Creative problem solving for IT

January 27, 2010

If I consider creative problem solving Iwould usually think about tree hugging, and weird techniques to be at one with the universe. It doesn’t seem to fit well with my idea of IT problems which need engineering solutions. I have, however, found that the use of such techniques will often lead to a better overall solution than simply digging into the technical detail. Read the rest of this entry »


A quick look at CMMi

January 13, 2010

I was recently talking to a client was concerned about the development processes used within their organisation. This is a challenge that has been tackled by many organisations and one which the Software Engineering Institute looked at years ago and produced their Capability Maturity Model (CMM) to help with.  I stated that I would find and send them a summary article to help. The challenge really started at that point. Read the rest of this entry »


Being a problem solver…

December 1, 2009

I ran into this article recently:

How to be a Problem Solver
http://www.digitaltonto.com/2009/how-to-be-a-problem-solver/

Read the rest of this entry »


Should you be looking at clouds?

November 12, 2009

The promise of cloud computing is the ability to scale to meet any demand level almost instantly, saving money along the way by only ever needing the power available that is required now. To do this it uses a combination of virtualisation and grid-based clustering technology. The potential is enormous. To spice it up further then by using a platform such as Gigaspace it is possible to improve performance and scalability to a degree that thousands of transactions a second are possible, based on in-memory database technology. Read the rest of this entry »


Assurance and turn-around

November 10, 2009

I was recently asked to comment on the concepts of project assurance, solution assurance and turn-around. The following is a summary of my response. Read the rest of this entry »


Gartner's top 10 strategic technologies

October 27, 2009

Gartner is trying to help us all out with our strategy again, or maybe this is an early “next year prediction” article. Either way Gartner’s top 10 strategic technologies have been published: here. To be honest, my biggest surprise is that there isn’t something newer in here. They seem to have selected only technologies that are relatively mature, and some of them are what I would consider to be positively mainstream. I suppose that in recommending strategy to major corporate customers they are not going to select technology on the bleeding edge. This selection is more “look what you should have been doing this year” than “get on this band wagon now”.


Project Estimation Model Example

October 15, 2009

As a means for discussing the model I will follow through an example of the model being used. To do this the needs to be an example usage scenario. In this case I have chosen to use the following:

“A banking web site has retail and corporate clients, and well as a set of automated processes that must be completed overnight in the bank’s overnight batch window. The site has a standard Java web architecture, with the batch processes being initiated using a batch process at the application server. The purpose behind the model is to examine the capacity required in the major system components, and to make ensure the ongoing capability of the host systems for the site.”

If you have followed through the performance model series (here), you will note that this is exactly the same scenario. I have chosen this in order to be able to compare and contrast the application of the performance and project estimation models. There are clear differences in approach that need to be considered. For those that like to skip to the end I have provided a copy of the final estimation example filled out here:

Estimation project estimate