Engineering Culture by InfoQ

About this podcast
InfoQ.com is a trusted source of information for over 1, 500, 000 software developers worldwide. Over the last 10 years we have covered all the hottest topics from the industry, in early stages, to make sure that we fulfill our mission to drive innovation in professional software development. On top of news, articles, presentations and minibooks we’ve recently started this podcast series dedicated to software engineers. We’ve interviewed some of the top CTOs, engineers and technology directors from the people behind InfoQ.com and QCon.
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Engineering Culture

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Latest episodes
Feb. 12, 2018
In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke to Rich Mironov about the current trends in product development Why listen to this podcast: • There is nothing more wasteful in the world than beautifully building a product that no one wants to buy • Everywhere in the world engineering teams are similar to other engineering teams and sales teams are similar to other sales teams and the two groups are completely opposite to each other • Dropping time and funding allocated to the quality/infrastructure improvements is similar to joining a health club and never going – you won’t get better and fitter unless you go • If you can’t cope with the role which has lots of responsibility and little authority then maybe a product role isn’t right for you • Bringing the dev team into close contact with customers has been a goal and a topic of conversation for a long time, but very few organisations are actually doing this • Good product managers frame problems, they don’t demand features More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2GaezdT You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq Check the landing page on InfoQ: http://bit.ly/2GaezdT
Feb. 5, 2018
In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke to Cahlan Sharp about the DevMountain schools that teach software development skills in intensive “bootcamp” programs. Why listen to this podcast: • A lot of formal education is very theory based rather than teaching hands-on development skills • A Stack-Overflow survey in which 60% of respondents describe themselves as self-taught developers • A high-pressure, high performance environment where students learn by doing results in faster learning and better retention • All of this information and teaching is available online, however when trying to teach yourself online you don’t know what you don’t know so it will probably take longer to find what you actually need to learn • Employers are struggling to find the talent they need to continue to grow their businesses • The higher education system is ill-equipped to supply the people needed for the jobs that are available • Challenging the “it takes four years to learn something” mentality – people can and do learn things quickly and deeply when given the opportunity to do so More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2E5Gaw2 You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq Check the landing page on InfoQ: http://bit.ly/2E5Gaw2
Jan. 22, 2018
In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke Linda Rising about her talk at Agile 2017 in which she explores her own reaction to the politics in the USA and how it triggered her to research morality and values. Why listen to this podcast: • The inclusiveness, openness, learning and joy that characterises the agile community • Exploring her own reactions to people with different political viewpoints and finding research into morality which helps explain them • There are values which are commonly held, but different groups empathise some over others • Experiments that show that even when people understand the differences in viewpoint individuals are largely unable to argue from the “other” perspective • Seek to come to an understanding of other people’s values, even if you don’t share them More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2rvMGdR You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq Check the landing page on InfoQ: http://bit.ly/2rvMGdR
Jan. 15, 2018
In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke to Wendy Closson about her journey of recovery from contracting a rare, deadly form of cancer to leading to the Optimize You track at QCon New York Why listen to this podcast: • The impact of contracting a rare form of cancer • The combination of things that together make a difference to survival rates • The five things that will impact your life for the better: Change the way you speak, think, feel, actions and attitude • The feedback loop – how you speak influences how you think which influences how you feel and nonviolent communication makes this a positive cycle • Different people have different needs and styles so find what works for you – use the tools that will help you fly. Consciousness is your awareness of yourself – your thoughts, your emotions, your actions, your attitude; how is the way you’re speaking planting seeds for tomorrow More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2B36e8Q You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq Check the landing page on InfoQ: http://bit.ly/2B36e8Q
Jan. 2, 2018
In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke to Ramon Harrington of Vistaprint about his QCon New York talk on Rapid Prototyping. Why listen to this podcast: • Putting engineers in front of customers and having conversations results in far better understanding and empathy for the customer’s needs • Be prepared to launch before you’ve built everything you think the product needs in order to avoid building features people don’t want • In engineering there is often a “right” answer, in product identification there isn’t – you don’t know until you try it out • Launching early with a reduced feature set can result in more engaged customers because their important problems are addressed first, and the product will be improved incrementally • Sometimes the software that you don’t write is more important than the software that you do write More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2qfuJQ7 You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq Check the landing page on InfoQ: http://bit.ly/2qfuJQ7
Dec. 19, 2017
This is the Engineering Culture Podcast, from the people behind InfoQ.com and the QCon conferences. In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke to Conal Scanlon about his talk at QCon New York on Monte Carlo Simulation for forecasting feature development Why listen to this podcast: • Knowledge work is inherently variable, and estimates are inevitably incorrect • Monte Carlo simulation projects likely completion based on past history rather than future guesses • A small set of real data points is extrapolated to 1000 samples and that is used to produce a probability curve • A forecast is a point in time situation – as teams get better at delivery their predictability should improve • Everything in the delivery process should be subject to change as it is continuously improved More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2kneWJM You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq Want to see extented shownotes? Check the landing page on InfoQ: http://bit.ly/2kneWJM
Dec. 11, 2017
In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke to Dave West, CEO and chief product owner at Scrum.org, about the state of Scrum in 2017 and the future of agile. Why listen to this podcast: • Agile adoption is now in the late-majority phase of the adoption curve; large organisations who are risk averse have seen the ideas proven elsewhere and they are adopting them • The underlying issues are not that complicated – we’ve got customers who have needs that they can’t explain and are rapidly changing, so we need ways to deliver products and experiment rapidly to enable us to learn and adapt to the emergent needs • The unicorn organisations are not successful because of their technology; it’s because they have served their customers better than the traditional businesses did • The primary customers of scrum.org are professional product developers, and helping them become more professional helps ensure the products are built better • Young enquiring minds “get” why an agile approach is the obvious way of working in today’s world • The future of agile is about communicating in different ways to make it relevant to different people to solve their evolving and emerging problems More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2ygEufI You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq Want to see extented shownotes? Check the landing page on InfoQ: http://bit.ly/2ygEufI
Dec. 6, 2017
In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke to Kent McDonald and Heather Mylan-Mains on their talk at Agile 2017 about Socratic Questioning Why listen to this podcast: - Socratic questioning n approach to learning which is based on getting to answers through a question-based dialogue - Frequently what is presented at the beginning of a product investigation is a proposed solution rather than exploring the real need - There are six categories of questions to expose assumptions, change perspectives and delve into an issue or opportunity - There are other techniques which are needed when there is uncertainty about the existence of a problem or opportunity - This approach is not just restricted to elicitation – it can be used very effectively in a team situation when exploring options and identifying challenges More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2AX6pX8 You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq Want to see extented shownotes? Check the landing page on InfoQ: http://bit.ly/2AX6pX8
Nov. 28, 2017
In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, talks to Anders Wallgren, CTO of Electric Cloud about the adoption of DevOps, containers and microservices and the dangers of vanity metrics. Why listen to this podcast: - Adoption of containers is increasing – one survey indicated 42% of organizations surveyed are using them for something - Container orchestration platforms are good at managing the challenges around scaling and resilience - Architecture is a significant challenge for agility and DevOps – the need to move away from monoliths towards microservices requires a fundamental rethink of our products - Software organisations who are still building monolithic applications do so at their own peril - These ideas are not new, and we have known about them for decades – it’s not the quality of the daily work that matters, it’s the improvement in the quality of the daily work - Focus on actionable metrics – don’t show me a metric unless there is something I can do about it or it is something I should take action about More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2BiDXvm You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq Want to see extented shownotes? Check the landing page on InfoQ: http://bit.ly/2BiDXvm
Nov. 22, 2017
In this podcast Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke to Jason Yip about removing friction in the developer experience and DevOps at Spotify Why listen to this podcast: • Friction is the feeling that your environment is fighting you – examples include poorly named variables in code, editors configured incorrectly, access to environments etc • These things often seem small individually, but together they significantly and slow down development activities • Cultivate refined annoyance; not tolerating these issues but actively resolving them • Challenges often come mainly from rapid growth – every design will fail if you just try to scale it larger and larger, you need to redesign for larger contexts, what worked yesterday may not work tomorrow and needs to be adapted • Be careful not to locally optimize one part of the system at the expense of the overall throughput More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ http://bit.ly/2hVBH9A You can also subscribe to the InfoQ newsletter to receive weekly updates on the hottest topics from professional software development. bit.ly/24x3IVq Subscribe: www.youtube.com/infoq Like InfoQ on Facebook: bit.ly/2jmlyG8 Follow on Twitter: twitter.com/InfoQ Follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/infoq