Jan
9
5:30 PM17:30

Roundtable: What the [bleep] does 'Agile' mean?

Facilitated (refereed?) by Dave Nave

Think of the customers most in need of our services. If they understood more of what we offer, they would already do it.  They don't and call for help.  Waves of process improvement champions respond, with competing proposals that use identical terms to mean different things and different terms to mean the same thing.  "Agile" is one. The confusion leaves the potential customer unprepared to select from our strategies, as unprepared as a boy scout flag football coach is to slow down a NFL offense.  Or like a lonely seaside sergeant in foxhole who is to stop the Marine Corps from landing on his beach. And this is before we throw any Japanese and Welsh terms at the customer!  We have our code words, just like the NFL offense or the Marines. Some code words simplify understanding, others prevent it.  Many do both. A confused customer controls the cash, can prevent our sale, reject the value we offer and remain in need of our services.

Let's see if we can compare and clarify basic strategic flavors of software process improvement strategies, terms and advantages, relationships, maybe even nuances and implications.  This drives us toward the fundamentals our customer can experience. Still, in this short evening of conversation, oversimplification is the reality we will have to accept, even while hearing passionately expressed beliefs.

Dave Nave

Dave Nave is an experienced Management Engineer with notable process improvement success. In 2002 he published a comparison of three improvement methodologies that is being referenced to this day. He is eager to hear agile described in common terms, sans those 'TM' words.  While asking local groups, Dave found spirited discussions about defining Agile, even as we sell what sounds like the same thing. He knows we are onto something important, but prefers it explained in a more basic business management language.

Dave brings to the discussion an eight-column table of seven improvement methodologies, compared on eleven categories. The eighth column is blank, except for the title: "Agile".

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Dec
5
5:30 PM17:30

Packing for an Agile Software Release: A Hiker's Guide

Presented by Dawn Hemminger

Slides from the Presentation

Intimidated by planning an Agile software release for your team? Don't be! Rest easy and use the same steps I use when planning for a release. Think of it like planning for a hiking adventure with friends! We will ORGANIZE our gear, SCHEDULE our trip, PLAN for the future by learning from our history, PACK our bags, and GO! Then we'll SHARE our own personal experiences, as I hope to learn from you! So whether you're a novice or a pro, you'll gain tips and techniques to plan your next Agile software release. Let's share in this adventure together.   

Dawn Hemminger

Dawn Hemminger is an Agile Software Release Manager and Certified Scrum Master (CSM) at the University of Washington (UW). She brings 20+ years of engineering leadership, systems service, training and quality assurance expertise in the aeronautical and software industry as well as 10+ years working as a community organizer and workshop leader. Her unique and diverse background in both the private and public sector demonstrates her strengths and accomplishments in planning, coaching, transparency, collaboration and implementation. She has a proven track record of building great teams and guides them to success. Most recently, she managed UW’s Enterprise Integration Platform (EIP) team to launch the enterprise HR system to campus. When not evangelizing Agile and Lean practices, you can find Dawn hiking the beautiful trails of the Pacific Northwest. She currently resides in the historic Ballard neighborhood of Seattle, WA. 

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Nov
7
5:30 PM17:30

November 7th: How to Measure User Sentiment to Prioritize Your Product Backlog

Presented by Peter Moon

Slides from the presentation

How do you fit ten pounds of software development into a five-pound bag? Prioritizing your backlog just might be the single most important decision software development teams can make. It sounds simple – work on the things that will deliver the most value. But which stories, features, and requirements, exactly, meet the criteria? Should we optimize for durability? Flexibility? Simplicity? Modern experiences? Breakthrough features? Resilience?

Ultimately, great products deliver great experiences for real people. Measuring how users feel about the product, even before it’s built, can drive alignment among stakeholders, focus teams on the right work, encourage creativity and autonomy, and increase collaboration. Net Promoter Score measures advocacy. NSAT measures satisfaction. Scraping social media can give you some insights for the portion of your users who express themselves there. Peter will illustrate the mechanics of an alternative approach to measuring sentiment and how to use those metrics to focus your backlog on the things that are most important.

“Life is too short to build something nobody wants.” – Ash Maurya

Peter Moon

Peter Moon is a Managing Partner at Navicet, a design consultancy that helps teams develop design capabilities into a competitive advantage. Peter has over 30 years of commercial software design and IT management experience. He is a 13-year veteran of Microsoft and held such positions as Director of Tools for North America Services, Engineering PUM, Quality Director, and Consulting Engagement Manager where he drove some of the largest services engagements in North America. While at Microsoft, Peter developed new practices for IT software design and drove global adoption for over 10,000 IT pros. He has been a speaker at numerous industry conferences, has coached hundreds of teams to achieve better business results through proven practices in design, requirements, risk and project management and has served on Microsoft IT’s Architectural and Standards review boards. Peter launched Navicet with a group of like-minded practitioners in 2014 to serve customers in the Puget Sound area who believe in the power of design to transform business.

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Oct
3
5:30 PM17:30

October 3rd: Why Isn't Lean/Agile/Scrum/Devops the Way We All Work and What Comes Next?

Presented by Adam Yuret

Slides from the presentation

The Agile Manifesto was written by petulant contract software developers at a ski resort almost 17 years ago. It launched a movement and an industry to change the world. Nearly two decades later the world is not dramatically different than it was in 2001. Let’s talk about why and what’s next.

Adam Yuret

Adam is an Exec Consultant, Portfolio/Program, and Systems Thinker at Context-driven Agility Consulting.  He has over 14 years of experience working in commercial and non-profit software engineering. 

Context Driven Agility is how Adam helps organizations achieve big-picture alignment in order to help grow what he calls "humanistic lean flow-based systems" which means synthesizing the leading ideas in lean portfolio prioritization and evolutionary approaches like Kanban to not only help organizations better understand the complexities inherent in human systems but empowering teams to solve them, collaboratively. 

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Sep
5
5:30 PM17:30

September 5th: Agile Product Management

Presented by Luniel de Beer

Agile Product Management is the key realizing business value faster with predictability, sustainability and high quality. Yet many organizations are still operating with a mixed collection of Agile and outdated traditional techniques, focused mainly on agile project and development task management.  This is not their fault because as an industry we’ve led them to believe that if they do this, everything else will become apparent and we can fix it.  

What has become apparent is that we need to pay attention to product management instead, not in the project management sense, but in the business value realization sense.  Learning from Business Architecture and Behavior Driven Development, while paying attention to goals and decision-making responsibilities for the purpose of role definition and responsibility scaling, seems to provide the first keys to unlocking the solution that have remained just out of most organizations’ reach for some time now.

Luniel de Beer

Luniel de Beer is a former Business and Technology Product Manager.  At Net Objectives he has been working on solving the Agile Product Management dilemma with colleagues and clients for almost two years, and they’ve started achieving some remarkable successes and breakthroughs in this space.  Luniel will be joining us to share some of the insights they’ve gained and the approaches they’re taking that have led to this success.

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Aug
1
5:30 PM17:30

August 1st: How to Survive and Thrive on Self-Organizing Teams

Presented by Louise Penberthy

Note: This meeting will be held in Seattle, not on the Eastside, for this month only

No matter what your role is in agile development, you’ll run into people who are difficult to get along with, team members who won’t participate, and stakeholders who are demanding – in fact, you probably already have! Drawing on my experience as a mediator, I’ll give you strategies for dealing with difficult people, encouraging team participation, and surviving and thriving on self-organizing teams.

Louise Penberthy

Louise Penberthy is a Scrum Master and mediator. In her 15 years of mediating, she’s worked with many clients to help them deal with difficult people, communicate effectively, get good resolutions to disputes and conflict, create concrete, actionable plans for the future, and mend relationships. She’s experienced in communicating productively with people of many different backgrounds, professions, ethnic origins, cultures, and positions in organizational structures.

Louise was a software developer for many years, working primarily on web-based applications. She’s also a project manager, managing cross-cultural teams on a variety of projects, and working for organizations from the large to the small, from the well-established to the startup that crashed and burned.

She writes and speaks on a wide range of subjects related to agile teams and communication, including how to know that you’re being unwisely generous with your clients, how to remove your personal barriers to resolution, and how to shut down bullies. You can follow her blog at humaninterop.com/blog/. Ask her about her experiences with Personal Scrum and Personal Kanban.

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Jun
6
5:30 PM17:30

June 6th: The Past, Present and Future of Management

Presented by Julia Wester

Management is a hot topic in corporate America these days. We have a love/hate relationship with managers and are hard pressed to agree on much about them. What should they do? What should they be called? Do we even need them at all?

Having spent so much of my professional career in a management role, this is a topic that is extremely interesting and personal to me. As I waded through an identity crisis caused by the “death to managers” movement, I began to study the art of management and have learned quite a lot from the writings of Frederick Winslow Taylor, Abraham Maslow and Peter Drucker.

I invite you to join me to learn about major points in the history of management, discuss how the function has improved (or not), and generate ideas about how management should evolve to meet the needs of the future.

Julia Wester

Julia Wester is dedicated to teaching others how they can tame the chaos of everyday work by embracing transparency and continuous improvement. She is also passionate about studying and practicing the art of management with a goal of helping us learn from the past, improve the present and shape the future of how we work.

Julia currently works at LeanKit as an Executive Consultant and Manager of the Customer Education team and brings 17 years of experience working in and managing teams. You can keep up with Julia’s inner musings through her blog, everydaykanban.com, and by following her on twitter where she is known as @everydaykanban. 

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May
2
5:30 PM17:30

May 2nd: To Scale Agile You Need to be an Iron Chef

Presented by Joel Bancroft-Connors

We've got a whole smorgasbord of ingredients that can go into a scaled agile transformation. Coaching, education, metrics, mentoring, what agile framework to use and more make up the various parts of a transformation.

Being a recovering PMP (It's been eight years since I used a Gantt chart), I used to think there was one way to execute a plan. You started with a charter and went through the phases.

Only no two organizations are the same. No one process flow can address every situation you might face as an agile coach.

Which is why I stopped using a playbook and started using a cookbook. Like an Iron Chef, I get to know my ingredients very well. I understand who my judges (teams and stakeholders) are and I tailor how I introduce and prepare my ingredients to best meet the needs of my audience.

And as I've mastered my Agile Cookbook, I've discovered five key ingredients that make up the vast majority of all agile transformation dishes I have served.

So come learn what my Iron Agile secret ingredients are and see if they'll help you be the next Iron Agilist.

Joel Bancroft-Connors

Joel Bancroft-Connors is a professional Gorilla talker, tackling tough issues no one wants to deal with that are killing our teams and organizations. He is dedicated to solving challenges associated with enterprise programs and projects. With over 20 years of experience managing programs he has learned that  the most successful are those associated with lean and agile techniques. Having worked in roles like customer support, product management, and program management, Joel understands challenges across the business, helping organizations navigate change while guiding teams to happiness. He’s passionate about making the world a better place and uses his coaching and facilitation as the vehicle for change.

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Apr
4
5:30 PM17:30

April 4th: Give Control, Create Leaders: Teaching "Bosses" to be leaders

Presented by Adam Yuret

Some schools of Lean talk about "Leader Standard Work" but this term is often misunderstood to mean "Leader Standard Practices". In order to effectively lead people we must know how to serve them. Agile has used the term "servant leader" for some time now, but if you understand leadership you know that term is redundant.

Strategic leaders understand what the purpose of not only their own position is but the purpose of their organization. They understand what gets their employees out of bed and through the front door of the office every morning and works hard to support those people.

In this session we’re going to learn how to be an effective leader using "leader standard work" unlike any you’ve ever seen before. We’ll learn exactly what managers, directors and VPs in effective agile organizations do to help their reports, and how to adapt the work of David Marquet to software organizations.

Adam Yuret

Adam is an Exec Consultant, Portfolio/Program, and Systems Thinker at Context-driven Agility Consulting.  He has over 14 years of experience working in commercial and non-profit software engineering. In 2008 Adam discovered the complexities inherent in transitioning an enterprise software organization to a Scrum framework. 

Context Driven Agility is how Adam helps organizations achieve big-picture alignment in order to help grow what he calls "humanistic lean flow-based systems" which means synthesizing the leading ideas in lean portfolio prioritization and evolutionary approaches like Kanban to not only help organizations better understand the complexities inherent in human systems but empowering teams to solve them, collaboratively. Context Driven Agility has used these approaches to great effect at several organizations including Wal-Mart, Alaska Airlines, and Nike.

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Mar
7
5:30 PM17:30

March 7th: Is Your Strategy Clear and Visible?

Presented by Paul Osborn and Dave Nave

Come to the March 7th SeaSpin meeting to learn how a series of Lean Agile Roundtable sessions revealed that many business owners were exploring Lean/Agile techniques to enhance or overcome business issues. This insight led to a business systems capability assessment structure, then to a method for communicating strategy to the workforce. Not how to create strategy, but how to communication the company’s existing strategy.

Ultimately our communication method led to a book titled: A Guide To The Balanced Hoshin: A Better Way to Plan and Execute Strategy. A book intended to help capture and align strategic elements into a coherent picture, make it visible so everyone can see it and simple enough so everyone can understand it.

Paul Osborn and Dave Nave

Paul Osborn is President of The Agile PMO, and Dave Nave is owner of Dave Nave & Associates. Both are dedicated to constructive intervention and are passionate about aligning management practices and structure to create dynamic and meaningful change.

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Feb
7
5:30 PM17:30

February 7th: PsycPhilProg: The Intersection of Three Sciences

Presented by Ted Neward

Psychology: The science of the brain, emotions, and behavior, psychology attempts to understand the ‘hardware and software of the brain’, so as to better understand how humans reason—or not—when presented with various stimuli.

Philosophy: Ancient Greek for "love of wisdom", philosophy is the study of the general and fundamental nature of reality, existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind and language.

Programming: Ancient Latin for "please God let it compile this time", programming is the science by which pizza and caffeine are transformed into software for consumption.

Three distinctly different subjects, yet each deals with fundamentally the same thing: the mind, how we (or others with whom we interact) think, act, behave, and engage. Most of the time, programmers (and philosophers and psychologists) don't really think of these three things as being similar or alike, but given that all three work closely with the mind, mental models, and the ways in which we perceive and process information, it probably shouldn't come as a surprise that there's a surprising amount of overlap. But, surprisingly, it does come as a surprise to most developers. And in this presentation, we're going to uncover some of those surprises, learn a little about psychology, play amateur philosopher, contemplate the nature of mind and logic and the universe...and become better developers as a result.

Ted Neward

Ted Neward is an independent consultant specializing in high-scale enterprise systems, working with clients ranging in size from Fortune 500 corporations to small 10-person shops. He is an authority in Java and .NET technologies, particularly in the areas of Java/.NET integration (both in-process and via integration tools like Web services), programming languages of all forms, back-end enterprise software systems, and virtual machine/execution engine plumbing.

He is the author or co-author of several books, including Professional F# 2.0, Effective Enterprise Java, C# In a Nutshell, SSCLI Essentials, Server-Based Java Programming, and a contributor to several technology journals. All told, he has written close to a hundred articles in both print and online form.

Ted is also a Microsoft F# MVP (having also been an Architect and C# MVP in prior years), an F# Insider, C# Insider, and VB Insider, INETA speaker, former DevelopMentor instructor, current PluralSight course author, frequent worldwide conference speaker, and a member of various Java JSRs.

He lives in the Pacific Northwest with his wife, two sons, dog, four cats, eight laptops, seven tablets, nine phones and a rather large utility bill.

Reach him at ted@tedneward.com or visit Ted's blog at http://blogs.tedneward.com.

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Oct
4
5:30 PM17:30

October 4th: Risk Based Testing - Pragmatic Implementation In an Agile Group

Presented by Geoffrey Morris

The practice of Risk Based Testing is more of an attitude than a prescriptive process. As defined in Wikipedia, "Risk-based testing (RBT) is a type of software testing that functions as an organizational principle used to prioritize the tests of features and functions in software, based on the risk of failure, the function of their importance and likelihood or impact of failure."

This is a very useful approach to ensuring quality when it is clear that there are not enough Testers to keep up with the Developers. It also encourages the entire group to look at its decisions differently, with the possibility that they can have useful discussions across all roles, technical all the way out to the business stakeholders.

This talk will outline how it is being implemented in an agile development group that was used to "cowboy practices" (there's even a 50-gallon hat that offenders have to wear), and will consist of observations supplemented with little stories. All will tie back to various sources of gospel about this subject. We will also discuss scenarios where RBT just doesn't work.

Geoffrey Morris

Geoff Morris is a 29 year veteran of software engineering, developing products and data center services. He spent his first ten years wearing many hats in a successful startup where almost every possible mistake was made and then overcome. He has subsequently used his hard-learned lessons to set up and refine QA practices in other startups and major corporations, create guidance to help System Integrators with their consulting practices, and adapt fundamental QA principles to successfully compliment various Agile team structures without drag on their velocity.

Never one to stop learning, he's recently created a brand new QA team within a small, agile group in Avanade that builds internal products to support their Managed Services offerings. Other than CSPO and an ITIL Fundamentals certifications, he is virtually uncertified and self-educated, soaking up the wisdom of others around him. He figures it's a good time to start spreading what he's learned.

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Sep
6
5:30 PM17:30

September 6th: Probabilistic Forecasting using data: How to measure how long, how fast and how probable your delivery will be

Presented by Adam Yuret & Troy Magennis

"When will the project be done?!" This single question has created more dysfunction and psychological danger than probably any other single demand in history of work.
Story points, ideal hours, task hours, I’ve even seen a director who un-ironically tracks "developer minutes" to handle these issues.

Focused Objective has created some simple, easy to use (and free) forecasting tools which we can learn about while actually doing probabilistic forecasting using pen and paper.

Together we will workshop three scenarios:

  • Reliably capturing and spotting errors in historical data
  • Estimating total project size (story count) by sampling a subset of all features or epics
  • Forecasting completion date using probabilistic forecasting (Monte Carlo) of estimated or measured teams’ throughput (completion rate) or velocity (points)

In this workshop you will

  • Learn how much sample data is required to undertake a reliable forecast
  • Learn how to spot erroneous data or data that will mislead a forecast
  • Learn how to use story count estimates on a subset of features to forecast a projects combined total story count, or to see if the count you have been given is likely
  • Learn how to use historical data to perform a feature completion date forecast, or to see if the date you have been given is possible.

The processes described involve using dice to simulate uncertainty in projects and building a probabilistic picture of the more likely outcomes (often called Monte Carlo simulation). It is a fast and accurate way to combine historical data into meaningful and verifiable results. By performing a Monte Carlo forecast by hand, you will realize how easy the technique is to perform and not be afraid to use it in your next estimation or forecasting task.

We will also discuss the choice between estimation in points versus throughput and how this impacts forecasting accuracy. We will also discuss how most tools available for forecasting go wrong, and how to understand how accurate your forecast using these methods should be considered.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn how much sample data is required to undertake a reliable forecast
  • Learn how to spot erroneous data or data that will mislead a forecast
  • Learn how to use story count estimates on a subset of features to forecast a projects combined total story count, or to see if the count you have been given is likely
  • Learn how to use historical data to perform a feature completion date forecast, or to see if the date you have been given is possible.
  • Let’s bring real empirical data to the table and use it to make better decisions about how we manage our systems.

Adam Yuret

Adam Yuret is an experienced systems thinker who has consulted small non-profits and fortune 100 clients on adopting context-driven systems to solving difficult problems. Adam started Context Driven Agility in 2010 to share his passion for humanistic flow-based systems full time. He’s been consulting organizations and teams to adapt to their respective contexts using collaborative approaches and lean principles to great effect. Context Driven Agility is about recognizing that no one set of standardized best practices is applicable to every situation. Effective learning organizations strive to understand context before applying approaches or suggesting experiments.

Troy Magennis

Troy is an experienced IT executive who has been involved in many leading software organizations over 20 years. Most recently, Troy founded Focused Objective to build and promote risk management tools that simulate and forecast software development projects and portfolios. Technology has always been a passion for Troy. After cutting his teeth on early 8-bit personal computers, Troy moved into electronic engineering, which later led to positions in software application development, architecture and management for some of the most prominent corporations in automotive, banking, travel and online commerce. Email: troy.magennis@focusedobjective.com

Presentation Materials

The tools discussed in the meeting are available on the Focused Objective web site:

http://focusedobjective.com/free-tools-resources/

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Jul
27
5:30 PM17:30

August 2nd: Developing an Effective Emergency Communication System, Steve Myers

Recent large-scale disasters have presented considerable challenges to emergency communications systems and exposed serious issues, both in communicating with the public and in interactions between emergency providers.  FirstNet is a proposed dedicated nationwide public safety wireless 4G LTE broadband network for emergency responders.  This broadband network will fulfill a fundamental need of the public safety community as well as the last remaining recommendation of the 9/11 Commission. FirstNet will bring 21st century tools to tens of thousands of organizations and individuals that respond to emergencies at the local, state, tribal and federal levels.  With the increase use of devices in the emergency responder community opportunities exists for application and software developers to bring their expertise to the market.

Steve Myers

Steve Myers is the Senior Program Manager of the Pacific Northwest Economic Region and provides subject matter expertise on various projects relating to economic development, the environment and stakeholder engagement specific to the Arctic, academia, and university engagement, workforce development, invasive species, mining, emergency management and innovation issues by managing various projects; facilitating and presenting at meetings; and providing insight on legislative issues. PNWER launched the Regional Disaster Resilience and Homeland Security Program in November 2001 with the goal of improving the Pacific Northwest's ability to withstand and recover and to protect its critical infrastructures from all-hazards disasters.

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Jul
5
5:30 PM17:30

July 5th: The Agile Leadership Kata, Tom Perry

In software development, we use the term "practice" loosely compared to many other disciplines. We have all sorts of "Best Practices" that we refer to all the time. It is as if by repeating the word "practice" we might somehow arrive at that professionalism that so many desire. Are there things we can practice to become better agile leaders? If so, what would that practice look like?

In his presentation, Tom introduced some of the latest research into how deliberate practice works. He explored the techniques you can use to apply deliberate practice and hone your skills as an agile team leader. From individual exercises through collaborative games, he examined how we can refine and improve our leadership skills. Take back an understanding of what the impact of practice is on the performance of individuals and teams. Gain hands on experience with different models of practice. Take away a framework for a set of exercises that you can use to form your own deliberate practice for improving your leadership skills. 

Tom's presentation is available at http://www.seaspin.org/s/Kata-Discover-the-Art-of-Practice-to-Become-a-Better-Leader.pdf.

Tom Perry 

Tom has been working in software development for over 20 years. He has worked on teams at startup companies, large corporations in the Fortune 100 and the State and Federal Government. His background includes testing, development, project/program management, agile coaching/mentoring and training. As part of his involvement in the greater agile community, he led the Seattle eastside chapter of the APLN. Tom speaks at a wide variety of software development conferences all over the world on a wide variety of Agile and Lean topics. He is also the author of the recently published "Little Book of Impediments". Check out his blog for more information about his writing, presentations and current projects http://agiletools.wordpress.com or follow him on twitter @tlperry 

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Jun
7
5:30 PM17:30

June 7th: Shipping Kiwi Dials, Peter Moon

Development on Kiwi Dials started in June, 2015. Seven months later, the product launched simultaneously on iOS, Android, and Windows Phone on a common Azure cloud platform. Kiwi Dials is a boot-strapped startup. Find out how Peter and a globally distributed team organized themselves to ship working software every week. Learn how the team integrated design, user-testing, weekly retrospectives, and backlog grooming to balance features, architecture, operations, reporting, and new requirements. 

Peter Moon

Peter Moon is a Managing Partner at Navicet, a design consultancy that helps teams develop design capabilities into a competitive advantage. Peter has over 30 years of commercial software design and IT management experience. He is a 13-year veteran of Microsoft and held such positions as Director of Tools for North America Services, Engineering PUM, Quality Director, and Consulting Engagement Manager where he drove some of the largest services engagements in North America. While at Microsoft, Peter developed new practices for IT software design and drove global adoption for over 10,000 IT pros. He has been a speaker at numerous industry conferences, has coached hundreds of teams to achieve better business results through proven practices in design, requirements, risk and project management and has served on Microsoft IT’s Architectural and Standards review boards. Peter launched Navicet with a group of like-minded practitioners in 2014 to serve customers in the Puget Sound area who believe in the power of design to transform business.

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May
3
5:30 PM17:30

May 3rd: FAST Agile, presented by Ron Quartel

FAST Agile is an experiment that proposes a new approach to organizing work, organizing people and also a collaboration model. FAST combines elements of Scrum, Extreme Programming (XP), Story Mapping and Open Space Technology (OST) in a way that has never been done before with the goal of high bandwidth, high-quality software in short iterations.

FAST is equal parts management technique, culture changing tool, agile scaling framework, and a way to reboot creativity and innovation in an organization .

Please come along and help perfect what might become the best agile idea this decade.

Ron Quartel

Ron's passion is for profitable software development in a happy, productive work environment. He has been programming computers for decades and over the last 15 years has worked as a Development Manager, Agile Coach, Trainer, Extreme Programmer, XP Coach and Lean Entrepreneur. 

He is the inventor of FAST Agile™ - a lightweight scaled agile framework which focuses on self-organization and collaboration over process. Also co-founder of a startup which created the Backlog Optimizer™ - a tool that uses choice modeling to enable collaboration and remove bias. Ron describes his personal mission is to "Create harmony between business and development."

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Apr
5
5:30 PM17:30

April 5th: SCRUM for Non-Profits, presented by William Newing

With press releases, social backlash, fires-to-put out, union issues and coordinating members from multiple time zones; how in the WORLD is this Non-Profit Mission ever going to work? By addressing one impediment at a time using Scrum.

Scrum is a project management methodology. It’s origins can be found in manufacturing, emphasized in software, and is transferable to other industries such as non-profits.

William Newing

William recently had the privilege to coach a budding non-profit in Canada called Iron and Earth. Their mission is to catalyze growth in the renewable energy industry. William co-chaired a year-long planning committee for the 2008 Scholarship Awards Gala at National Association of Asian American Professionals Seattle (NAAAP). From 2009 to 2010, he led Taiwanese American Professionals Society (TAPS) to doubling monthly events with 250% increase in members by 2011.

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Mar
1
5:30 PM17:30

March 1: Get Out of Technical Debt, presented by Steve Kuo

You have pleased the people whose opinion counts. You saved time, again and again, by hacking in a new feature rather than investing the time required to maintain the integrity of your code base.  As a result, your code base is more fragile.  The time you saved today was actually borrowed from the future. Payment is soon due!  Now what?

Come to this session to learn technical practices that can help you pay off your debt and keep you out of debt. And just as important; come to this session to learn about how to communicate technical debt to management. Get them to support the payment plan.

Meeting Schedule

SeaSPIN is a free event open to anyone with interest in the philosophy, theory, process, technology, tools, sport or politics of Lean and Agile. We meet on the first Tuesday of the month.

Our generous sponsor is SolutionsIQ, donating the classroom and facilities for our use, to say nothing of the pizza for your enjoyment.

Location

6801 185th Ave N.E.
Suite 200
Redmond, WA 98052

Schedule

5:30 - Pizza and networking, pizza supplied by SolutionsIQ, Thank You!
6:00 - A 15 minute roundtable,(while networking continues)
6:20 - Business meeting and introductions
6:45 - Main presentation - "Technical Debt" by Steve Kuo
8:30 - End of evening 

Steve Kuo 

Steve is a Senior Extreme Programming Developer, Agile Engineer and Technical Coach.  He is also a scientist, Bachelor of Science in Microbiology and Aquatic Biology, and spent some years doing research to cure Trypanosomiasis, Leishmaniasis, HIV and genetic research into cures for cancers and Cystic Fibrosis.  Steve's experience in software, since the mid-90’s, covers a wide range of fields.  A few include banking, consulting, education, gaming, healthcare and shipping/inventory.  A majority of those years was consulting, working with all sorts of code, most of it heavily burdened with technical debt accrued from past hard and difficult choices.  Addressing technical debt helped developers, teams and organizations cope with and improve their software.  Proactively addressing Technical Debt has been a focus of Steve's, while imbuing developers, teams and organizations to become more Agile in his classroom. 

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Feb
2
5:30 PM17:30

February 2nd: Are We Agile Yet? Presented by Jeff Smith

Are We Agile Yet?

The manifesto has been around about 15 years now. Many of us have done our share of projects, initiatives, and transformations... Maybe some of us have even experienced agility. But there are also failed attempts, feel-good implementations, and superficial efforts. Where is this magic we keep hearing about?

Elisabeth Hendrickson named her acid test for agility some years back.

Agile teams produce a continuous stream of value, at a sustainable pace, while adapting to the changing needs of the business.

So - how about it? Are we there yet? If you are in a larger enterprise, are you still moving forward? Has anyone given up? When does it really work - and when we are not given these critical success elements, what can we do?

In this presentation, I will review things I have seen... good and bad... that slowed us down or made it work, that were misunderstood by us, by our teams, by leadership. The intent is for the group also to get involved, offering some of their own questions, thoughts, and experiences... Audience involvement is designed in. All of this, in hopes of realizing the magic or at least breaking through to new and productive possibilities.

Jeff Smith has over 30 years in high-tech, first having worked in electronic design and then moving into software development, finally settling into a performance focus guiding software teams in lean and agile practices, organizational change, and technical methods to support this. Employers, clients, and customers have included companies large and small in many industries, including Dell, IBM, Boeing, Lexis-Nexis, MDProductivity, NetObjectives, Trilogy, Recognition Equiment, Mizar, LTV Aerospace & Defense, Amdahl, and others known and obscure. Jeff holds a Bachelors from Texas A&M in Electrical Engineering and is a Certified ScrumMaster, with certifications also in software test, ITIL, Six Sigma, and Lean+. He has served for professional groups such as SeaSPIN, Austin SPIN, Austin Agile, Austin Agile University, the Seattle Chapter of ISPI, the Austin Chapter of AITP, and BeyondAgile. He spends most of his spare time fishing for clarity, railing at Facebook, grasping at straws, playing drums, and reading TPS reports.

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Jan
5
5:30 PM17:30

January 5th: The Art of the Retrospective

The Art of the Retrospective

Presented by Dawn Hemminger

If you’ve been on an agile team, then you’ve experienced your share of retrospectives, maybe even facilitated a few yourself. A retrospective, at its core, is time set aside to step back from the day to day to reflect on how you’re doing and to find ways to improve. With that spirit in mind, you will be immersed in an engaging real-life retrospective as you learn proven facilitation techniques that will take your next retrospective from Ho Hum to Oh Wow!

Dawn Hemminger has been an engineering professional in Seattle for over 22 years and a community organizer for the last 10. Her uniquely diverse professional and volunteer experience has led her to many different interests ranging from training airline mechanics to leading community building workshops, solving complex technical problems for customers to building neighborhood parks. Having worked within large, complex companies (public and private) and working to bring together disparate organizations within City government, she have gained unique practical experience on how to build great teams and guide them to success.

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Dec
1
5:30 PM17:30

December 1: Big Data, presented by Michael Kaufman

Get Past The Big Data Hype
Understand, Then Implement!

Presented by Michael Kaufman

The Big Data hype is over and it’s time to actually get results.  Not easy when Big Data has been so overhyped, the University of California Berkeley compiled a list of 40 competing, contradictory definitions. But to those who really understand Big Data, it’s a competitive advantage on par with computers or the internet itself. The key is to understand that Big Data is really a collection of different technologies all vaguely clumped together by those who either don't know better or vendors who thinks ambiguity helps sales.  As Thomas Davenport said, "Vendors and consultants will take any new, hot term and apply it to their existing offerings…and that has already happened in spades with Big Data."  In this talk, Big Nimble founder Michael Kauffman cuts through the techno-babble and marketing fog to explain what Big Data actually is and how to use it.

What Is Big Data?  Dodge the Big Data mumbo jumbo, technical weeds and general statements of Big Data's awesome-ness and amazing-ness. Align Big Data technical reality, data scientist skill sets, and business problems. Get Results Out of Big Data. Understand the relative costs, benefits and limitations of Big Data types. Build a Big Data strategy to accomplish the goal.  

"I felt completely frustrated by Big Data.  I couldn't even get anyone to tell me what it is! It wasn't until I saw Michael's presentation that I finally understood Big Data.  And how to benefit from it.   He really has the uncanny ability to make the ambiguous crystal clear."  -- David Carroll, Vice President, Banner Bank

Michael has 20 years’ experience as a technology strategist and attorney for Fortune 100 companies, startups, non-profits, & government both in the US and abroad.  Michael explains technology in plain English and has personally guided numerous teams and organizations in their transition from gut-driven to data-driven. Today, that means understanding Big Data, just the latest in a long line of computer aided decision support technologies stretching back to the 1950’s. As Michael has done with previous technology, he clears the Big Data marketing fog so people can make informed, strategic and profitable decisions.              

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Nov
3
5:30 PM17:30

November 3: Thinking In Community While Framing Your Project: Beyond Playing Nice

See a video of this presentation

The purpose of this presentation is two fold – to bring light to two highly interdependent bottlenecks commonly found in organizations. The first bottleneck could be described as the human condition. Given how each of us interprets our own reality, it is surprising we can work together at all, let alone Think In Community. The second bottleneck is how a company, invests capital and human resources to satisfy the needs of the customer. Can a candidate project be framed to simultaneously bring higher customer value while reducing the conditions driving the first bottleneck—ultimately setting up for Thinking In Community?

We will explore selected excerpts and key elements from an integrated set of disciplines proven to successfully solve a broad range of management issues, and create a dramatically competitive advantage for any company. The exploration will end with a group activity demonstrating Thinking In Community.

Steve Dightman is a principle at RegularGuys Consulting which provides multi-faceted consulting and coaching aimed at improving business performance. 

Steve has a diverse background which includes many years with The Boeing Co. where he supported manufacturing operations, engineering, facilities, and business process improvement. He managed the Commercial Airplane Co., Education and Training group, supporting real time embedded computer avionics and simulation, engineering applications, operating systems, software engineering development, supply chain software applications and manufacturing equipment maintenance.  

Dave Nave is a Management Engineer. As a scholar-practitioner he specializes in combining application and theory for a new way to manage, as well as integrating improvement methodologies and business practices. His greatest joy is helping people discover new opportunities in themselves and the processes where they work. As an mentor, advisor, and coach he strives to help teams, groups, and individuals think in new ways, and apply the new thinking to improve performance.

Dave holds a MBA in Management Systems (Deming Scholars Program) from Fordham University and a BS in Manufacturing Engineering Technology. 

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Oct
6
5:45 PM17:45

October 6 at SolutionsIQ: Create CLEAN Code

CLEAN stands for the key code qualities that drop the cost of ownership for the code we write: Cohesive, Loosely coupled, Encapsulated, Assertive, and Non-redundant. In Create CLEAN Code we'll use the Single Responsibility Principle to increase cohesion, use abstractions to reduce coupling, come to understand encapsulation as hiding "how" with "what" to make code simpler to understand, increase the assertiveness of code by keeping state with behavior, learn how to better distinguish between redundancy and duplication, and see how testability directly reflects code quality.

Many external attributes of quality software-software that's free from defects and easy to maintain-are reflections of these internal code qualities. When classes and methods are CLEAN, they're less prone to mistakes and far easier to debug, test, and maintain. Join us, take a deep dive into the code qualities that make software more maintainable and less bug-friendly. Create software that not only provides value now but is also easy to change and extend so it can continue to deliver value far into the future.

David Scott Bernstein is the author of the new book Beyond Legacy Code: Nine Practices to Extend the Life (and Value) of Your Software. It's an insider's view of the software industry drawn from his decades of hands-on experience as a software developer, trainer, and consultant to some of the biggest players in the business. With its emphasis on technical excellence, the primary audience for Beyond Legacy Code is software development managers and their teams.

David's continuing passion for software design and construction has led him to train more than 8,000 developers since 1989 at hundreds of companies around the world including Amazon, Yahoo, and Microsoft-where his book's advice has been successfully applied. His consulting firm, To Be Agile (http://ToBeAgile.com ), helps developers adopt Extreme Programming practices such as test-first development, pair programming, and refactoring.

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Sep
1
5:30 PM17:30

September 1st: Art of Code Review

Save the date, Sept. 1, be ready for a different location.

thePlatform, LLC
1000 2nd Ave, Suite 100
Seattle 98104

This is a single month relocation.  SeaSPIN is back in Redmond on October 6th.  Our regular host has a September class scheduled in their wonderful Redmond classroom while our temporary host wants to introduce us to their great facility.

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Jul
7
5:30 PM17:30

Tuesday July 7, Liberating Structures

Liberating Structures (www.liberatingstructures.com) make it possible to include many more people in shaping the future. Co-developed by Keith McCandless and Henri Lipmanowicz, Liberating Structures introduce tiny shifts in everyday interactions that profoundly influence how we meet, plan, decide and execute everything from day-to-day meetings to enterprise strategy and design efforts.

Roll-up-your-sleeves; we will use 4-7 Liberating Structures on challenges-at-hand. You will experience:
- Drawing Together: Connect to the community of practice in novel ways.
- Critical Uncertainties: Develop strategies for a range of plausible, possible future realities.
- Ecocycle: Get a fresh view on strategically advancing your portfolio of activities and business relationships. 
- 15% Solutions & Troika: Get better-than-expected, in-the-moment help from peers on making fast progress on projects-in-progress.
- What, So What, Now What & 1-2-4-All: Experience two fundamental Liberating Structures as we retrospect into the always present, yet rarely attended to, structures of interaction. 

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S. FISHER QUA specializes in PreAgile design planning, customer development and applying the principles of Lean Startup to enterprise innovation initiatives. He previously spent five years leading the Washington Health Foundation's social enterprise startup and product development efforts, and contributes to the ongoing development of the Liberating Structures methodology.

If your interests at all intersect with bikes, farms and PNW wildflowers, elders, death + dying, modern dance, arts + healthcare, cooperatives, tactical urbanism, soccer, human ecology or user generated design he likely wants to grab coffee with you. 

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Host: SolutionsIQ
6801 185th Ave NE #200, Redmond, WA 98052

 

 

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