Topics

Workshops

The Agile-ish GitHub Flow

GitHub is in the unique position of creating a development tool suite and also using that same suite to rapidly build, review, ship and improve our own code base. Our process is named the GitHub Flow and it shares many traits with Agile approaches. In this hands-on workshop, I'll help you experience this process with live follow-along examples using the GitHub.com platform, Forks, Git branching, Pull Requests, and continuous integration, along with stories and anecdotes from a typical workday at GitHub. At a few strategic pause points, I'll take questions, reflect on how what you are experiencing differs from your workplace, and do a demonstration of code change and deployment processes on a live GitHub.com Internet-facing application.

Introduction to Retrospective Facilitation

"Retrospectives are very important in a constantly improving organization, you should have them!" Ok, so you probably know the "why", but do you know the "how"? This workshop aims to give the very basic tools for succesfully facilitating a retrospective - structure, planning, activities etc. Whether inspecting a two-week sprint or a year long project, the basics remain the same. Warning; this might be a little on the lecture side, but I expect a lot of questions and promise some answers!

Pitching agile

Ever felt like entering the dragon's den? Now's your chance...
Imagine this scenario. You're leading an engineering team in a medium size company, say in financial services. Your organisation has a mix of old and new technology, some in house development, some outsourced, some internal systems, some customer-facing ... in short, all the usual problems.
You're excited about agile, you've had a couple of conversations with people about it, and suddenly the directors have asked you to make a short pitch at the next executive meeting. What will you say? How will you pitch it?
In the first part of the workshop, teams will prepare, present and iterate over a pitch to four hard-nosed executives, who'll then confer and select the most effective pitch. Following this, we'll reflect on the effectiveness of the communication, the language used, and the arguments presented, in an attempt to learn some ways of bridging the communication gap between enthusiastic agile technologists and seasoned business-folk.

Listening++

Ever felt like someone has really understood you? That your ideas were listened to. That you were listened to? I know it feels great. Superb. Ever been to situation that someone does not listen to you? Great - so have I.
What does it actually mean to 'being listened to'? What happens within me when I'm listening really carefully? We'll make a deep dive within ourselves to study what helps us to listen others.
How do I listen? How do I not listen? How do I actively listen? How can I listen within an emotional discussion, even when I feel angry? These are some questions we are looking for answers.
As this is a workshop - welcome, here you will be listened to!

The Mikado Method

The Mikado Method workshop [BYOL=Bring Your Own Laptop] [BYOC=Bring Your Own Code] Time to get that nasty code refactored! This workshop will start by giving a quick introduction to the Mikado Method, a structured way to make that big change to the codebase in small controlled steps. After the intro, the attendees will try the method on their own code (BYOC!) on their own laptop (BYOL!!!). There will also be smaller examples as a backup. At regular intervals the group reflect and discuss any problems or insights.

Test-driven development with Lego Robots

In this workshop, we're practicing making our test ideas crisp and clear before implementation. As business owners, we have one Lego Mindstorms Robot, a great vision for a product with technical uncertainties and plenty of devices to program the robot with. We need you to make our vision happen - working in teams, providing continuous value in short increments, designing the tests first and then implementing each feature. To build the smallest possible value, we're not targeting the full vision at once, but a feature at a time. It's likely that this style of development will also lead you to refactor your implementation, keeping the driving tests the same. Implementing in this workshop does not require coding skills, but the development environment in use is about configuring ready-made components. The focus of the workshop is on making our tests small and focus on learning with our tests. For running the tests, you will need access to the integration test environment with the actual robot - and while you can visit to learn many times, the individual visit has an entry criteria (test exists) and a time-box. To set a common pace and enable cross-workshop learning, we will stop for a retrospective regularly. We'll also reflect on how the lessons from this workshop can be applied in real projects. Join us in building customer value in a safe environment with uncertainty, one feature at a time!

Talks

The Antimatter Principle

What if a crisp white envelope dropped into you letter box today? What if it contained a neat, gold-blocked invitation to spends some time considering what really matters to you?

Would you be interested? Would you be interested enough to commit the time and effort implicit in accepting the invitation?

In this keynote, Bob Marshall extends an invitation to explore how you feel about work, the extent to which your personal needs – and the needs of others – are presently being met by work, and the part Agile can play in attending better to those needs.

Beyond Budgeting - an agile management model for new business and people realities

Description is coming soon. Stay tuned!

Agile-ish Life at GitHub

GitHub's unique work environment is based on open source and agile approaches and is what many employees describe as "the best place" they've ever worked. What makes them say that?

Together, we'll explore some of the workflows and business tactics that makes GitHub unique–dare I say, almost odd–but highly productive and profitable. We'll examine, by use of real examples, never-before-seen app screenshots, and process demos, why everyone at GitHub is enabled to do ops work from a chatroom and how that affects the culture from customer support staff all the way to network infrastructure specialists. We'll continue the culture and tool exploration with a look at how task assignments are made by open allocation, how that matches passion with projects, and a review of some of the biggest challenges the company is facing today.

We'll conclude with a comparison of the development, assignment, and communication elements of Agile we've extracted mostly as-is and which ones we've brutally bent to fit our construction of desktop apps, web sites, and virtual appliances. You'll come away shocked, surprised, and inspired to change your organziation and leverage some of the tactics used at GitHub.

What your mother should have told you about startups

Don't put your daughter on the stage., Mrs Worthington. Or indeed, suggest that she follow you into the mad, risky, stressful, exciting world of startups.
As CTO at Vyclone Inc, I've experienced all the ups and downs of a tech startup with a product that ticks all the boxes - social, mobile, video, cloud. I'll share some of my stories and learnings, and want to hear some of yours too.
In the course of the talk we'll try to distil some key wisdom, so that when you tell your daughter or son what you think they should know before taking the plunge into a startup.
Of course, they won't listen to you...

Also top management needs to be agile!

Organisations keep on sending project personnel to different training and education programs. Methodologies evolve and tools improve, but project performance keeps the same. There seem to be invisible obstacles on the way to success. In his speech Tapsa speculates with the possibility that it might be the management that should be trained and working habits changed. The speech includes topics like steering committee is under utilised resource, are right things measured?, why communication efforts don’t make an impact and why bold targets get diluted over the course of project execution.

Refactoring legacy code

This is a true story. Me getting an assignment to a project which had 0 tests. And no other developers.
Old, yet live code written in Java/Groovy/Grails. Intertwined responsibilities, messy code. Typical length of a class was hundreds of lines of code.

In the presentation, I’ll show two example cases of introducing new features to the project. The first is a story of adding a search criteria to a list of 15 parameters.

The other example is total refactoring of handling files transferred to the system using FTP. It included both changes to the supported file types and the structure of the code.

In both examples, I try to think the end results (code) from both maintainability perspective and from business perspective.

New agile model for public sector

We will cover the essential prerequisites for agile projects and some particular challenges of the public sector. Different types of contracts are covered. As a novel development, we present how we have successfully made the source code publicly available through Github on some of our projects with the Finnish National Board of Education (Opetushallitus) and Ministry of Justice, Finland (Oikeusministeriö).

Public source code opens up new possibilities for agile projects and in this game everybody can win. We have also been able to negotiate and develop surprisingly agile contracts and processes with the Finnish Board of Education and National Land Survey of Finland (Maanmittauslaitos), which we'll present.

To reap the benefits of agile with the public sector, we need customers, vendors and developers to work together. The old ways must be challenged, but this is an opportunity rather than a threat. Whether you want or not, the game is afoot!

Social Neuroscience of Agile Transformations - Team's Gain & Manager's Pain

Pick your worse habit. Something that you really would need to change. Now, pick a habit that you like, that feels safe, makes you feel good. Next, think about the effort required to replace both of these habits with new habits. Multiply this effort with, say, twenty. That gives you an idea of how difficult it can feel for a manager to change his way of feeling and thinking going from traditional top-down to self-directed agile. In collaboration with the audience Riina will take us through chain of thought combining recent neuroscientific findings to what makes agile transformations so challenging on an individual level, especially for managers. No slideshows. Presence. Neuro. Emotions. Storytelling. Together.

Case: Scrum and Legacy - Then and Now

A few years ago I was a member of a development/support team that was struggling with a legacy system and a formless process. This is the story of our Scrum adoption and how that helped us to survive. However, that is only the half (or two thirds...) of the story; I've been able to study the current situation and see how the process and the team have evolved during the years.

Did we really understand what testing means to us?

With his presentation Lauri wants to make people curious about how we could reduce uncertainties in projects and how to achieve higher quality by using testing as a fundamental tool in software projects.

All Hands on Deck - Introduction to Lean Architecture

What is the role of architecture in a modern software project? Have we forgotten the value of proper planning in our effort to be flexible and agile while stripping away all excess fat? Or are we really better off without the architects in their ivory towers and fine without the big architecture bibles gathering dust on the developers' tables? This talk will introduce you to lean architecture, a place where architects and agilists can share the same camp fire and still leave with their neckbeards intact. We will see the value and the role of both the architect and the architectural documentation in an agile project.

The Reverse Conway - organizational hacking for techies

Here we'll explore the relationship between technology/architechture and organizational design. Looking at how they're codependent, co-evolutionary and bidirectionally influences each other. Well explore how the architect is a social agent and how management shapes software.

Embedded Agile: Principles, Solutions and Experiences

Last year we discussed challenges and impediments of using agile in embedded systems industry. Now we propose solutions to overcome these challenges based on our research results. In the presentation we discuss how to interpret agile principles in embedded context, introduce suitable agile techniques for an embedded company new to agile, and present real life experiences on applying these techniques. Come to listen to our ideas and complement with your own!

Do agile methods promote well-being at work?

Do agile methods promote well-being at work? Well-being at work is more than being unstressed. Finnish Institute of Occupation Health studied the connections between agile methods and well-being at work through interviews, surveys and physiological stress measurements. Do agile methods help to manage work-related stress and cope with workload? Do they advance meaningfulness of work and fluent work processes? And under which preconditions? Useful information about factors that advance and challenge well-being at work in agile methods. Ideas for your own and your team’s well-being at work.

How to think like an Exploratory tester

Exploratory testing is an approach to testing that is often misunderstood. Actually it is an approach to testing that emphasizes testers ability to explore an unknown object or area through concurrent test design and test execution. In order to be skillful in it, you need to have several assets that will help you reveal relevant information about the product you’re building. I will share many of the things that I consider essential for a person who wants to understand more about exploratory testing. Talk is focusing a lot on things that have evolved my thinking and therefore helped me be more valuable as a tester. Many of them are also useful for anyone working in software development.

Agile HR

In this speech, Pia-Maria will share experiences from implementing Agile performance management in Volvo Cars worldwide and what the HR challenges are to move from a non-agile to an agile organization. - How can HR support managers and employees and create an agile framework with the right tools and guidelines to create high performance in an ever changing environment? - What are the pitfalls and the success factors and how do you foster a culture where you put the team before yourself? - How important is it to have a good supporting HR/IT-system and what should you think about when investing in an IT-solution that will support an agile way of working?

#NoEmployees - Eliminating the divide between managers and programmers

From collective code ownership to collective ownership, period

#NoEmployees is not a hashtag. Unless you want it to be. It’s not a movement. Unless you want it to be. It’s not a taboo, unless you want it to be.

When Frederick Taylor introduced Scientific Management, he institutionalized the divide between the thinkers, managers, and the doers, workers. That institution spread to software development by the way of Project Management discipline.

The industry wraps itself under very tightly knitted power structures, ranging from projects to organizational charts which mainly exists to subjugate people to a class hierarchy. Projects oppress, organizational charts oppress. The employment relationship ties the hands of both employees and employers.

With Agile, we have tried to close that dividing gap. We have used values, principles and practices to try to achieve that. We have had successes, but they are few and far between. Maybe we need to shake up the power structures more to have a genuine impact?

So let’s change things a bit. Let’s destroy. Let’s say No to employees. Let’s say No to management as well, but management, and employer, is but an employee to customer.

Let’s say no, and bring everyone to collaborate and deliver like never seen before.

Open Space

We left some space for you to have conversations and to reflect the start of the day. Go and have a cup of the best coffee coffee in Finland and talk about the things agile with the other like-minded persons around you. Optionally you can also watch talks from other rooms via provided video streams.