maiden_taiwan writes: Tech company Vistaprint (my employer) is running a programming contest with a $10,000 (US) prize. The challenge? Creatively compute a shipping box that best holds a set of products. Deadline is end of October. The contest is meant as a fun puzzle (vs. an enterprise-level solution).
maiden_taiwan writes: My company's documents are stored on a big Windows share drive. We'd like to install a simple versioning system to track document history and roll back to previous versions when needed. Unfortunately, our needs are too simple for the marketplace, which pushes Documentum, SharePoint, and other massive, expensive systems that want to "be in charge" and change everybody's work habits. All we want is a simple Windows share drive (CIFS, not WebDAV, which rules out Subversion with autoversioning) that automatically versions documents when saved or on request, scales internationally to thousands of users, and doesn't cost half a million dollars. Is there really nothing out there for Windows? What does your company use?
maiden_taiwan writes: "At my software company, we occasionally need all engineers to adopt a
new standard or "best practice." Some are small, like the use of
Camel Case for function names, while others have tangible business
value, such as "every check-in must be accompanied by a
unit test." As you might guess, some new practices get ignored, not
because people are evil or lazy, but because they're simply too busy
to pay attention and change their work habits. So we are seeking
creative ways to announce, roll out, and enforce
a standard for 100+ engineers so they will actually follow it. We
already know to automate compliance when possible (e.g., the revision
control system could reject check-ins without unit tests), and simple
platitudes like "tie compliance to their year-end bonuses" aren't
helpful by themselves, as someone will still need to check compliance.
The engineers here are smart people, so we
want to spend less time on enforcement (having architects read the
code and flag any nonstandardisms) and more on evangelization (getting
engineers to see the benefits of the standards and want to follow
them). I'd welcome any advice on formal processes or just plain fun ways to
get people's attention."