Archives For Recommended Reading

The Principles of Product Development Flow – Don Reinersten

Get it. Read it. Re-read it.

Kanban – David J. Anderson

My introduction to Kanban. Simple, good case study to get folks started.

Honestly, this was pivotal for the introduction of Kanban to GreenHopper (JIRA Agile). These days it is instrumental in how we approach work at Twitter for teams in Platform and Infrastructure Operations.

Continuous Delivery – Humble, Farley

Once you’ve got continuous integration in place, and if your customers can accept value on an on-going basis, then have a read of Continuous Delivery and take your development to the next level. You’ll get faster feedback and deliver value to customers frequently.

The Phoenix Project – Kim, Behr, Spafford

I love this book. Walks through a fairly common scenario from the not too distant past (or perhaps the present for some companies) and shows how to alleviate the pain through a compelling and enjoyable story. Get it.

Scrum Shortcuts without Cutting Corners – Ilan Goldstein

Great book with all the tips and tricks in a condensed form. Leave it on your desk and pick it up for a quick reference when you need it – or hand them out to your colleagues or new engineering managers to give them the shortcuts too!


What have I missed? Tweet and let me know.

Technology reporter Paul Rubens takes a look at IT failures and why they happen, even in big companies, in his article Why IT failures are unlikely to go away. One comment really frustrated me in that post:

Making the software more reliable would undoubtedly be possible, but to do so the developers would have to invest so much more time and money that the price of the product would end up having to be unacceptably high.


It is a matter of discipline. If the team knows how to do Acceptance Test Driven Development, and they have the discipline to practice that consistently then they cost will not be significantly higher. The problem arises when a product owner does not see the value of good quality today, and instead pushes that off forever until it is someone else’s problem, or it is too hard to fix without a rewrite.

Technical debt is a thing that can be managed. Companies big and small need to have the discipline to manage their technical debt, and to build quality in. Don’t leave it as an after thought.

Anyways, this post is actually about The Phoenix Project, a great great read about how to address the problems described in Rubens post. Pick it up today and have a read over the weekend, honestly it won’t take more than a day to read.

The Phoenix Project is fun as it is a wonderful story that is infused with the theory and practice behind lean. And no doubt you’ll be able to relate to some of the situations that the team encounters.

Perhaps the folks in Rubens article should pick this up. Quality is fixed, we expect high quality, deliver it!

Go get The Phoenix Project today!

There is so much going on on Twitter it may be hard to keep up. You’ve got mates, colleagues, sports teams, musicians, comedians, business leaders and a whole lot more. In this post I’m going to share how I keep on top of all these various groups without feeling overwhelmed.

I use a combination of TweetDeck and Twitter to keep on top of all the cool stuff that is going on around the world. Let’s take a look at how Twitter Lists and TweetDeck can help you do the same!

Twitter Lists

A list is a curated group of Twitter users. You can create your own lists or subscribe to lists created by others. Viewing a list timeline will show you a stream of Tweets from only the users on that list.

Using Twitter Lists

So, Twitter Lists allow me to group people around topics of interest. For instance, here are some of my favourite lists:

You can subscribe to the Lists above or create your own. Find all my lists here.

Okay, now you’ve got some Lists, how do you keep on top of them? Enter TweetDeck…


TweetDeck is another Twitter product, built by some fine folks over in London. If you don’t already have an account get started now.

This piece is really easy, all you do is add columns for your Lists. Click the + button in the lower left and select Lists:

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You can then select one of your lists, or one that you have subscribed to:

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Then just press the Add Column button:

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And voila!

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Like this? Let me know: