Presenters announced

 

Keynotes and invited speakers

 

Kent Beck: Managing by the ‘Book: Ten Improbable Policies that Conquered the World

How did Facebook seize the social networking opportunity when others fumbled it? One of the many factors that had to go right was that engineering had to keep up with unprecedented, unpredictable, explosive growth. The secret sauce that helped the geeks keep up isn’t so secret: everyone takes personal responsibility for the entire system. Instead of making up for a lack of responsibility, Facebook’s engineering policies foster and exploit personal responsibility. The talk presents the thinking behind ten of these policies that contradict conventional wisdom.

Kent Beck

Kent Beck has been at Facebook for four years, during which he has worked on privacy, messaging infrastructure, and coaching for promising engineers. Before that he was a pioneer in patterns for software, Extreme Programming, Test-Driven Development, and the xUnit family of testing frameworks. His research includes syntax-tree-based development tools and the quantitative study of software design and software process. He lives in southern Oregon with his wife of thirty years and the youngest of his five children, raising goats and making cheese.

 

Rebecca Parsons: Agile Is Not the Easy Way Out

While Agile is not the easiest way to develop software, it is the easiest and best way to develop good software effectively.  There are three aspects of Agility that make it hard: the rigor involved in the practice of Agile, the support for sustainability that is achieved through the practice of Agile, and the extent to which Agile forces us to deal with the world as it is, rather than deceiving ourselves about how things might be.  When I say the practice of Agile, I don't just mean agile practices.  Rather, I view Agile initially through the principles, which give rise to various practices applicable in different contexts.  This talk explores these three perspectives on Agile software development and demonstrates why the various Agile practices, while not the easy way out, are indeed effective in both the short term and, perhaps more importantly, in the long term. 

 

 

Dr. Rebecca Parsons is ThoughtWorks’ Chief Technology Officer. She has more than 20 years’ application development experience, in industries ranging from telecommunications to emergent internet services. Rebecca has published in both language and artificial intelligence publications, served on numerous program committees, and reviews for several journals. She has extensive experience leading in the creation of large-scale distributed object applications and the integration of disparate systems

Aslam Khan: A little less kool-aid and little more focus

I am part of this software development community for just over the last 20 years and at least half of that in the agile community.  In this time, I have had the privilege of being involved quite closely with many companies' agile "experiments".  About 3 years ago I started reflecting on what we have achieved, and similarities over the years and across companies.  This reflection caused me to change focus dramatically.

The reflection left me perplexed with several aspects that range from scalability to pop-psychology, with code, process and (lack of) humanity squeezed in-between.  It crosses over into the state of software development as a sector in the global economy, the kool-aid we pedal and the reality of the enormity of the problem we face in (South) Africa.

In this talk I will share my insights, observations and opinions on what it takes for us to be globally competitive with agile software development as one of the enablers.

 

 

Aslam has been building software for long enough to make peace with the fact that software design is ridiculously difficult. After 20 odd years, he still finds a way to work at the extremes - lines of code and strategy. Most teams he works with will tell of his off the wall experiments in agile software development. In between, he is writing the book Grokking Functional Programming. And when he doesn't have enough to do, he blogs at http://f3yourmind.net. Mostly though, he is focused on software development that is centred on the enhancing and appreciating the humanity in all of us.

Paul E McMahon: Enough About Processes: Let’s Use Patterns

When new developers and testers join the company, we want them to learn the “way we do software here.” So we give them the “stone tablets”?the volumes of process documentation? to study. However, the problem is that the details in this documentation are primarily for beginners and don’t give practitioners what they need to perform at a high level. Paul McMahon has found a better way to achieve and sustain high performance—by focusing on common patterns that repeat in organizations to help practitioners make better decisions. Join Paul as he shares common software development patterns he has observed, questions practitioners should be asking, and tips and warnings to help them make better decisions. Take away practical and easy-to-use techniques to identify and communicate repeating patterns specific to your organization, patterns that can help less experienced practitioners learn faster and consistently perform at a higher level.

 

 

Paul E. McMahon has been an independent consultant for 18 years helping organizations improve their development and management performance. Prior to his independent work Paul acquired twenty-four years of experience as a software developer, project manager and internal company coach working for Link Simulation and Lockheed Martin. He has taught Software Engineering at Binghamton University and published more than 50 articles on software and systems development and management.

Doug Bradbury: The Modern Software Apprenticeship - How to Grow Coding Talent via Mentorship

The demand for talented coders is extremely high throughout the world. Experienced programmers are hard to find and educational institutions are not keeping up with the demand. Even those who do  graduate from a University rarely have the practical skill sets needed to be a professional coder.

How is is possible to build a strong team of skilled coders in this environment?

Doug draws on his 8 years of experience building the apprenticeship program at 8th Light and on centuries of learning in historical craft and trade to explore how you can build a program to teach coders in one of the oldest and best proven methods of education: Apprenticeship 

 

Doug Bradbury is the Director of Software Services for 8th Light in Chicago. He was one of 8th Light’s original Software Craftsmen, and he authored the Manifesto for Software Craftsmanship. Doug helped 8th Light develop and refine its modern apprenticeship program, and has mentored dozens of apprentices into successful software careers. Doug’s interest in social justice and reconciliation has brought him to Africa on a number of occasions. He has met with developers in Kigali, and is excited about exploring more possibilities in programming-based business on the continent.