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Comment Not a methodology problem (Score 1) 349

No development methodology or project management style is going to help you if: 1) people are not telling the truth about their progress and 2) the project has numerous stakeholders (or a revolving door of stakeholders) with conflicting goals pulling the project in different directions.

From the article:
"[...] back in September they were telling us everything was great then too: so either they were lying then or they are lying now or they have been lying all along"

From another article:
"The senior management responsible for delivering the programme has also undergone a significant overhaul in recent months, with UC programme director Hilary Reynolds being the latest figure to be taken off the project after just four months in the role."

"[...] esponsibility for the framework is now being moved to the Government Procurement Service – as we've always said it would."

Comment Read only (Score 1) 402

Modify access? Absolutely not. Read access? Yes.

Because who is management going to run to at 3:00 in the morning when something isn't working? Not the system administrator - the developer. Let them see the logs. Let them see what files/versions/timestamps were deployed. Let them see what else is running on the box. And let them do it without giving instructions over the phone to some admin who is sharing their console over GoToMeeting or something. Or this is going to take all freaking night.

As a side note, how many times has a developer been dragged in to troubleshoot why "their program quit working" only to find that the real problem was something like OS updates were applied without being tested, or a new virus scanner was installed, or system X was installed on the same box?

Comment Re:Programming job bad reputation (Score 1) 742

I'm 40 years old. It was obvious to me from the beginning (even before college) that being a programmer meant being on a treadmill of continous learning and "keeping up". That was actually part of the appeal - it was never going to get boring. Always something new to learn and figure out. I know people who do treat it as a "job". They've been COBOL programmers for who knows how many decades, working on the same accounting and payroll systems. Yuck.

I also understood early on that ANY salary position means you'll be expected to get the job done regardless of how many hours it takes - you don't punch a clock when you're salary. There is nothing about that peculiar to programming or IT. And unless you want to get into management, very few companies know how to create a decent career path for technical people of ANY kind. My brother is an electrician and is facing the same thing - he can either manage other electricians or continue to climb the electrical polls himself. He became an electrician because he enjoys doing the eletrical work, not because he was following a career path. Same for me and programming.

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PL/I -- "the fatal disease" -- belongs more to the problem set than to the solution set. -- Edsger W. Dijkstra, SIGPLAN Notices, Volume 17, Number 5