Slides from Team and Monoliths talk at Velocity Conf EU, Amsterdam, 7 Nov

I gave a talk at Velocity Conference Europe 2016 called How to break apart a monolithic system safely without destroying your team based on work we have done at Skelton Thatcher Consulting over the past few years with various organisations.

Slides:

The slides are on Slideshare at http://www.slideshare.net/SkeltonThatcher/teams-and-monoliths-matthew-skelton-velocity-eu-2016 and the video of the talk will be online soon.

The main take-aways from the talk are:

  • Recognise that by starting with the needs of the team, we can avoid cognitive overload, thereby making future development more sustainable
  • Understand the type of monolith you are dealing with (there are many kinds of monolith)
  • Consider using Code Forensics (see Your Code as a Crime Scene)
  • Find the natural ‘fracture planes’ in your code and work with these
  • Instrument the monolith before splitting it up
  • Understand data flows and fault responses
  • Split off one segment of code at a time, considering the cognitive load for the team

There is quite a bit more in the talk itself, including the effect of Conway’s Law, the benefits of monoliths, and real-world examples from client engagements.

teams-and-monoliths-summary

A big thanks from me to the organisers of VelocityConf for their hard work, to the audience in my talk for some excellent questions, and to the speaker selection panel for choosing my talk (!).

Why and How to Test Logging – InfoQ article

 

Modern log aggregation & search tools provide significant new capabilities for teams building, testing, and running software systems. By treating logging as a core system component, and using techniques such as unique event IDs, transaction tracing, and structured log output, we gain rich insights into application behaviour and health, especially cross-component visibility. In this article on InfoQ – co-authored with my colleague Manuel Pais – we explain why it is valuable to test aspects of logging and how to do this with modern log aggregation tooling. This approach makes logging a channel or vector to make distributed systems more testable.

InfoQ: Why and How to Test Logging by Matthew Skelton and Manuel Pais

Bonus: check out these slides from a talk I gave at Testing Showcase North in February 2016 on Why and how to test logging

 

Helping to expand Code Club with Build Quality In

We’re really happy to be able to support Code Club in this way through the Build Quality In book.

Build Quality In

Code Club does fantastic work with young people in the UK and around the world, helping 9-11 year olds to get to grips with writing and running software. We’re very proud to support the work of Code Club; the majority of the royalties from Build Quality In (70%) go to support Code Club.

codeclub-logo

So we were thrilled to get this wonderful message from Code Club:

Dear Steve and Matthew,

I’m Kate, the Partnerships Manager for the Raspberry Pi Foundation, of which Code Club is a key educational programme. I wanted to get in touch and thank you both for your continued support of Code Club back via the sales of Build Quality In on Leanpub.

The monthly donation we receive as part of your sales helps us continue to provide and improve our sector-leading curriculum, train and support volunteers and ultimately put digital making in the hands of as many…

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Dan North – keynote speaker for PIPELINE 2017

So great to have Dan speaking at PIPELINE Conf 2017!

PIPELINE

We are delighted to announce that Dan North will be our keynote speaker for PIPELINE 2017!

dan-north

Dan North uses his deep technical and organisational knowledge to help CIOs, business and software teams to deliver quickly and successfully. He puts people first and finds simple, pragmatic solutions to business and technical problems, often using lean and agile techniques. With over twenty years of experience in IT, Dan is a frequent speaker at technology conferences worldwide. The originator of Behaviour-Driven Development (BDD) and Deliberate Discovery, Dan has published feature articles in numerous software and business publications, and contributed to The RSpec Book: Behaviour Driven Development with RSpec, Cucumber, and Friends and 97 Things Every Programmer Should Know: Collective Wisdom from the Experts. He occasionally blogs at http://dannorth.net/blog.

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How and why to run internal tech conferences – InfoQ article

In an environment of rapidly-changing technology and approaches, an internal tech conference can be a powerful and effective way of spreading new ideas and practices and sharing learning & experience. Having organised and run several internal tech conferences (at different organisations), Victoria Morgan-Smith and I decided to write about our experiences in an article for InfoQ: Internal Tech Conferences – How and Why. We also interviewed several other people from various organisations who have also run internal tech conferences in order to give a broader perspective.

Our aim was to inspire and enable other people to develop and run internal tech conferences in their own organisations, building on the experiences of the teams and organisations in the article.

In this article we draw on our personal experience of running internal tech events at companies we’ve worked with, along with reflections and advice from people at Paddy Power Betfair, Callcredit Information Group, ING and others. You’ll find further reading & listening material at the end of the article – there is so much inspirational work happening in so many organisations.

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Key points from the article are:

  • Software engineering today is as much about people as the technology itself: an internal tech conference can give a huge boost to your organisation’s social capital – that currency by which relationships flourish.
  • The format you choose for your internal tech conference depends on what you want to achieve from it: it can be “by the people for the people”, or a showcase to celebrate achievement. You can keep the audience or speakers to just a single department, or invite other divisions, or even invite external speakers and/or audience.
  • Making the event a success takes effort: choose your speakers well, and mentor themas they prepare their talks. Work on the logistics – it’s the little things that count.
  • Remember to have fun: ‘death by PowerPoint’ will mean people remember the event for the wrong reasons!
  • Follow through: for a lasting impact, keep sight of the outcomes you seek and be ready to work with others to keep the momentum going.

We hope that the article is useful for people thinking of running or improving their own internal tech conferences!

Thanks to everyone involved: people we interviewed, the amazing InfoQ team, and to my co-author Victoria Morgan-Smith.

Printed copies of Continuous Delivery with Windows and .NET

Continuous Delivery with Windows and .NET

Over 100 printed copies of Continuous Delivery with Windows and .NET were taken recently at WinOps Conference in London. Sorry we did not have to sign them all – they went so quickly!

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If you’d like a printed copy of the book, please let us know via the Feedback page – we will try to get you a copy from O’Reilly!

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Book signings – PIPELINE Conf and WinOps 2016

Continuous Delivery with Windows and .NET

We’re excited that publishers O’Reilly will have bookstands at both PIPELINE Conference and WinOps and they’re bringing some printed copies of Continuous Delivery with Windows and .NET! We (Chris O’Dell and Matthew Skelton) will be around at both events to sign copies of the report – get yours before they are gone!

Some O'Reilly books

Buy tickets here:

Thanks again to the team O’Reilly for all their support.

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