Methods & Tools - May 2022
Sharing global software development expertise since 1993


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*** Updates ***


Last Articles Published on Methods & Tools Website

scrumlr.io - Engaging retrospective meetings scrumlr.io is an open source tool that enables and assists Scrum masters, moderators and Agile coaches around the world to host efficient and engaging collaborative remote meetings and interactive formats. With scrumlr.io, you can especially host versatile and effective retrospective meetings without spending much time to get everyone started. Read more...


*** From The Archives ***


Articles from Methods & Tools' Archives

Eradicating Load Testing Errors - Part 1: Correlation Errors You just installed a new load testing tool and are very excited to start testing the performance of your web application. You selected this tool because its training video showed how easy it is to use. Just navigate through a test scenario while the tool records it. Then the tool will emulate real world impact on the server infrastructure by replaying this scenario with as many virtual users (VUs) as you need and monitor how well your application performs under load. While this may seem pretty simple, testing may not go as you planned. The website under test can refuse to cooperate with the VUs. Errors may be thrown or functionality may seem to be broken. This means you are likely dealing with a correlation issue. Read more...


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*** Quote of the Month ***


No, engineers don’t suck at time estimates – and generally speaking humans are better estimators than what most people believe. This seems rather surprising given all we’ve heard about the problems of bad time estimations, projects going overboard, etc and of course, your personal experience with software time estimates. But if people are really bad at estimation, how does that fit with our obvious evolutionary need to make quick decisions based on partial data? if we can’t estimate well how did we decide if a gap is wide enough to jump over, if an animal is worth the hunt, if a certain area is more likely to have water and shade? Without estimation skills we wouldn’t survive. So what’s going on?

One obvious explanation is that we are only good at estimating physical things such as sizes and distances. However, this does not seem likely given the large number of non-physical decisions we needed to make, like selecting a mate. Another, more likely explanation is that the estimates are good, but the interpretation and usage of the estimates is flawed. In other (slightly cynical) words: the engineers are good at estimating, it’s the project managers who suck at using the estimates.

Source: No, engineers don’t suck at time estimates, Avishai Ish-Shalom, https://blog.nukemberg.com/post/no-engineers-dont-suck-at-estimates/


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*** Software Development Linkopedia ***


Website: Merit is a free platform that promote mentoring in the software development area.

Text: An Engineering Team where Everyone is a Leader When I moved from engineering to engineering management, I wanted to build a team where everyone can be a leader – and everyone would act as an owner. A group where every member has the skills, confidence, and empowerment to take initiative, make decisions, and lead others. Where, when people saw problems, they would think, “let me take the lead in solving this issue.” I wanted to do this because I believed it would lead to better execution, faster professional growth, and people staying with the team longer.
Text: Improving your bottom line with the Four Key Metrics “Measures shouldn’t become our goals”, commonplace and sound advice when it comes to metrics. But what if there was a set of metrics that accurately captures how well your software team is delivering? And that this set of four key metrics can help drive effective behaviors and practices that will improve the performance of your software team, and ultimately your bottom line?
Text: Quick risk strategizing People often ask me about good ways to devise a test strategy for a new epic or feature. Like many practitioners, I find a risk-based approach works well. The teams who did risk storming sessions later reported that the sessions helped them think of risks they might not have otherwise, and come up with creative ways to mitigate that risk. It also helps them choose some of the most important risks upon which to focus.
Text: The Importance Of Psychological Safety In Agile Teams Chances are, you’ve found yourself in a situation in which some members of your team don’t feel comfortable sharing what they truly feel, either with each other or with leadership. This type of discomfort can be caused by any number of factors: fear that the supervisor or leader will penalize people who speak up; concern over getting humiliated in front of others; and other unfortunate causes.
Text: CUPID – for joyful coding What started as lighthearted iconoclasm, poking at the bear of SOLID, has developed into something more concrete and tangible. If I do not think the SOLID principles are useful these days, then what would I replace them with? Can any set of principles hold for all software? What do we even mean by principles? I believe that there are properties or characteristics of software that make it a joy to work with. The more your code has these qualities, the more joyful it is to work with; but everything is a tradeoff, so you should always consider your context.
Text: ‘early Model Based testing’ (eMBT) – An early model based exploratory testing approach in practice ‘early Model Based Testing’ (eMBT) is a software testing approach that aims to optimize the test case design phase. This is achieved by stimulating communication and collaboration between all project stakeholders to get early feedback and a shared understanding of the requirements in an early stage of the software development life cycle.
Text: 5 Things to Avoid in your Retros Continuous improvement is one of the main concept of Agile and retrospectives is a technique used by Scrum team to achieve it. This article shares five situations that Scrum teams should avoid in their retrospectives.

Video: Free Your Remote Team For High Performance Agile, Scrum, DevOps, Lean, Spotify squads and Scaled Agile were built on high contact team interactions leading to extraordinary performance, then Covid came and disrupted our models of face-to-face interactions. Remote and hybrid models are our present and future for software development project teams. As a team member, manager, leader, intrapreneur and change evangelist, do you know how to empower remote team communication to capture room intelligence? Or are your remote interactions basic, excruciating and lack results?
Video: Automate Machine Learning with Continuous Integration Machine learning (ML)is maturing as a discipline: now that it is trivially easy to create and train models, it has never been more challenging to manage the complexity of experiments, changing datasets, and the demands of a full-stack project. This talk examines why one of the staples of DevOps, continuous integration, has been so challenging to implement in ML projects so far and how it can be done using open-source tools like Git, GitHub Actions, and DVC (Data Version Control)
Video: Model Based Engineering with the Architecture Analysis and Design Language (AADL) The Architecture Analysis and Design Language (AADL) is an SAE international standard that addresses these issues by defining guidelines for design and analysis through a Domain-Specific Modeling Language (DSML). AADL captures large designs through high-level architectural concepts built after domain expertise: component categories that describe key building blocks, such as processor, devices, threads, and rules to assemble them. Through careful abstractions, complex designs can be captured as smaller models amenable to inspection and analysis.
Video: Helping Scrum Teams Get Back To Normal The world has changed and coaches have a significant role in helping clients and their Agile organizations adjust to the post-lockdown world. This presentation explains how to help overcome the twin problems of survivor syndrome and resulting imposter syndrome.

Tools: Healenium improves stability of Selenium-based test cases, handling changes of updated web elements. Selenium tests are often difficult to maintain due to instability. Self-healing test automation with Healenium fixes the traditional problems that teams face when adopting Selenium. The result: stable and smart Selenium testing with less effort
Tools: New Relic CodeStream is a free open-source extension for VS Code, Visual Studio, and JetBrains. CodeStream supercharges development workflows by putting collaboration tools in your IDE. It supports pull requests from GitHub, BitBucket and GitLab, issue management from Jira, Trello, Asana and 9 others, observability from New Relic One and Pixie, and provides code discussion that ties it all together, integrated with Slack, MS Teams, email, and in-editor notifications. Understand, review, and write code faster with CodeStream. Get answers as easy as “select the code, type your question.” Save institutional knowledge where it belongs: with your source code.
Tools: Using Commercial Scrum Tools for Free If the development of open source Scrum tools was in vogue some years ago, a lot of these projects have now been abandoned. Some are still active, but this is because their development is sponsored by a commercial hosted option. There is however an alternative to manage your Agile software development projects if you have a low budget… and a small team. Some providers of commercial Scrum tools provide a free version of their software, often with some limitations.


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