When Buying is Better Than Building:
Navigating a complex decision

Asking a developer if she wants to write code is like asking a surgeon if she wants to cut. When facing a build or buy decision for software, it’s best to strategically use developers for technical evaluation but not let them be the final arbiters. The build versus buy decision has only become more complicated over time and requires skill and thoughtfulness to prevent the process from becoming a Lernaean… Read More »When Buying is Better Than Building:
Navigating a complex decision

A CTO’s Unsexy Decisions Matter the Most:
It’s Not All About the Technology Stack

An accomplished CTO spoke to me recently, lamenting the technology stack choice of the previous CTO. She noted the team’s inability to easily deploy software and wondered if the previous CTO’s choices were the cause. A bit of additional probing revealed underlying architectural, design, and quality problems that prevented rapid and safe delivery. Her opinion was that using back-end JavaScript instead of an older language would both open the doors… Read More »A CTO’s Unsexy Decisions Matter the Most:
It’s Not All About the Technology Stack

Quality Series Part Three: Is Continuous Delivery Dead?:
How to Separate Aspiration from Pragmatism for Enterprise Software Releases

High-end Thoughtworks consultants Jez Humble and David Farley wrote the book on Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery (CI/CD). The thought leadership espoused by Martin Fowler, Humble, and Farley around CI/CD provides customers with well-tested, frequent deployments. Dig deeper into Continuous Delivery’s principles, and, interestingly, very few engineering teams follow them. Is Continuous Delivery dead? Part 2 of this series outlines different use cases, some of which lend themselves to Continuous Delivery (CD)… Read More »Quality Series Part Three: Is Continuous Delivery Dead?:
How to Separate Aspiration from Pragmatism for Enterprise Software Releases

Quality Series Part Two: Continous Deployment – Just Because You Can Doesn’t Mean You Should

Nostalgia for simpler times often glosses over the rough edges of the past. We may complain about our COVID-19 isolation, but it’s nothing compared to our ancestors who lived through the Spanish Flu (1918-1920) without internet connectedness. The previous post in this series exposes the negatives of old-time, infrequent software releases while presenting the good and the bad of the current day Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) approach. No matter how… Read More »Quality Series Part Two: Continous Deployment – Just Because You Can Doesn’t Mean You Should

Photo by Hal Gatewood on Unsplash

Quality Series Part One: The Challenge of Customer Experience with Continuous Deployment

A good customer is a disgruntled customer. It’s these squeaky wheel customers who find value in their vendors’ enterprise software products, impatiently waiting for new features. The adoption of Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) pipelines enables ambitious companies to release production software rapidly – sometimes several times a day. Yesteryear’s customers anxiously awaiting new releases now benefit from obtaining hot-off-the-presses features. In an ironic twist, customers now complain about getting blindsided… Read More »Quality Series Part One: The Challenge of Customer Experience with Continuous Deployment

Image Courtesy of RushLane.com

Heavy-Duty Fleets and Sustainability:
Live for the future and Act in the Present

Gladstein, Neandross, & Associates’ State of Sustainable Fleets 2020 Report provides an exhaustive exposé of not just Battery Electric Vehicles, but the state of Hydrogen Fuel Cell, Natural Gas, and Propane trucks, all of which are looming large on the near-term horizon. The Sustainable Fleets Report paints a rosy picture of a sustainable future for heavy-duty trucking, but it also delineates the myriad obstacles to remove before realizing this green nirvana. Sustainable solutions are promising, but the next Diesel engines will continue to dominate for at least the next ten years. What’s a fleet to do in the meantime? Plenty!

Long-Haul Driver Shortages in the Big Brother Era:
5 Ways for Fleets to Stanch the Bleeding

Class 8 truck drivers are a graying breed. According to American Trucking Association’s (ATA) 2019 Truck Driver Shortage Analysis, the average age of long-haul truckers is 46 and the average age of private fleet drivers is 57. The combination of driver retirements and industry growth over this decade will exacerbate already-acute driver shortages and cause supply chain disruptions. The ATA study indicates the current long-haul driver shortage is around 60,000… Read More »Long-Haul Driver Shortages in the Big Brother Era:
5 Ways for Fleets to Stanch the Bleeding

3 Tech Company COVID-19 Silver Linings

Plenty of companies, like hammock makers and inflatable pool manufacturers, are reaping windfalls from the COVID-19 stay-at-home economy. For the vast majority of enterprises, however, their 2020 financial projections are upended and in jeopardy. Even companies that remain financially healthy are defensively crouching because of market uncertainty. Moratoriums on hiring, employee layoffs/furloughs, and salary reductions are the COVID-19 norm. Glass half-empty people see nothing but downside when strategic objectives fall… Read More »3 Tech Company COVID-19 Silver Linings

Deep Learning with Shallow Investment:
A DeepCortex Tutorial

Nowadays, a technology company without a data strategy is akin to a company not having a mobile plan five years ago – completely unacceptable. Around 2005, any company without “big data” was small potatoes. More recently, a company without [you name it]-as-a-service was woefully retrograde. Are technology companies a bunch of sheep that hew to the buzzwords du jour? Absolutely. Is it wise for a contemporary company to forgo a… Read More »Deep Learning with Shallow Investment:
A DeepCortex Tutorial

5 Takeaways From Building a No-Code Website

AI-juiced robots now trounce chess Grandmasters and wallop the best Go players. Robo-umps call balls and strikes more accurately than human umpires. Robots in modern manufacturing plants perform heavy lifting and repetitive tasks with a few supervisory humans on-hand. No-code platforms for websites have become so good, I wonder if computer programmers will eventually join the endangered species list. The following is a personal journey, not a definitive treatise on… Read More »5 Takeaways From Building a No-Code Website