Highlights from USI 2010 and Lean SSC London

June and July have been busy months. I’d like to share a few highlights from other speakers in USI 2010 in Paris and the Lean Software and Systems gathering in London on which I had the honor of presenting.

Long term sustainable releases with 99% backward compatibility [USI 2010]
In "The challenges of long-term software quality in open source" Jürgen Höller  described how they worked in the Spring team to achieve 99% backward compatibility  by avoiding revolution and using evolution, even when radical new features are fit in. During the last seven years the Spring team have absorbed 4 major JDK’s and 4 generations of J2EE.  I was sure this was possible and Jürgens team shows it is. A challenge to all of us the next time we want to restart from scratch ūüôā

Learning to Learn – becoming a Lean startup [Lean SSC]

In this presentation Damon Morgan shows how they as a company now have reached a level where they continuously do set based engineering of business ideas. He showed using their Quote web page how experimenting with not so obvious changes lead to a jump in business leads. I noted another experience which I have seen –  when you get flow going, estimation is redundant.

Using Kanban to get knowledge and continuously improve [Lean SSC]

Benjamin Mitchell blew me away with his presentation. I had some seriously great laughs ūüôā But there are some serious learnings as well. Benjamin has done some great efforts in experimenting with statistical process control in software. For example, he could demonstrate that a bulk part of the product portfolio wasn’t generating value to cover the complexity it brought by.  But what does help if there isn’t a thinking process in the organization capable of absorbing these learnings? I will highlights his takeaways,  which we all can improve on:

  • THINK for yourself in your context
  • Get KNOWLEDGE by studying your process as a system, end to end from the customer’s point of view
  • RUN EXPERIMENTS  to learn while you work

…  If you have the chance, go see him.:)

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