Agile programming (was Re: [P|C] Banksel)
Nate Duehr email (remove spam text)
On Jan 29, 2009, at 12:18 AM, Vitaliy wrote:
> You say the Agile team was "sequestered", do you mean that before
> you were
> all in the same room? That's actually what agilists recommend:
> instead of
> every programmer having their own office, they should work as close
> as possible, preferably in a "bullpen" environment. The goal is to
> the cost of interaction.
There's at least one software business owner who wholeheartedly
disagrees with the "bullpen" approach. Have you read "Joel on
He posted this to his blog on January 13th as supporting evidence:
I'm in "tech support" and since about 1994 have worked in "bullpen"
environments. I've adapted, but I dislike them.
I'm not as productive listening to all the crap that's not my
responsibility going on around me, so I've developed a very good
ability to ignore everything. Sometimes when co-workers walk up and
just want to chat, they marvel at the fact that I don't even know (nor
care) that they're behind me, even if they address me. My DSP filter
in my brain keeps them below consciousness level unless it senses that
they are asking something work related. It also perks me up if I hear
similar bugs/problems to new ones I'm working coming from a nearby desk.
But otherwise, I'd rather have a closed door and quiet. I'd be more
productive. I'm ALWAYS more productive when weather or other
circumstances have me working from (a quiet) home. (If my wife's
home, my productivity goes in the toilet, unless I excuse myself and
go to another room on another floor of the house.)
And back waaaay back when I worked for Texaco, I had one... a desk and
a door that could be closed. I miss that. I was just a peon "college
summer hire" and I had a real office.
Interestingly, I started noticing how often the modular furniture is
re-arranged and talked a bit with the facilities people about how much
that costs to bring in electricians, re-wire the data cabling, etc.
Not long after, I read an article that debunked the myth that modular
furniture is "cheaper", since managers always seem to want to re-
arrange it every year or so. Drywall and doors and a floor plan that
doesn't move, is actually cheaper in the long run. I then talked
about this with facilities and they agreed... no moves/changes would
have saved our company tens of thousands a year...
Oh well. Sometimes common sense isn't so common, I guess.
The last time we had to move the modular furniture, they made it
taller -- now we regularly see people doing dangerous and stupid
things to talk to co-workers on the other side. I just dial their
extension and if they don't answer, leave a message.
The most AWESOME piece of equipment I have is my wireless headset. We
all have them, they don't seem to ever interfere with one another,
they cost over $300 a pop, and they're the best thing for a tech
support team since sliced bread. I will probably buy my own for work,
if I ever leave the company, it's that useful. Any tech support
manager who balks when their staff asks for them because of the cost,
should have their head examined. I'd rather have a slower PC, or any
number of other things taken away, before I would drop the cordless
headset from GNI Netcom.
In reply to: <CCC68380B44847F2B49ED044669809A8@ws11>
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