Blog of Rob Galanakis (@robgalanakis)

Archive for January, 2015

How do you estimate that which you’ve never done?

Have you heard about #noestimates? No? Well I’m sure you can guess what it is anyway. But reading the debates reminded me of a story. While at Game Developer’s Conference a few years ago, I was arguing about estimation with a certain project manager, who, despite having no actual...

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Change should be the ally of quality

In The Beauty of Testing, Steven Sinofsky writes: …great testers understand one the cardinal rules of software engineering—- change is the enemy of quality. This is not a cardinal rule. This is a outdated and obsolete mode of thinking. Change is how you discover great UX. Change is how...

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Technical debt metaphors get it so wrong

In my previous post about technical debt, I explained how modern definitions of technical debt are harmful. Now I turn my attention to equally harmful metaphors. Viktoras Makauskas made the following metaphor in a comment on my last post. This is a pretty perfect stand-in for metaphors I’ve read...

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Building Sphinx documentation for unfriendly code

Some Twitter friends were discussing how to get Sphinx to work with mayapy to build documentation for code that runs in Autodesk Maya. I’ve had to do this sort of thing extensively, for both Maya and editor/game code, and have even run an in-house Read The Docs server to...

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Undefining “technical debt”

For me, technical debt is defined pretty loosely as stuff you don’t like in the code and need to change to keep up velocity. However, I’ve seen lots of articles lately discussing a precise definition of “technical debt.” I would sum them up as: Technical debt is incurred intentionally....

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Holiday (product) shipping

This was an interesting holiday season, work-wise, for three reasons. First: My work was closed down from Dec 20th to Jan 4th (except for Customer Support and whichever developer was on firefighting duty, though that is all remote). We shipped two large products on December 17th, which was a...

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