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. — Leonardo di Vinci 
Now let’s move from the empirical world of measurement and into the realm of lies.








Simply graphing the empirical results and using the human eye & mind to predict is more accurate than many peoples math.




Velocity is an optimistic measure. An early objective is to have a predictable team.

Velocity may be a good predictor of release duration. Yet it is always an optimistic predictor.




Variance Graphed: Pessimistic projection (red line) & optimistic projection (green line) of release duration.



While in the realm of fabrication of information — let’s better describe the summary average with it’s variance.








Categories: Blogs

Introducing Axosoft Version 17.1

About SCRUM - Hamid Shojaee Axosoft - Fri, 04/14/2017 - 16:00

Some software releases have big, visual changes that you see the very moment you open the app. Version 17.0 of Axosoft was one of those big ones, with a huge visual overhaul that tidied up the UI, and big improvements to the user experience.

However, version bumps are also often cause for a large amount of development work being applied to complex solutions that are designed to be, at the front end, almost invisible. These feature sets are in place to remove friction, make you notice the app less, and so you can spend less time doing things.

Axosoft version 17.1 is one such release. In this release, not only have we fixed a bunch of smaller issues that some users on previous versions were experiencing, but we’ve continued the tradition of introducing subtle, elegant solutions to “quality of life” issues that have, until now, made certain repeated tasks less efficient than they could have been.

Version 17.1 has several marked interaction improvements that will soon become so commonplace in your day-to-day use of Axosoft, you’ll forget they’re there at all. So, what’s new?

Fuzzy Finding Duplicates Before You Duplicate Them

Collaborating on projects and releases can create duplication. For example, more than one person might create a task that has been discussed communally. In an effort to reduce the likelihood of the same item being created twice, Axosoft now has a fuzzy finder style drop down to show you existing items in your account that match or share similar names to the item name you are typing.

You can still create the new item as you did before, but if you happen to notice an existing item that you’d like to view or edit, simply select it from the drop-down. Cutting down on duplicated items means less confusion across your team.

Renaming Email Accounts

A lot of users have requested the ability to rename email accounts to something a little more friendly than ihatejira4353234@hotmail.com.

As an admin, simply go to Manage Account > Other Settings > Email Accounts. Open the account whose name you wish to change, and in Account Settings, use the Account Name field to edit the name to whatever you want. Simple!

You Literally Come First

When editing the Assigned To field, there’s a fairly good chance you’ll want to assign yourself to that item, so that’s a pretty reasonable default, right? When creating an item in v17.1, you will now appear at the top of the list of users. Typing another name will narrow down the options as before.

Other Improvements Reports

When exporting a report, you can now include a new field: Parent Item. This allows you to see more easily where sub-items sit in your projects.

Email

In your email lists, you can now filter by emails that are auto-reply emails. Simply click the gear icon in the top-right of the email list, and then select Email > Is Auto Reply filter.

You can also now view the size of attachments for an email, so you know just how large they are.

We hope you enjoy using these new features in version 17.1. As always, this release brings a bunch of other improvements and fixes to the app, and you can see the full list in the 17.1 version history.

Categories: Companies

Team Size Matters, Reprise

Johanna Rothman - Thu, 04/13/2017 - 18:47

Several years ago, I wrote a post for a different blog called “Why Team Size Matters.” That post is long gone. I explained that the number of communication paths in the team does not increase linearly as the team size increases;  team communication paths square when the team increases linearly. Here is the calculation where N is the number of people on the team: Communication Paths=(N*N-N)/2. 

  • 4 people, (16-4)/2=6
  • 5 people, (25-5)/2=10
  • 6 people, (36-6)/2=15
  • 7 people, (49-7)/2=21
  • 8 people, (56-8)/2=24
  • 9 people, (81-9)/2=36
  • 10 people (100-10)/2=45

Here’s why the number of communication paths matter: we need to be able to depend on our team members to deliver. Often, that means we need to understand how they work. The more communication paths, the more the team might have trouble understanding who is doing what and when.

When team members pair, swarm, or mob, they have frequent interconnection points. By working together, they reduce the number of necessary communication paths. Maybe you can have a larger team if the team mobs. (I bet you don’t need a larger team then

Categories: Blogs

Multiple Views of Truth are Perceptions

These are a few of the images that resonate with me. For me they are very close to a door of perception. Now I've never done a mescaline trip, so perhaps I've no clue to what a door frame of perception even looks like... but these images are pretty good with a few beers and some colleagues to discuss there deep meaning and what truth is. Would we even know the truth if it walked up and slapped our face?


Translated: "This is not a pipe"

Cover image of book: Godel Escher Bach

This is Truth; while this and that are true
In any article I write that mentions a door of perception - I would be remise if I didn't mention one of my all time favorite poets and musical group - Jim Morrison and the Doors.  Now do you know that the band is named for?


Aldous Huxley's The Doors of Perception
"Huxley concludes that mescaline is not enlightenment or the Beatific vision, but a "gratuitous grace" (a term taken from Thomas Aquinas' Summa Theologica).[50] It is not necessary but helpful, especially so for the intellectual, who can become the victim of words and symbols. Although systematic reasoning is important, direct perception has intrinsic value too. Finally, Huxley maintains that the person who has this experience will be transformed for the better."
See Also:

Godel Escher Bach An Eternal Golden Braid by Douglas Hofstadter
This Is Not a Pipe by Michel Foucault
Art of Rene Magritte
Categories: Blogs

Deprecating the old Help Desk portal

TargetProcess - Edge of Chaos Blog - Tue, 04/11/2017 - 22:21

We released our Help Desk portal back in 2008. It was a great software that allowed external users to submit requests. Years passed, and it became more and more obsolete from both the technical and user perspectives. Rather than wade through technical debt to try and improve it, we released a separate Service Desk application that already has all the functionality of Help Desk, a better UI, and some cool new features such as custom fields and request types.

We probably should have dropped the old Help Desk back in December 2016, when Service Desk was officially out of beta. It's hard to do, since we sort of got attached to it over the years. Nothing lasts forever though, especially in the software business, so it's time to let it go. Apart from the infrastructure costs of hosting both versions of the software, we also have to maintain and update it to keep up with the latest changes in Targetprocess. For example, in our latest release (v.3.11.0) there were some changes to the way user information is stored, and the 'Forgot Password' button stopped working in Help Desk.

We cannot afford to lose focus at this point, so we are freezing the Help Desk and will completely remove it from our On-Demand servers on June 1st, 2017. What does this mean for you? Most likely, nothing new. If you're not using request management, or if you're already using Service Desk, you don't have to do anything. In case you're not sure, here's what Service Desk looks like:

service_desk_plan

If you are still using Help Desk, that means you will have to switch to Service Desk. All you need to do is activate it at Settings -> Service Desk, and all of your requests and projects will automatically transfer over. On-Premises customers can technically continue using the old Help Desk, though we do not see any good reason for it.

We hope you enjoy the new version of the software. If you have any reason you prefer the old one, please let us know.

Farewell, Help Desk. It's time to move on.

Categories: Companies

Scrum Knowledge Sharing

SpiraPlan is a agile project management system designed specifically for methodologies such as scrum, XP and Kanban.