Kanban in daily life

What is Kanban? Read about it at Wikipedia. Basically, it’s a method of visual process management. Often, Post-it Notes are used to signify tasks and they are put on a board…

SEP TeamWorks and Visual Learning

SEP TeamWorks is a tool that lets you view, edit, and create work items for Team Foundation Server 2008, 2010, and 2012. Let me tell you why I like it…

Lighting up Continuous Feedback…

Co-worker 1: “Hey…is our Jenkins even running?” Me: “Uhh, yes? What do you mean?” CW1: “Well, I’ve pushed 3 different commits, and it hasn’t told me that the build failed.”…

SEP Announces Corporate Partnership with Indiana FIRST

Software Engineering Professionals (SEP), along with Indiana’s technical community, has long fought out-of-state companies such as Google and Microsoft in attracting and keeping excellent technology and science minds. In a…

Where have you been all my life?

Someone asked me a few weeks ago how lean/agile (little L, little A) has changed how I worked. At the time, I didn’t think that I’ve changed what I did…

Scaling Communication

This week, I was given a prompt asking “How do you communicate.” My first instinct was, “poorly.” Okay, that’s not strictly true. It’s more like, “obliquely.” I’m more comfortable with…

Make it Real. Make it Simple.

Make it Real. Make it Simple. There is a lesson that keeps becoming apparent the more I practice Agile or Lean methods. Simple is best. To illustrate the point, I…

The 5 Senses in Software

Remember when the launch of the iPhone/iPad made interacting with software through touch truly ubiquitous? It was a magical moment for many people. Isn’t it funny how our children expect…

Lean/Agile Pay It Forward

We have a Pay It Forward Program here at SEP, where we get $50 from the company to do something nice in this season of giving. It can’t go to…

SEP Blog Battle: Tools of the Trade

To whom do I owe any programming success I may have in a given day? My education? My wonderful peers? The shriveled wad of grey goo in my head? None…

Curiosity as a tool

SEP has asked us to write about the tools of our trade. I’m a software engineer at a decently-sized software engineering company, so it’s pretty clear that I have several…

The Design Eye — Tool of the Designer Trade

One of the innate talents of a good designer in any design industry is having a good eye for design. But what does it mean to have a good eye…

Powering Indiana’s Future Panel Discussion

Nov. 14, 2013 Powering Indiana’s Future was a five person panel discussion on the future of energy in the US, the world and particularly Indiana, sponsored by Indiana Business Journal,…

My Favorite Tool That I Struggle With

What tool do I use more often than any other, often while using other tools? What tool am I certain can be an aid in solving almost any problem, if…

What’s in your Utility Belt?

When developing software, we engineers have to use a variety of tools to deliver the right product to our clients. As Batman has practically everything in his utility belt, let’s…

Sometimes the Tools of the Trade Take Time

I’m not a very good woodworker. I rush things. I have a general rule when I do work with wood and saws, I only work for about two to three…

Tools of the Trade

One of my favorite tools is SPSS, which was originally Statistical Package for the Social Sciences, now owned by IBM. I have grown with it over the years, starting appropriately…

SEP Matching Public Donations for Typhoon Haiyan Relief

Software Engineering Professionals (SEP) is saddened by the destruction and devastation caused by last week’s Super Typhoon Haiyan across the Philippines. As we have in the past, SEP and its…

Over the Horizon

Software is a very fluid realm, and the ebbs and flow move quickly. Moore’s Law in hardware is dragging software with it, if the software isn’t already pushing the hardware…

Even With Structure, The Possibilities are Endless

Poetry is an art form based on structure. The pinnacle of poetry studied by most everyone on their high school English class is the sonnet. As a refresher, a sonnet…

The Possibilities Are Endless

The question posed for week one of Blog Bloc is “Where is software development (or at least my area of it) heading?” Let’s posit that my area is data. Big…

Where is the iOS app industry headed?

I’m worried about the iOS app industry. Not because I see signs of Apple dying, but because I know how technology fads go. That, and because I’ve worked on almost…

BioInformatics

I ran across a bioinformatics software development link that might be of interest; I can’t tell how old/live it is, unfortunately. From the wiki on the group: The Bioinformatics Organization, Inc….

The Point of Particularly Personal Personas

The Agile software development movement has a concept called user personas. During a project’s spin-up, developers are encouraged to create these personas as representative users. A typical persona may be…

Android Studio – Not Ready for Primetime

Android Studio is a new IDE that Google has released into Early Access Preview. It is based on the popular IntelliJ editor; the existing development environment relied on an Eclipse…

Twenty-Five Years of SEP

Before Software Engineering Professionals (SEP) had a name or won over its first client, 24-year-old Jeff Gilbert and his three Rose-Hulman buddies were working in unsatisfying jobs, dreaming of creating…

Easily Import and Export Shared Settings

Since SEP TeamWorks was launched over a year ago, the most requested feature is the ability to be able to share the way your board looks with other team members. …

SEP Walks for a Cure

“We make monetary donations to JDRF each year, but it feels a bit impersonal,” begins Engineering Vice President Raman Ohri. “I want SEP to feel personally connected to the causes…

Wearable Cameras

Bloomberg Business article on wearable cameras.

Installing Open Source Android Libraries with Gradle and Android Studio

Android recently started advising developers to use Gradle as their build system for new projects. I don’t really keep up-to-date on the Java ecosystem – and I prefer working in…

Shape Shifter

Excerpts from the BBC: A new shape-changing metal crystal is reported in the journal Nature, by scientists at University of Minnesota. Called a “martensite”, the crystal has two different arrangements…

User Interface Overhaul

We gave SEP TeamWorks a new coat of paint to make it more pleasing to the eye.  The simple and new flat design gives TeamWorks a contemporary and clean look…

Shakin’ All Over

I’ve always been interested in seismic activity: earthquakes and volcanoes. (If you like seismic activity too, check out the new island that formed near Pakistan a few days ago.) I…

SEP COO Traci Dossett named 2013 Indy’s Best and Brightest Winner

Software Engineering Professionals™ (SEP) is excited to announce Traci Dossett has been recognized as the 2013’s Indy’s Best & Brightest winner in the field of Technology. Dossett began at SEP in 1993…

Big Win for Iterative Development

Team Oracle won the America’s Cup [yacht] race for America in one of those thrilling close victories that only come along once in a quarter century. Read about it here…

Is biometric security really secure?

I’m posting this as a response to my colleague’s blog post. Laurie asked whether biometrics as a security mechanism is actually useful. I see biometric security as an excellent mechanism for…

The Finger

Alright, I wasn’t going to blog for awhile to give everyone a break from my voice, but I just have to do it. Check out this article on the Apple…

Dragging Items in Linked Queries

With the launch of SEP TeamWorks’ latest version last Friday, we are showcasing some of the newest features in a series of blog posts.

Fire the Firefighters

Are there fires occurring on your projects? You know the ones: “We have a major delivery coming, and the testers just found 12 new defects.” “The user study uncovered a missing…

Rearranging Project States Using Drag and Drop

With our new version of SEP TeamWorks launching today, we are introducing some of the newest features and giving you easy to follow tips on how to use them.

Wear a Wearable

This is probably not what the blog challenge had in mind, but I’m going to use the opportunity to write about wearable technology…. There are some fun applications out in…

SEP TeamWorks to Launch Latest Version This Month

In our first year we have had several thousand users download and use SEP TeamWorks (TeamWorks).  We have received your feedback, from those proclaiming the tool’s awesomeness to requests for…

SEP, Ping Pong, and PDUs

Want to learn Embedded Programming and Earn PDUs? You may have heard that our ping pong players recently routed the DeveloperTown team and that we are #1 and awesome in…

Morale App blog

Matt Swanson has kindly allowed me to post some of the morale research I have done as a series of blog posts on Morale App. If you were unaware but…

Shades of Grey

As professional football gets back in the swing of things, I’m reminded of one of the iconic plays from the sport: the Hail Mary. You have to score, but you…

Proud Parent of a Young Researcher: Biomarkers Discovery in Patients with Depression

My daughter worked in a lab at the IUPUI med school her last two years of high school, on a project on biomarkers in patients with depression, bipolar disorder and…

Beware of Solving Things Yourself

There’s one recurring thing I’ve seen new hires at SEP struggle with over the years. Most commonly, this is something we see in hires that are fresh out of college,…

All or Nothing – Blog Battle Post Number Three

Eeww. The phrase All or Nothing brings to mind other dramatic phrases, like Do or Die, Do or Do Not, To Be or Not to Be, and …. What was…

2012 Corporate Giving Infographic

The Community Involvement initiative kick started by the four officers at SEP was a chance to put into action the goodwill SEP spreads among its employees and their families. Through…

Oh, Have It Your Way

Upon hearing the blog starter, “Have it your way.” two things came to mind. First was the Burger King commercial jingle that came out while I was a kid. “Have…

Diagnose, Deliver, Delight

Burger King used to have a marketing campaign for “Have It Your Way”. For a restaurant setting, it’s nice to be able to customize the normal menu for our tastes….

“Have It Your Way” Software

Have It Your Way is an iconic slogan from Burger King. Letting the customer pick and chose whatever toppings and condiments they want works really great when you are making…

Have It Your Way – Morale, Cognitive Bias and Thinking, Fast and Slow

You don’t always think what you think you think. You think you are logical and rational. Of course you are. You’re intelligent, educated, productive and have a keen grasp of…

Beware of Assumptions

We’ve all created a persona. We spend time empathizing with this future user of our product to ensure we see the product and experience through their eyes. We think through…

Beware of Group Projects

This post is being manually syndicated from my external blog, Larry Price And The Endless Cup of Coffee, as part of the Back-to-School 2013 SEP Blog Battle. Relying on other…

Beware of Over-Surveying

WE LIVE IN AN INCREASINGLY ALL-CAPS WORLD. It is getting harder and harder to find a quiet place away from all the media hype and advertising. It’s everywhere and even…

Beware of the Simple Things

Beware of the Simple Things: 3 Flags to Look Out for in Domains Your new client already has a requirements document, and has been doing work in the domain for…

Beware of Metaprogramming…

A few Google searches will turn up many different conversations about Metaprogramming…covering the good, the bad, and the beautifully elegant implementations. (I recommend using “-ruby” to filter out all of…

Beware of users

Beware of users! Seriously, those jerks really know how to break things. They’ll use your software in ways you never thought possible. And then it’s your fault when it breaks! How dare…

Course Correction: Beware of Icebergs

A coworker and I were discussing issues that impact a project’s delivery or feature set. While throwing ideas around, I mentioned that we get hit by icebergs that disrupt our…

Beware of Improper Property Usage

Property abuse in C# is a pet peeve of mine. Properties are meant to represent data, and methods are meant to represent actions. When properties are used improperly, you create…

5 Ways All Software Projects are Product Replacements

I was updating my bio at work for the last few projects I’ve been on since I was between projects. I looked back at some of the projects I’ve worked…

3 Easy Steps For Creating Email Filters In Outlook 2013

Tired of getting meeting requests for things that you have no intention of ever attending? Me too! Luckily, rather than just grumble and moan, there’s something you can do about…

Getting the Most Value with a Development Partner

What is software development? When we say software we typically mean a software product to sell to a market or a system to increase productivity. In both cases, doesn’t the…

8 Lessons Learned Importing Legacy Data into a New System

Apparently, it’s not uncommon for business to create some tables in an Access database, pass it around to anyone who needs it, and basically treat it like a big Excel…

Have an NVS 4200M card in your laptop? Here’s how to use the laptop screen as a 3rd monitor

Last year I was issued a new laptop with an nVidia NVS 4200M video card. I was able to to hook two monitors up to it through a docking station…

SEP TeamWorks Turns One

Just over a year ago we launched SEP’s first internal project. Created to address the constraints of the physical Kanban board with on-the-go project management, we wanted to share our…

3Q Book Review: The Return of the Mentor

The Return of the Mentor by Brian J. Caldwell and Earl M. A. Carter What’s the point? For me, this book really drove home 2 major points – new-comers benefit…

5 Content Tips to Make Your Blog Articles Impressively Awesome

Last night I went to a Customer Experience Marketing (CXM) seminar at the JW Marriott in downtown Indianapolis. The free food was amazing, but even better were the presenters. While…

My Summer Experience at SEP Thus Far

Austin Hunkin is a Business Intern and a student at Indiana University studying Finance at the Kelley School of Business. Why Software Engineering Professionals? I asked myself that question when…

Changing the Total Cost Discussion

Discussions with client representatives concerning hourly rates can be frustrating. The belief that an hour of any person’s (or supplier’s) time is exactly the same as any other is like…

MoraleApp Customer Service Aided by Zapier

Hayden Paschen is a Business Intern and a student at Indiana University studying Informatics and Computer Science along with Business. While working on customer service for the MoraleApp I needed…

Failure is Part of Success

I did my tenth Toastmasters speech today which fulfill the requirements for a Competent Communicator Award Here is the speech: “Thomas Edison once said, I have not failed, I’ve just…

3 Hard Steps on How to Fail (you probably can’t do them)

I have many friends who cannot help but win. Everything they do seems to blossom, and sometimes I wonder if they might not be descended from King Midas in some…

SEP: The Next 25 Years

We had a great time in New Orleans for the 25th Anniversary celebration. A few employees asked me where we were going for the 30th.  Given the way I’m wired…

Passionately Driven Development

I started programming because I needed to solve a problem. My former employer was a small college on the south-east side of Indianapolis and they kept all their student’s academic…

Personal Motivation Driven Development

I wanted to feel like I’ve done something cool. You know, something I might be known for. Even if by only a few people outside of my usual network. And…

Fresh Out of Hope? Not Hardly!

It’s been a busy week here at SEP; we’ve had a lot of new faces join us. Seven interns and two new hires in one day (oh and there was another…

Tips for Designers Fresh Out of School

There are already a bunch of articles on the interwebs with advice for designers fresh out of school, so I wanted to share the technical skills I wished I had…

You have to start somewhere

I started fresh in at SEP on Monday and by Tuesday the bananas were fresh out. Fellow new guy Jackson and I were tasked with our first project on Monday…

Ride the Wave

The beginning of summer at SEP usually means new hires.  While a few newbs come from other companies with experience already (so they aren’t really newbs), a lot we hire…

The 30 Second Standup

Originally posted on Matt Swanson’s website The Three Pillars of Standup Meetings: What did you do yesterday? What are you doing today? What is blocking your progress? Everyone stands in…

Pants-less Driven Development – culture matters!

Here at SEP, we talk about our culture and our people…A LOT.  But we back it up with all kinds of events, gatherings, and trips.  These things typically involve food,…

Blog Battle: Narrative Driven Development

Narrative Driven Development If your team has adopted Test Driven Development you may have noticed one of the pain points is that in a reasonably complex system it can become difficult to…

Value Driven Development

When it comes to developing software, you can play buzzword bingo with the processes and methodologies thrown around:  Agile, Scrum, Kanban, Acceptance Test Driven Development, Feature Driven Development, etc.  Some…

Self Driven Development

One of the biggest challenges I have as a designer is how to stay fresh and creative over the span of my entire career — how to stay creative in…

Deadline-Driven Development

Deadlines. We’ve all run into them. We might be talking about a project at work or filing our taxes each year. But deadlines usually get a bad rap. Everyone loves…

SEP at 50?

You may be thinking to yourself “Wait? I thought SEP was celebrating the 25th anniversary this year?” You’d be right. But we’ve been asked to think about what the future…

Blog Battle: The Next 25 Years

A lot of folk may look to 25 years from now with some level of optimism. I ain’t sayin’ they’s wrong, what with them fancy nanotechnologies and printin’ human organs…

Graphic Design in the Next 25 Years

So much has changed in the field of graphic design in the past 25 years, and I’m sure much will change in the next 25. Maybe we will be able…

Where Do You See Yourself in 25 Years?

SEP is celebrating its 25th anniversary of being in business.  Employees of all experiences are reminiscing on the past and speculating on the future. Do you remember when someone (usually a…

SEP Celebrates 25 Years of Culture, Good Practices, and Vision

Hitting the 25-year milestone at SEP is a source of pride. We have built a great company proving that it can and will last. For me, I hit the second…

To Fail or Not to Fail

If you’ve been on this planet longer than a few minutes, then you know how to actively fail. A baby learning that he can control that thing on the end…

How to Fail Creatively

Every so often I find myself having designer’s block. The inspiration is just not there and my creative magic has been depleted. When faced with this block in the past,…

How to Fail, The 500 Blog Battle

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Blog Battle: How to Flail

History Flails have been used as agricultural tools for centuries, typically to thresh grains such as wheat and help separate the chaff, leaving the kernel for consumption or further processing…

How To Fail At Technical Leadership

Most people in technical leadership got there because they demonstrated excellence doing technical things. Unfortunately, technical leadership is a completely different job. It can certainly be learned, but some lessons…

“How to fail” – by avoiding failure…

Why do we, as humans, keep doing the same thing over and over again?  Albert Einstein would call that, insanity. Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again, and…

[I Don’t Know] How to Fail

Except, I suppose, for not trying. “Do or do not; there is no try.” Yoda Test: Given that I am alive, and alive is all about trying, we will ignore…

Failure behind a curtain helps performers to shine in the spotlight

In any profession involving performance (like music or sports), the professionals practice out of sight of their audience. They practice to get better. They push their limits and try things…