Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-23 Thread Piers Cawley

Chris Heathcote [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 on 22/1/01 6:34 pm, Piers Cawley wrote:
 
  One of the things that I love about the iterative approach of XP is
  that during the process the client begins to learn exactly what she
  wants, and is taught to express that by the team. The idea is to
  create genuine collaboration.
 
 and a complete look of horror on the faces of clients when they
 realise they just don't have a clue :)

Heh. But if we're good at our job we can pull them through that.

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-23 Thread Robin Szemeti

On Tue, 23 Jan 2001, you wrote:

 Heh. But if we're good at our job we can pull them through that.

uhh .. I have on occasion worked with clients that I reckon are the
exception to that rule ...  some of them find lightswitches a technically
challenging problem.

I reckon the XP thing will work for clueful clients (or non clueful
clients who can be lent a clue for a short while) however I reckon you
need another layer of abstraction for totally clueless clients .. there
is a whole class of clients so clueless (' I just want one of those
dot-com things') that you probably need another level of handholding ... 
they discuss the artistic and 'feelgood' bits of the project in as
precise terms as they can and then direct the XP team as the customers
representative. 

A bit like employing an architect to design your new offices ... you
express your ideas, he produces a cardboard model,  you say 'ooh very nice
make it so' and the architect liases with all the contractors .. next
time you see the thing is when they hand over the keys.

I know this goes against the XP idea but I really do think some clients
will not have anywhere near enough clue to work that way .. or even the
time or inclination to do it.  I can see a role of 'architect' being
needed on occasion.

-- 
Robin Szemeti

The box said "requires windows 95 or better"
So I installed Linux!



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-23 Thread Roger Burton West

On or about Tue, Jan 23, 2001 at 12:33:44PM +, Robin Szemeti typed:

there
is a whole class of clients so clueless (' I just want one of those
dot-com things') that you probably need another level of handholding ... 
they discuss the artistic and 'feelgood' bits of the project in as
precise terms as they can and then direct the XP team as the customers
representative. 

http://www.webreview.com/pub/2000/04/07/broken/index.html

Roger



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-23 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

Robin Houston [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Tue, Jan 23, 2001 at 12:49:45PM +, Roger Burton West wrote:
  http://www.webreview.com/pub/2000/04/07/broken/index.html
 
 Eh? I get a four-oh-four.
 
 Did you mean
 http://www.webreview.com/archives/broken/2000/04_07_00.shtml

I like this one:

http://www.waitingforbob.com/index.php/20001130

oooh! h!

-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-23 Thread Roger Burton West

On or about Tue, Jan 23, 2001 at 01:09:40PM +, Robin Houston typed:

Did you mean
http://www.webreview.com/archives/broken/2000/04_07_00.shtml
?

Yes. Been a while since I looked at that one.

R



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-23 Thread Piers Cawley

Robin Szemeti [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Tue, 23 Jan 2001, you wrote:
 
  Heh. But if we're good at our job we can pull them through that.
 
 uhh .. I have on occasion worked with clients that I reckon are the
 exception to that rule ... some of them find lightswitches a
 technically challenging problem.
 
 I reckon the XP thing will work for clueful clients (or non clueful
 clients who can be lent a clue for a short while) however I reckon
 you need another layer of abstraction for totally clueless clients
 .. there is a whole class of clients so clueless (' I just want one
 of those dot-com things') that you probably need another level of
 handholding ... they discuss the artistic and 'feelgood' bits of the
 project in as precise terms as they can and then direct the XP team
 as the customers representative.
 
 A bit like employing an architect to design your new offices ... you
 express your ideas, he produces a cardboard model, you say 'ooh very
 nice make it so' and the architect liases with all the contractors
 .. next time you see the thing is when they hand over the keys.
 
 I know this goes against the XP idea but I really do think some
 clients will not have anywhere near enough clue to work that way ..
 or even the time or inclination to do it. I can see a role of
 'architect' being needed on occasion.

I would say that part of the sales process should include weeding out
those kinds of clients. If it turns out that there aren't any we can
find with a clue, then the fun begins, but I'd like to think that the
market is large.

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-23 Thread Robin Szemeti

On Tue, 23 Jan 2001, you wrote:

 I would say that part of the sales process should include weeding out
 those kinds of clients. If it turns out that there aren't any we can
 find with a clue, then the fun begins, but I'd like to think that the
 market is large.

;)))

Dear Sirs, 

Thank you for your enquiry requesting our services. 

After our meeting yesterday and some careful consideration by the
management team it turns out you are just too damn dumb.  We have worked
with chewing gum brighter than you.

Please go away.

Yours etc, 


Shall I knock it out as a template .. it could come in handy :))

-- 
Robin Szemeti

The box said "requires windows 95 or better"
So I installed Linux!



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Roger Burton West

On or about Sun, Jan 21, 2001 at 11:08:29PM +, Piers Cawley typed:

And if the Big Cheese does hand down decisions that override the
Minion then the contract between developer and client should stipulate
that the client pays for the wasted time.

Contracts _should_ say that the client pays for changes to what he
originally said he wanted. Sometimes they do. It's quite rare, in my
experience, for this payment actually to be demanded. (Usually some
excuse along the lines of "it's a big customer and we don't want to
annoy them".) This XP approach seems to require a lot more firmness
in customer relations than I've ever seen - and if that firmness were
present, we wouldn't need XP anyway...

Roger



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Mark Fowler

Roger claimed that:

 This XP approach seems to require a lot more firmness
 in customer relations than I've ever seen - and if that firmness were
 present, we wouldn't need XP anyway...

One of the main problems with full disclosure with the client is that it
can only ever work when you've only got one client.  In my job you tend to
be working on more than one project at any given time;  I certainly don't
think I'd like to be the one to tell the client 'sorry this is late, but
there was this unexpected problem with some work we were doing for another
client and it took up all our time'.

Later.

Mark.

-- 
print "\n",map{my$a="\n"if(length$_6);' 'x(36-length($_)/2)."$_\n$a"} (
   Name  = 'Mark Fowler',Title = 'Technology Developer'  ,
   Firm  = 'Profero Ltd',Web   = 'http://www.profero.com/'   ,
   Email = '[EMAIL PROTECTED]',   Phone = '+44 (0) 20 7700 9960'  )








Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread James O'Sullivan

On Mon, 22 Jan 2001, Michael Stevens wrote:
 On Mon, Jan 22, 2001 at 08:47:35AM +, Roger Burton West wrote:
  Contracts _should_ say that the client pays for changes to what he
  originally said he wanted. Sometimes they do. It's quite rare, in my
  experience, for this payment actually to be demanded. (Usually some
  excuse along the lines of "it's a big customer and we don't want to
  annoy them".) This XP approach seems to require a lot more firmness
 
 I've also found a lot of customers are absolute *geniuses* at fudging the
 issue of what they did and didn't agree to, no matter how specific
 you attempt to be.


All changes no matter how small should be passed through a change control
process, normally put in place by the project manager assigned to that
specific job.

A change control document will normally be produced which will detail what
the client wants, how much it will cost and what the effects are on the
project timeline.  This will need to be read and physically signed off by
the client before any work is undertaken.

This, in theory, should make the client think whether they really need
this "small change" or if it can wait until a later date.  It also gives
you some ammo if the client changes their mind as there should be no
ambiguity.

--
James





Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Mark Fowler

On Mon, 22 Jan 2001, Leon Brocard wrote:
 Dave Mee sent the following bits through the ether:
  One of the best solutions I've come accross to this problem is to take an
  iterative approach to development.
 
 Inded. Look at XP. The whole idea is that at the end of every day /
 week you have changed something and can show it to the client
 again. This way the client really understands what he really wants.

This even works well if you are working on projects for yourself.  It's a
very good way of maintaining focus and not going off on tangents when
you're programming.

Later.

Mark.

-- 
print "\n",map{my$a="\n"if(length$_6);' 'x(36-length($_)/2)."$_\n$a"} (
   Name  = 'Mark Fowler',Title = 'Technology Developer'  ,
   Firm  = 'Profero Ltd',Web   = 'http://www.profero.com/'   ,
   Email = '[EMAIL PROTECTED]',   Phone = '+44 (0) 20 7700 9960'  )








Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Dave Cross

At Mon, 22 Jan 2001 10:42:46 +, Leon Brocard [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 Dave Mee sent the following bits through the ether:
 
  One of the best solutions I've come accross to this problem is to 
  take an
  iterative approach to development.
 
 Inded. Look at XP. The whole idea is that at the end of every day /
 week you have changed something and can show it to the client
 again. This way the client really understands what he really wants.

And if you don't want to buy the XP books, but want to know more...

http://www.extremeprogramming.org/

Dave...



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Simon Wistow

Andy Wardley wrote:

 Having said that, I do very little "real" work at work, instead
 spending my time reading/writing email, chatting to people, playing
 table tennis, having meetings, and doing other brain dead tasks.

I sometimes feel guilty because 90% of my work gets done in 10% of my
time. 

I mean I *know* I can pull out the stops and work my arse off for
extended periods of time but I can't seem to get myself to get into work
at 9:30am work till lunch, 45 mins having a sandwich then work till
5:30-6:00pm and still be productive. In fact now I don't think I could
do it at all.  But I get my work done and people seem to be happy with
the quality and how fats it gets delivered so ... shrugs



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Michael Stevens

On Mon, Jan 22, 2001 at 10:26:18AM +, James O'Sullivan wrote:
 On Mon, 22 Jan 2001, Michael Stevens wrote:
  On Mon, Jan 22, 2001 at 08:47:35AM +, Roger Burton West wrote:
   Contracts _should_ say that the client pays for changes to what he
   originally said he wanted. Sometimes they do. It's quite rare, in my
   experience, for this payment actually to be demanded. (Usually some
   excuse along the lines of "it's a big customer and we don't want to
   annoy them".) This XP approach seems to require a lot more firmness
  
  I've also found a lot of customers are absolute *geniuses* at fudging the
  issue of what they did and didn't agree to, no matter how specific
  you attempt to be.
 
 
 All changes no matter how small should be passed through a change control
 process, normally put in place by the project manager assigned to that
 specific job.
 
 A change control document will normally be produced which will detail what
 the client wants, how much it will cost and what the effects are on the
 project timeline.  This will need to be read and physically signed off by
 the client before any work is undertaken.

a) you need to be able to persuade management this is a good idea

b) you need to get someone writing specs who is actually able to be specific.
And you need to have some way of dealing with a client who will refuse to
pay until you implement something that they say is contained within the
spec, and you don't. Despite the fact you're both reading the same spec.

From memories of my last job, both of these can be a problem.

Michael



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Leon Brocard

Mark Fowler sent the following bits through the ether:

 Two points:

Picky, picky. Fine. I'd say that of the bits I've tested, I've found
that continuous testing is a very important part. Writing the tests
before the code is cool too. But you know this already ;-)

Leon
-- 
Leon Brocard.http://www.astray.com/
yapc::Europehttp://yapc.org/Europe/

... For Sale: Slightly used message. Enquire within



Re: Consultancy company- Where do you want to go?

2001-01-22 Thread Robert Shiels

 So who's bankrolling the van and who wants to be BA?

 Neil.
 (whose tounge is ever so slightly on his cheek!)
 --
Sorry, but I can't resist pointing out that this amusing misspelling. I
guess I'd pronounce this a bit like lounge. Tongue is a pretty stupid way to
spell it anyway, tung would be better.

Now back to your regular (extreme) programming.

/Robert




Re: Consultancy company- Where do you want to go?

2001-01-22 Thread Greg Cope

Neil Ford wrote:
 
 
 The "A-Team" - scenario is one in which a team goes in to rescue a failing
 project, or go in and retune/redesign an existing project that works but has
 become a victim of its own success.  Think of this work as bespoke
 enhancements.
 
 That just has me conjering up images of turning up at a client site
 in a big black van (screeching tyres obligatory) and either leaping
 out laptops in hand or just unrollong some CAT5 and plugging into
 their network :-)
 
 So who's bankrolling the van and who wants to be BA?

lol - monday's been c*** so far (Linx rooter down apparently - sounds
like something off an excuse sheet).

Men in black theme - we must all have black suits - dark glasses
avliable from Macy D's soon, and we can get a clapped out van from BT
for next to nothing 

Greg 


 
 Neil.
 (whose tounge is ever so slightly on his cheek!)
 --
 Neil C. Ford
 [EMAIL PROTECTED]
 http://www.binky.ourshack.org



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Steve Mynott

Robin Szemeti [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Mon, 22 Jan 2001, you wrote:
 
  Inded. Look at XP. The whole idea is that at the end of every day /
  week you have changed something and can show it to the client
  again. This way the client really understands what he really wants.
 
 wow ... "a client that understands what they want"  ... Mr Brocard,
 for gods sake WALK to the meeting, DO NOT drive. I have no idea what
 you're taking but I want some .. do you get to see little blue spacemen
 too ;))

Further to this most clients aren't even interested in understanding
what they want (that's _your_ job).

They just _want_ it.

-- 
1024/D9C69DF9 steve mynott [EMAIL PROTECTED]

imagination is more important than knowledge. -- albert einstein



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Steve Mynott

Simon Wistow [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 I sometimes feel guilty because 90% of my work gets done in 10% of my
 time. 

There is in fact Pareto's Law which says that 80% of results come from
20% of work (or 10-90 or whatever the numbers don't really matter).

No need to feel guilty since this is the way things are.

-- 
1024/D9C69DF9 steve mynott [EMAIL PROTECTED]

reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.
-- philip k. dick



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

Mark Fowler [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

  2. I first heard about building at the end of the day in Brooke's
 Mythical Man Month.

Continuous integration and smoke testing. Oh yes.

-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

Robin Szemeti [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 The overiding thing should be 'make this the very best company to work
 for AND the very best company to have work done by' A1 bleeding edge code
 written by the planets happiest programmers ... sounds like a good recipe
 to me. 

Not sure about the bleeding edge part, but certainly "using the
highest productivity techniques known to man" would certainly rank
high up there.

-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

Robin Szemeti [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 and this template toolit thing rocks dunnit .. (now I have the hang of it
 .. sorta)

It is the rockingest thing I've rocked to since the last one.


-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Consultancy company- Where do you want to go?

2001-01-22 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

Greg Cope [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 Men in black theme - we must all have black suits - dark glasses
 avliable from Macy D's soon, and we can get a clapped out van from BT
 for next to nothing 

Don't forget the welding gear.

Actually, I'm more for the Ghostbusters theme: boiler suits, handhled
nuclear weapons, a disused fire station and an ambulance.


-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Robert Shiels



 Simon Wistow [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

  I sometimes feel guilty because 90% of my work gets done in 10% of my
  time.

 There is in fact Pareto's Law which says that 80% of results come from
 20% of work (or 10-90 or whatever the numbers don't really matter).


Often, when I do something that I consider really easy and spend little
effort on it, I get lots of really good feedback. Alternatively if I spend
weeks on a trickey problem, no one says anything. This seems like a similar
rule.

C'est la vie.

/Robert




RE: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Jonathan Peterson

  There is in fact Pareto's Law which says that 80% of
 results come from
  20% of work (or 10-90 or whatever the numbers don't really matter).
 

 Often, when I do something that I consider really easy and
 spend little
 effort on it, I get lots of really good feedback.

Glad I'm not the only one. I spend three days futzing around unable to get
stuck into a problem, and then eventually manage a decent half days work to
get it done before the deadline. Then, while I'm worrying about having
wasted 2 1/2 days someone comes and says what a good document it was. I
don't get it.

I wouldn't mind if it weren't for the way other people in the office seem to
beaver away steadily.




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Piers Cawley

"James O'Sullivan" [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Mon, 22 Jan 2001, Michael Stevens wrote:
  On Mon, Jan 22, 2001 at 08:47:35AM +, Roger Burton West wrote:
   Contracts _should_ say that the client pays for changes to what he
   originally said he wanted. Sometimes they do. It's quite rare, in my
   experience, for this payment actually to be demanded. (Usually some
   excuse along the lines of "it's a big customer and we don't want to
   annoy them".) This XP approach seems to require a lot more firmness
  
  I've also found a lot of customers are absolute *geniuses* at fudging the
  issue of what they did and didn't agree to, no matter how specific
  you attempt to be.
 
 
 All changes no matter how small should be passed through a change control
 process, normally put in place by the project manager assigned to that
 specific job.
 
 A change control document will normally be produced which will detail what
 the client wants, how much it will cost and what the effects are on the
 project timeline.  This will need to be read and physically signed off by
 the client before any work is undertaken.
 
 This, in theory, should make the client think whether they really need
 this "small change" or if it can wait until a later date.  It also gives
 you some ammo if the client changes their mind as there should be no
 ambiguity.

The XP approach to this goes something like:

Client: We want this. 
Team: Write it on a card. 
Client: Writes There you go. 
Team: This will take 'm' days to implement. We have n  m days available
  in this iteration, do you want this in this iteration.

or

Team: This will take m days to implement. We have n  m days in this
  iteration. If this goes in, which ones to we take out?

And the client makes the decision.

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Piers Cawley

Michael Stevens [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Mon, Jan 22, 2001 at 10:26:18AM +, James O'Sullivan wrote:
  On Mon, 22 Jan 2001, Michael Stevens wrote:
   On Mon, Jan 22, 2001 at 08:47:35AM +, Roger Burton West wrote:
Contracts _should_ say that the client pays for changes to what he
originally said he wanted. Sometimes they do. It's quite rare, in my
experience, for this payment actually to be demanded. (Usually some
excuse along the lines of "it's a big customer and we don't want to
annoy them".) This XP approach seems to require a lot more firmness
   
   I've also found a lot of customers are absolute *geniuses* at fudging the
   issue of what they did and didn't agree to, no matter how specific
   you attempt to be.
  
  
  All changes no matter how small should be passed through a change control
  process, normally put in place by the project manager assigned to that
  specific job.
  
  A change control document will normally be produced which will detail what
  the client wants, how much it will cost and what the effects are on the
  project timeline.  This will need to be read and physically signed off by
  the client before any work is undertaken.
 
 a) you need to be able to persuade management this is a good idea
 
 b) you need to get someone writing specs who is actually able to be specific.
 And you need to have some way of dealing with a client who will
 refuse to pay until you implement something that they say is
 contained within the spec, and you don't. Despite the fact you're
 both reading the same spec.

Keep the specs/stories simple. If the team is unsure of what a story
means then they need to go back to the client for clarification, and
possibly to have the requirement broken down into simpler bits. As
time passes in the project, the client will get better at writing
requirements. And we'll get better at estimating how long they'll take
to implement.

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-22 Thread Piers Cawley

Robin Szemeti [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Mon, 22 Jan 2001, you wrote:
 
  Inded. Look at XP. The whole idea is that at the end of every day /
  week you have changed something and can show it to the client
  again. This way the client really understands what he really wants.
 
 wow ... "a client that understands what they want"  ... Mr Brocard,
 for gods sake WALK to the meeting, DO NOT drive. I have no idea what
 you're taking but I want some .. do you get to see little blue spacemen
 too ;))
 
 nah seriously.. if XP can really achieve this then great .. I hope
 it can .. infact I almost believe it can ... a little voice in my
 head keeps saying 'please let this be true' .. but sometimes when
 people come up with such abstract ideas as 'a client that
 understands what they want' I do begin to wonder if its not pushing
 it a bit far ;))

One of the things that I love about the iterative approach of XP is
that during the process the client begins to learn exactly what she
wants, and is taught to express that by the team. The idea is to
create genuine collaboration.

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company- Where do you want to go?

2001-01-21 Thread Mark Townsend

What sort of work do you want to do?  What sort of business do you seek?
Body shop, A-Team or bespoke software house?

This message generated a few threads:  Working from home v office; pair
programming vs traditional project "individual portions"; and handling
client contact or involvement.  These issues are all related to winning a
project from a client and going away to develop it (bespoke software?).

At least one earlier message concerned body-shopping i.e. putting a bunch of
developers into a site e.g. an investment bank and hiring them out on time
and materials basis.  This replaces the agents with your own salesman, then
gets the team members into sites as contractors (there are many small to
medium sized consultancies in this market sector).

A lot of the messages seem to be based on the developers dream of working
with a bunch of drinking buddies (generally a good thing) and seem to assume
a software house type of business.  This model is for fixed price work with
whole projects paid on delivery of the project or stages thereof and
variation orders.

The "A-Team" - scenario is one in which a team goes in to rescue a failing
project, or go in and retune/redesign an existing project that works but has
become a victim of its own success.  Think of this work as bespoke
enhancements.

Unless someone brings some business to the venture (e.g. a client with a
requirement or an idea for a new software invention with sufficient
funding), the venture will need someone to bring in the business.

If the venture has a mix of bespoke software and body-shopping then the
premises will not need a desk for every member to be in the office
concurrently (at any time. some will be out at client site).

Usually within a fixed length contract there may be times when a contractor
needs to get some more work from the client.  At such times the worker
attends project meetings and planning sessions which are part of the job and
are paid.   A consultancy must attend meetings and discuss project
requirements in order to win business.  Fees will need to cover the
consultancy for periods off charge, so basing project costs on say charging
sixty pounds per developer hour will not cover all the costs.

So, at the meeting, I suggest a few questions for the agenda:  What sort of
business do you expect to win?

What funding have you (living of savings until you get money in)?

How do you want to spend your savings (office space, salesman, equipment)?

Mark




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-21 Thread Piers Cawley

Robin Szemeti [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Sat, 20 Jan 2001, you wrote:
 
  I don't see why you can't have a mix - it would be good to have a core
  group of people who always (nearl) work in the office so that if you
  usually work from home but need some face 2 face there will be people
  there (or in a pub nearby). things like IRC and email provide good
  communication about what is going on and can be used to acounce when and
  where people are.
 
 thats true enough .. although it doesn't fit in with the XP model that
 well .. but there is always MOTWTDI  ..  the basic problem is that
 'office' workers see 'home' workers as a bunch of idle slackers who only
 pretend to work from home and really spend the day gardening, and 'home'
 workers see 'office' workers as bunch of people who;d rather spend the day
 arseing about and chatting than actually doing something .. 

I rush to point out that those stereotypes were *not* what I was on
about in my "I'm really unsure about telecommuting" thing. I'm one of
the gregarious types.

-- 
Piers





Re: Extreme Programming (was: Re: Consultancy company)

2001-01-21 Thread Piers Cawley

David Cantrell [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Sat, Jan 20, 2001 at 12:24:24AM +, Piers Cawley wrote:
 
  Now, I freely admit that I have partaken of the Extreme Programming
  Kool-Aid, and dammit I want to do it.
 
 I want to try it too.  I'm not convinced by all of it - pair programming
 for example - but so much of the other stuff seems damned sensible that
 I want to give it a go.  Including pair programming.  I'm trying to keep
 an open mind on that fucking stupid idea.

When they got the permie in who's taking over the project I'd been
working on, we spent a fair amount of time doing the PP thing. And it
was great. A *fantastic* way of getting information shared and passed
on for what was basically a decently engineered but atrociously
documented project. By the time I left, James knew his way around the
system and was confident he could extend it as required. And I was
confident he was right about that. (Did my ego good to know I'd
written something without sanity checking that was relatively easy for
someone to pick up quickly too...)

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-21 Thread Piers Cawley

Robin Szemeti [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Sat, 20 Jan 2001, you wrote:
  
  One customer. On site. Full time. Absolute honesty. Get them on your
  side. The are the people who are *paying* for this, they deserve
  nothing but your honesty. Tell 'em about any problems and tell 'em
  early. Tell 'em about successes and tell 'em early. Get the customer
  rep onside and you have an advocated. Treat the customers like a
  mushrooms and you don't get repeat business.
 
 sounds great ... when do we start.
 
 Seriously XP sounds like it should work .. I read the books I was
 convinced.
 
 The only thing that occasioanlly worries me about it is that my current
 client is still working his way up to being a mushroom. Apart from that
 the client has a total staff of 5. I cant see them sparing 20% of their
 workforce in order to sit and keep the developers comapny. Worse still I
 have not yet had a decision on anything in less than 24hrs. I think that
 would haold true even if they were on site too.
 
 So I am really keen to do an XP managed project ... if it really does
 work then that sfantastic, best result I could ever have. I suspect that
 it fails, just in different ways to other project managment systems.
 
 obvious ones:
 
 The client doesn;t send Big Chief to sit with the designers, instead

'designers' is kind of the wrong term with XP. 

 they send Useless Minion. UM is positive and helpful and gives quick
 decisions ona whole variety of topics. And a week later turns up
 with changes handed down by Big Chief overiding those decisions.
 worse still the decisions handed down make no sense because he
 hasn;t been with the team and doesn;t undrstand whats going on.

This one is, potentially a problem. I'd say that, as a company
consulting with the company you make *bloody* sure that the client is
aware of the importance of the 'on site' customer, and of their status
as final arbiter. It's also stressed that the OSC can say "I'll get
back to you on that", but a lot of the time questions that need to be
answered are uncontroversial and can be answered trivially even by a
UM.

And because the XP approach advocates code that passes its tests at
all times, the political value of something that is actually doing
stuff can be useful too.

And if the Big Cheese does hand down decisions that override the
Minion then the contract between developer and client should stipulate
that the client pays for the wasted time.

And if this does happen then we should learn from this how to improve
our 'client interview' process. Which kind of implies that our sales
teams should work pairwise as well so that there's experienced
developers in on the interview too.

 Client has no concept about what software development is like and within
 a week or two cancels the entire thing 'some of those guys spent a whole
 week working and half the time couldnt even get it to run, by the end of
 the week all they'd done was write some strange "library" code and even
 that doesn;t seem to do anything'

Remember that, with the XP approach, library code doesn't get written so
much as it kind of happens. If you don't need it *now* you don't write
it. Add functionality as you require it.

 
 but hey .. next person organising a XP based project that needs a junior
 perl hacker .. gimme a shout .. 




Re: Extreme Programming (was: Re: Consultancy company)

2001-01-21 Thread Piers Cawley

"Dean S Wilson" [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 -Original Message-
 From: Aaron Trevena [EMAIL PROTECTED]
 
 
 I did a little pair programming at emap - I probably wasn't doing it
 right
 tho'. even so we did get thru the hard bits quicker and could split
 up to
 do the easy stuff. I think it made a difference but then I was mostly
 being a backseat coder so either we did okay or stuart was very
 tolerant
 indeed.
 
 
 How did you establish who would make good pairings? Was it done by
 trying to place two equals or was it done more on a mentoring level of
 a very experienced coder and a less experienced one? (I've not read
 that much on XP)

The Dictum in the XP literature appears to be 'nobody is allowed to
say "No"', pairs form and re form on task by task basis. 'Regular'
pairs are to be discouraged. XP Installed has a bunch of stuff on
this.

 Has anyone who's used XP had a client that was willing to make an
 employee available pretty much full time or was it more they come in
 for a chunk of the afternoon three times a week? I have an issue with
 the fact that clients will be willing to pay a member of staff to
 spend all day in the consultants office in case they need to be asked
 questions.

The XP argument goes something like:

This team costs you X000/day. Your liason costs you X00/day. We
believe that having someone available to us, on site, full time (but
able to do however much of their work that can be done remotely), will
dramatically reduce the amount of our time it takes to deliver a
product, and will also increase the final value of that product. Do
the maths. (Well, maybe not quite so bluntly, but you take my point) 

 I'm not saying its a bad thing to have someone on hand, I can see
 its uses but from the clients point of view why not just have
 contact by phone/email. That was the liaison has access to everyone
 in his base office so he can resolve issues faster with more
 authority than if he were in your offices. Also you have a paper
 trail of requests, questions and responses.

There's a whole chapter on this in XP Installed. Paraphrasing,

  "Customer onsite == answer in 30 seconds.
   Customer offsite == answer today."

They also point out that you can make either version work, but the
onsite customer option works best.

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-21 Thread Robin Szemeti

On Sun, 21 Jan 2001, you wrote:

 I rush to point out that those stereotypes were *not* what I was on
 about in my "I'm really unsure about telecommuting" thing. I'm one of
 the gregarious types.

acknowledged ...

those 'stereotypes' where pretty extreme and I am sure there are other
issues on both sides

my basic thrust was however: don't discount any possibilities ... lets
open doors not close them before we even get there. Personally I am quite
happy to do the office based thing, I don;t have a problem with it. I
also enjoy doing the home thing.  

Different working methods suit different people and different projects.
Surely the best outcome is success, success = happiness and happiness =
enjoying what you are doing.  One of the best things about having your own
consultancy is surely that there is no PHB laying down cast iron rules,
sure what we do has to make VERY good business sense and  be based on
sound policies that we can all agree to but lets try and keep things
'open'. flexi-time, pinball machines, games room .. whatever .. if its
reasonable then do it. 

The overiding thing should be 'make this the very best company to work
for AND the very best company to have work done by' A1 bleeding edge code
written by the planets happiest programmers ... sounds like a good recipe
to me. 

-- 
Robin Szemeti

The box said "requires windows 95 or better"
So I installed Linux!



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-21 Thread Robin Szemeti

On Sun, 21 Jan 2001, you wrote:

  The client doesn;t send Big Chief to sit with the designers, instead
 
 'designers' is kind of the wrong term with XP. 

agreed

  they send Useless Minion. UM is positive and helpful and gives quick
  decisions ona whole variety of topics. And a week later turns up
  with changes handed down by Big Chief overiding those decisions.
  worse still the decisions handed down make no sense because he
  hasn;t been with the team and doesn;t undrstand whats going on.
 
 This one is, potentially a problem. I'd say that, as a company
 consulting with the company you make *bloody* sure that the client is
 aware of the importance of the 'on site' customer, and of their status
 as final arbiter. It's also stressed that the OSC can say "I'll get
 back to you on that", but a lot of the time questions that need to be
 answered are uncontroversial and can be answered trivially even by a
 UM.

in my experience getting simlpe concepts across to large and
important clients can sometimes be difficult when a) the subject has a
funny word in it like 'computer' and b) they don't know what that word
means.

I just can;t help wondering if it will work .. if it does then I will be
no 1 happy bunny. I have XP installed sitting right here and tagged up
for a re-read this week (i'm having a month or so off to recover from a
12 month period of development with little breaks) ... 

and this template toolit thing rocks dunnit .. (now I have the hang of it
.. sorta)

-- 
Robin Szemeti

The box said "requires windows 95 or better"
So I installed Linux!



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-20 Thread Rob Partington

In message [EMAIL PROTECTED],
Piers Cawley [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
[snip]
  And table football's no fun if you're playing with
 yourself. 

Maybe if you kept your hands on the table football...?  gdr
-- 
rob partington % [EMAIL PROTECTED] % http://lynx.browser.org/



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-20 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

Roger Burton West [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Sat, Jan 20, 2001 at 12:24:24AM +, Piers Cawley wrote:
 
 The vision I have is of a team (or teams) working in *our* premises,
 with customers working with us.
 
 (side-rant)
 The customers _must_ be kept isolated from the developers. This is
 the single most important thing the customer-interface people
 (whatever you call them) can do. Inviting the customers into your office
 will drop productivity by 30-50% because your developers can't talk
 honestly about what's going on.

That's exactly wrong.

And the XP book explains why far better than I ever could.

-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-20 Thread Redvers Davies

 IIRC, Sim City is one of Ken Livingstone's favorites.

There can't be the option to revoke all bird feed sellers permits.



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-20 Thread Roger Burton West

On Sat, Jan 20, 2001 at 10:28:13AM +, Piers Cawley wrote:

One customer. On site. Full time. Absolute honesty.

Nice idea if you have customers who can take the truth, and who know
when to shut up and let people get on with things. I'd like to see
it working, but I haven't yet.

R



Extreme Programming (was: Re: Consultancy company)

2001-01-20 Thread David Cantrell

On Sat, Jan 20, 2001 at 12:24:24AM +, Piers Cawley wrote:

 Now, I freely admit that I have partaken of the Extreme Programming
 Kool-Aid, and dammit I want to do it.

I want to try it too.  I'm not convinced by all of it - pair programming
for example - but so much of the other stuff seems damned sensible that
I want to give it a go.  Including pair programming.  I'm trying to keep
an open mind on that fucking stupid idea.

-- 
David Cantrell | [EMAIL PROTECTED] | http://www.cantrell.org.uk/david/

   Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-20 Thread Robin Szemeti

On Sat, 20 Jan 2001, you wrote:

 I don't see why you can't have a mix - it would be good to have a core
 group of people who always (nearl) work in the office so that if you
 usually work from home but need some face 2 face there will be people
 there (or in a pub nearby). things like IRC and email provide good
 communication about what is going on and can be used to acounce when and
 where people are.

thats true enough .. although it doesn't fit in with the XP model that
well .. but there is always MOTWTDI  ..  the basic problem is that
'office' workers see 'home' workers as a bunch of idle slackers who only
pretend to work from home and really spend the day gardening, and 'home'
workers see 'office' workers as bunch of people who;d rather spend the day
arseing about and chatting than actually doing something .. 

Break down those totally incorrect stereotypes and you're on the way to a
flexible poicy that allows you to retain the very best staff in
conditions they enjoy. Shurely one of the driving decisions behind
setting up a mutual business is not just financial success but also good
working conditions and more freedom. I gladly trade lower income for
better working conditions any day (to a point anyway). My basic break
even is at about 30K a year .. once I get to that poijt I start taking
holidays. Money is great, but chilling out by the pool is better and
skiing is better still [speaking of which its Chamonix again in 2 weeks]

just my $1 / (2500^0.5)

-- 
Robin Szemeti

The box said "requires windows 95 or better"
So I installed Linux!



Re: Extreme Programming (was: Re: Consultancy company)

2001-01-20 Thread Dean S Wilson

-Original Message-
From: Aaron Trevena [EMAIL PROTECTED]


I did a little pair programming at emap - I probably wasn't doing it
right
tho'. even so we did get thru the hard bits quicker and could split
up to
do the easy stuff. I think it made a difference but then I was mostly
being a backseat coder so either we did okay or stuart was very
tolerant
indeed.


How did you establish who would make good pairings? Was it done by
trying to place two equals or was it done more on a mentoring level of
a very experienced coder and a less experienced one? (I've not read
that much on XP)

Has anyone who's used XP had a client that was willing to make an
employee available pretty much full time or was it more they come in
for a chunk of the afternoon three times a week? I have an issue with
the fact that clients will be willing to pay a member of staff to
spend all day in the consultants office in case they need to be asked
questions. I'm not saying its a bad thing to have someone on hand, I
can see its uses but from the clients point of view why not just have
contact by phone/email. That was the liaison has access to everyone in
his base office so he can resolve issues faster with more authority
than if he were in your offices. Also you have a paper trail of
requests, questions and responses.

Is the Monday night meeting still on for those of us who can't make
the lunch time one?

Dean
--
Profanity is the one language all programmers understand.
   ---  Anon




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-20 Thread Greg Cope

Piers Cawley wrote:
 
 Greg Cope [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 
  David Cantrell wrote:
  
 
  That should read there's too many distractions at home for me  (or
  you as the case may be).
 
  I am about 150% more productive at home - 25 % because I save the
  journey, and the other 25% due to not having to go to meetings /
  going for long lunches / the chat that turns into a tangenical
  discussion on XZY / some Luser or PBH asking a stupid question that
  they could have worked out themselves if I was not there / insert
  any other activity that takes me away from the task in hand.
 
 The vision I have is of a team (or teams) working in *our* premises,
 with customers working with us. We avoid pointless meetings. The
 customer is there because they know what we're supposed to be doing
 for them, and they know what's important. When you're only working a
 35 hour week (40 tops...) then you should have enough free time
 outside work that there's less inclination to piss off for a long
 lunch. And the whole point about setting this up is to get rid of the
 PHB.
 
  Sorry the above turned into a rant, I just get a bit pissed off with
  closed minds that assume that having people in an office =
  productivity.
 
 *Ahem*. Were I to be the sort of person who takes things personally,
 I'd take that personally. Or something.
 
 Seriously, I tried working from home when the trains were up the
 spout, and for a couple or three days it was great. However, one or
 two points.
 
 1. As a sole developer, working from home is/can be good, especially
when your head is down and you're turning out the code for a
particular bit. But working from home means you're away from the
customer, and the customer is the only person who can make business
decisions about what your code is supposed to be doing.

I've never said that I do not meet customers on a face to face basis
arround once a week.

Working as I do means that the customer and I focus on the specs, and
iterative developement - as they need to be clear that I know what I am
supposed to do.

 
 2. You are away from the team. Again, sole developer, this is not a
problem. Consultancy where we're supposed to be doing the synergy
thing, not quite so good. Time you spend away is time in which you
aren't plugged into what's happening and (and this is *really*
important), time spent away is time in which you aren't doing the
mentor thing. I strongly believe that, in a joint consultancy deal,
it is *really* important that gurus help to enlighten students,
otherwise how do we get our partners up to speed so we can go out
and get more fun work and make more fun money?

Agreed that if you need to teach - guru and student need to be in the
same place.

 
 3. Every time I need to ask you something and you're not there and I
have to phone you, there's a chance I'll think 'ah fuck it' and not
bother. And there's a chance that that will be a *really* bad idea.

But if you are confortable phoneing (|emailing|irc) me then you would -
as that is how we would need to comunicate.  I've wasted so much time
being in an office being asked and asking lame questions just because I
am next to someone. 

I have much less distractions at home.

 
 I'm not saying that offices (especially client offices) don't suck.
 But they don't have to. If we're going to do this, lets do it right.
 
 Now, I freely admit that I have partaken of the Extreme Programming
 Kool-Aid, and dammit I want to do it. But dammit again, it makes
 *sense*. Also bear in mind that when I made the decision (having tried
 it) that I'd rather commute in and be near the customer rather than
 work from home (in my *very* comfortable home office...) that meant
 adding another 4 hours (count 'em) of travelling time to my day. If
 I work from home I work too long. If work too long my code starts to
 suck. If my code starts to suck I get embarrassed and my reputation
 starts to slip. I want to work with copilots. I want to be able to
 *have* that tangential conversation that'll turn out to be useful in
 six months time. And table football's no fun if you're playing with
 yourself.
 
  Yes there are advantages to working in an office - i.e the team can
  be greater than the sum of its parts.
 
 This is *so* important.
 
  But working from elsewhere also allows idividuals to be productive -
  often alot more.
 
 How are you measuring productivity?
 

An assumption on real hours worked - i.e when I was in London I was ever
working more than about 6 hours a day (on a long day) due to lost time
... At home I regualarly hit 6 hours on a day that is 4 hours shorter. 
I have not measured this as their is no use benchmark qw(:gregs_time);

  Why not combine the two - i.e have a day a week where everyone meets to
  brainstorm / ask questions / do what needs to be done to take advantage
  of a group.
 
 Because groups don't work like that. All of a sudden I'm taking notes.
 And trying to 

Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-20 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

Robin Szemeti [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 Client has no concept about what software development is like and within
 a week or two cancels the entire thing 'some of those guys spent a whole
 week working and half the time couldnt even get it to run, by the end of
 the week all they'd done was write some strange "library" code and even
 that doesn;t seem to do anything'

Doesn't happen with XP. "Least necessary". You have the scheme of the
library in your head, agreed by the team, but you're coding visibly
from the outset.

-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Extreme Programming (was: Re: Consultancy company)

2001-01-20 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

"Dean S Wilson" [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 -Original Message-
 From: Aaron Trevena [EMAIL PROTECTED]
 
 
 I did a little pair programming at emap - I probably wasn't doing it
 right
 tho'. even so we did get thru the hard bits quicker and could split
 up to
 do the easy stuff. I think it made a difference but then I was mostly
 being a backseat coder so either we did okay or stuart was very
 tolerant
 indeed.
 
 
 How did you establish who would make good pairings? Was it done by
 trying to place two equals or was it done more on a mentoring level of
 a very experienced coder and a less experienced one? (I've not read
 that much on XP)

The latter. You mix skills. And the second isn't idle. He's coding up
the test cases.

 Is the Monday night meeting still on for those of us who can't make
 the lunch time one?

Oh, yes.

Leon, are you acting as scribe?

-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Extreme Programming (was: Re: Consultancy company)

2001-01-20 Thread Leon Brocard

Dave Hodgkinson sent the following bits through the ether:

 Leon, are you acting as scribe?

Yes. Don't expect a masterpiece though.

Leon
-- 
Leon Brocard.http://www.astray.com/
yapc::Europehttp://yapc.org/Europe/

... All new improved Brocard, now with Template Toolkit!



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Greg McCarroll

* Greg Cope ([EMAIL PROTECTED]) wrote:
 
 Thats were a few people have gone wrong lately then ;-)
 

yup

-- 
Greg McCarroll  http://www.mccarroll.uklinux.net



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

Greg Cope [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 Dave Hodgkinson wrote:
  
  "Paul Makepeace" [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
  
   The US has much more to worry about than the UK, like high water tables,
   vicious weather and earthquakes. The smart money goes on hosting in Texas
   (San Antonio) not California though -- relatively
   earthquake/tornado/storm/etc-free!
  
  You're talking rackspace.com, I take it? ;-)
 
 Are they not in New York ?

No. San Antonio if traceroutes are to be believed.

 
 Dellhost are in texas - which I destest due to its attitude to capital
 P.

You not been following the Confederacy conspiracy?

 What like americans ?
 
 (present american company excluded)

No, cable installation "engineers". All cable company phone
support/accounts.

-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

David Cantrell [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 And the UK doesn't have high water tables (in some places and not in others,
 just like anywhere else) or vicious weather (again, in some places not in
 others, just like anywhere else).  But it strikes me as being absurd that I
 hear EVERY YEAR of the power going out for large areas of major cities in
 .us, something which just doesn't happen in Europe.

It should be mandatory for all public servants to be adept at Sim
City.


-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Greg Cope

Dave Hodgkinson wrote:
 
 Greg Cope [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 
  Dave Hodgkinson wrote:
  
   "Paul Makepeace" [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
  
The US has much more to worry about than the UK, like high water tables,
vicious weather and earthquakes. The smart money goes on hosting in Texas
(San Antonio) not California though -- relatively
earthquake/tornado/storm/etc-free!
  
   You're talking rackspace.com, I take it? ;-)
 
  Are they not in New York ?
 
 No. San Antonio if traceroutes are to be believed.

I'll shut up then ;-0

 
 
  Dellhost are in texas - which I destest due to its attitude to capital
  P.
 
 You not been following the Confederacy conspiracy?
 

No - just dont like the gun ho lets fry anyone on deathrow - and now a a
great chestnut one of them got to be president ...

  What like americans ?
 
  (present american company excluded)
 
 No, cable installation "engineers". All cable company phone
 support/accounts.
 

Luckily I've not suffered from those.

Greg

 --
 Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
 Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
   Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
   -



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Michael Stevens

On Fri, Jan 19, 2001 at 09:42:11AM +, Greg McCarroll wrote:
  yes and no. If you need to do an allnighter and its unavoidable (due to a
  client suddenly changing ther mind) then theres no problem doing it ..
  just charge em bigtime!
 nope this is where your pimp/MD should of tied up the contract watertight,
 so if they change their mind the deadline changes

What do you do where this is not the case, other than think about finding
a new job?

Michael



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Piers Cawley

David Cantrell [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Thu, Jan 18, 2001 at 04:42:55PM +, Greg McCarroll wrote:
  * Leo Lapworth ([EMAIL PROTECTED]) wrote:
   People (no particular order):
   
= Pimp   =   =  Accountant  =
= BOFH   =   = Security Guru =
= Perl Gurus' =  = Perl Trainee Gurus  =
  
  i'd add an MD/CEO who would initially do a lot of the
  pimping, the accountant could initially also be outsourced.
  the BOFH and Security Guru could be rolled into one.
  i'd also hire non-Perl programmers so that you didn't
  just have one leg to the stool
 
 Seems reasonable. Also think about Oracle and Sybase wizards
 (combined with the BOFH and/or $language Guru roles initially) and
 an NT person. Actually, *all* the tech people should be sufficiently
 multi-skilled to be able to do two things reasonably well - that way
 it's easier to pimp them, they can command more dosh, and they (and
 the company) are protected if one of their skills goes badly out of
 fashion.

And one of the goals of gurus within the consultancy should be to help
train up other folks who want to pick up that skill. Preferably in an
environment where something real is being acheived.

   Money:
 Base salary and split proffit according to which category your in.
  
  founders split say 50% of the equity, 25% reserved for latecomers
  and 25% pencilled for VC types
 
 Just wait for the arguing about how that 50% gets split!

That 50% gets split equally among the founding partners.

   Open source / clients:
 Create projects for open source community (sell to clients
 with support). When not assigned to a specific money 
 making project or client create next project to OS and 
 make money from.
  
  agreed!
 
 Yup. Plan to make money from support contracts on this open source
 stuff, and also from being a 'preferred implementor' using it.

Indeed. Ooh, this sounds very tempting.

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Piers Cawley

David Cantrell [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 On Thu, Jan 18, 2001 at 04:51:18PM +, Greg Cope wrote:
 
  What about a bed / kip room and of course a play room - and I do not
  mean some 70's swingers thing - a P2, etc ... 
 
 Having something to crash on when pulling an all-nighter is, IMO, a bad
 idea as it encourages pulling all-nighters.  You just don't write good
 code at 2 in the morning, and end up spending just as much time untangling
 it as you did writing it in the first place.  And in any case, if you
 *need* to work all night, there's something wrong with the project
 management.  Oh yeah, we'd need to have project management skillz in the
 group too.  No need for a whole project mangler though to start with.
 
 As for toys - if they're not the *useful* sort of toy then they should be
 rewards*, as opposed to being there right from the start.  That way they
 become a motivational tool.  Although to be honest, I wouldn't be motivated
 by lots of the things numija companies think are motivating like PS2s.
 I'd be more for getting a bigger monitor on my workstation, or a punchbag
 for the office.  Or some clean jerrycans :-)

Big monitors on workstations are *not* rewards. They are essential
tools for the job. Anything smaller than 19" is rapidly approaching
too cramped for serious work. TFT monitors on workstations are
rewards...

 * - eg, when the first big fat cheque arrives from a happy client,
 get a PS 2. When we hit milestones *on time* in the next
 project, get another game for it.

Modulo the PS2 not necessarily being a motivator, that sounds like a
plan. 

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Piers Cawley

Dave Hodgkinson [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 Greg Cope [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 
  IMHO developers should be given the environment that is what makes them
  confotable, an IBM research center was on the telly the other day that
  had a big open plan style area, as well as individaul offices, as well
  as Lego.  The environment was totally focused to nuturing developers so
  that they create (hopefully good, bug-free(TM) code).
 
 Sounds like extreme programming to me...

I *so* want to try this. I'm getting fed up of being sole programmer
on projects.

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Michael Stevens

On Fri, Jan 19, 2001 at 10:32:16AM +, Michael Stevens wrote:
 On Fri, Jan 19, 2001 at 09:42:11AM +, Greg McCarroll wrote:
   yes and no. If you need to do an allnighter and its unavoidable (due to a
   client suddenly changing ther mind) then theres no problem doing it ..
   just charge em bigtime!
  nope this is where your pimp/MD should of tied up the contract watertight,
  so if they change their mind the deadline changes
 What do you do where this is not the case, other than think about finding
 a new job?

Although, thinking about it, I can also note that the "find a new job" approach
seems to work...

Michael



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat wormdiscovered

2001-01-19 Thread Jonathan Stowe

On 19 Jan 2001, Dave Hodgkinson wrote:

 David Cantrell [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 
  And the UK doesn't have high water tables (in some places and not in others,
  just like anywhere else) or vicious weather (again, in some places not in
  others, just like anywhere else).  But it strikes me as being absurd that I
  hear EVERY YEAR of the power going out for large areas of major cities in
  .us, something which just doesn't happen in Europe.
 
 It should be mandatory for all public servants to be adept at Sim
 City.

Thats where I went wrong when I was working in the public sector - I used
to play Duke Nukem all the time :)

/J\
-- 
Jonathan Stowe   |   
http://www.gellyfish.com |   I'm with Grep on this one 
http://www.tackleway.co.uk   |




Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Greg McCarroll

* Michael Stevens ([EMAIL PROTECTED]) wrote:
 On Fri, Jan 19, 2001 at 10:32:16AM +, Michael Stevens wrote:
  On Fri, Jan 19, 2001 at 09:42:11AM +, Greg McCarroll wrote:
yes and no. If you need to do an allnighter and its unavoidable (due to a
client suddenly changing ther mind) then theres no problem doing it ..
just charge em bigtime!
   nope this is where your pimp/MD should of tied up the contract watertight,
   so if they change their mind the deadline changes
  What do you do where this is not the case, other than think about finding
  a new job?
 
 Although, thinking about it, I can also note that the "find a new job" approach
 seems to work...

write a suggestions document of where the project management and
management functions are going wrong

if they ignore it leave

-- 
Greg McCarroll  http://www.mccarroll.uklinux.net



RE: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Andrew Bowman

 From: Greg McCarroll [SMTP:[EMAIL PROTECTED]]
 write a suggestions document of where the project management and
 management functions are going wrong

 if they ignore it leave

Do you know anywhere this has happened Greg? ;-)




Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hatworm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Neil Ford

Dave Hodgkinson [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

  Piers Cawley [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

   Big monitors on workstations are *not* rewards. They are essential
   tools for the job. Anything smaller than 19" is rapidly approaching
   too cramped for serious work. TFT monitors on workstations are
   rewards...

  19" on the first port of the G400, a TFT on the second?

Mmmm... so, when are we going to have a meeting about all this?

Well seeing as I will be amongst the great unwashed from next week, 
anytime soon would be good.

Neil.
-- 
Neil C. Ford
[EMAIL PROTECTED]
http://www.binky.ourshack.org



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Leon Brocard

Dave Hodgkinson sent the following bits through the ether:

 Sounds like a table at the New World one lunchtime...

OK. We might as well do this quickly, how about Monday 12.30 at the
New World restaurant in Chinatown. Everyone who is vaguely interested
in a Perl Consultancy of some sort is invited. People with business
sense needed too, though: offices, computers and bandwidth don't come
cheap.

Leon
-- 
Leon Brocard.http://www.astray.com/
yapc::Europehttp://yapc.org/Europe/

... All new improved Brocard, now with Template Toolkit!



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Leon Brocard

Dave Cross sent the following bits through the ether:

 I'd love to come along, but probably wouldn't have time to get there
 and back during lunch. Can we do it one evening?

OK, Penderel's Oak 6.30pm for those who can't make it to lunch. I'll
go to both and take notes.

Leon
-- 
Leon Brocard.http://www.astray.com/
yapc::Europehttp://yapc.org/Europe/

... All new improved Brocard, now with Template Toolkit!



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-19 Thread Greg Cope

Andy Wardley wrote:
 
 On Jan 18,  4:28pm, Leo Lapworth wrote:
  Ok, it's all a pipedream.. but what a nice one.
 
 It sounds like an excellent idea.  In fact, I've even got as far as
 writing a (fledgling) business plan for such a venture based around
 Template Toolkit-ish web development, support and consultancy.  It's
 something that Simon Matthews and I have been talking about for a couple
 of years, but never really quite got around to taking the plunge.  I
 was about to jump but work related improvments of the last few
 weeks have pushed it back onto the back burner.
 
 Now, what would it take to convince you that there are nicer places to
 work than central London?  Guildford, for example, is quite wonderful
 and only a train ride away from the smoke... :-)=

Agreed - why work in London - what about telecommuters ?

i.e I want to stay communtin to my desk - all 3 meters of it (the
commute - I live in a small flat)

 
 On the matter of funding, I have a friend who works for Goldman Sachs
 who offered to put me in touch with VC somewhere in the range of 2 - 10m.
 No favours, no guarantees, but at least a foot in the door and the offer
 of waving a business plan under the noses of the right kind of people.
 Of course, you might argue that GS != Right Kind of People  :-)
 
 But like others, I'm not convinced that VC is the way to go unless you
 really have to.  Having said that, if you want to start big and grow
 big quickly, I can't see a way to do that without significant moolah up
 front.  Maybe that means "really have to"?

Why need a VC's money for a consultancy - shurely most people involved
will have all the required kit (PC's / laptops) and all that may be
required is a small office.

A Consultantcy can raise cash quick via charging monthly like anyone
else - ok not everyone pays on time, but if a few do then thats cash in
the bank (especially as you pay everyone else at the end of the month.)

 
 One consideration worth playing on is that good Perl people are hard
 to come by.  As a scarce resource, we might be able to convince backers
 that a solid collection of guru and demi-guru level Perl people represents
 a mighty design/development/consultancy force which could quickly corner
 a large chunk of the market.
 
 I'd love to come to the meeting and hear the ideas, but I've done my
 trip to London for this month :-)

I've been 5 times this week - that's nearly my years quota !

Greg

 
 A
 
 Pipe dreamer.
 
 --
 Andy Wardley [EMAIL PROTECTED]   Signature regenerating.  Please remain seated.
  [EMAIL PROTECTED]   For a good time: http://www.kfs.org/~abw/



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Natalie Ford

At 14:55 19/01/01, Neil Ford wrote:
 Dave Hodgkinson [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 Mmmm... so, when are we going to have a meeting about all this?
Well seeing as I will be amongst the great unwashed from next week,
anytime soon would be good.

AOLMe too!/AOL




Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Natalie Ford

At 15:49 19/01/01, Dave Cross wrote:
I'd love to come along, but probably wouldn't have time to get there
and back during lunch. Can we do it one evening?

An evening would be better for me, too...

Natalie




Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Piers Cawley

Leon Brocard [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 Dave Hodgkinson sent the following bits through the ether:
 
  Sounds like a table at the New World one lunchtime...
 
 OK. We might as well do this quickly, how about Monday 12.30 at the
 New World restaurant in Chinatown. Everyone who is vaguely
 interested in a Perl Consultancy of some sort is invited. People
 with business sense needed too, though: offices, computers and
 bandwidth don't come cheap.

Put me down for that. Might bring Gill as well. 

-- 
Piers




Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat wormdiscovered

2001-01-19 Thread Jonathan Stowe

On 19 Jan 2001, Piers Cawley wrote:
 
 Put me down for that. Might bring Gill as well. 
 

It seems like every tom dick and harry's other half is called Gill around
here :)

/J\
-- 
Jonathan Stowe   |   
http://www.gellyfish.com |   I'm with Grep on this one 
http://www.tackleway.co.uk   |




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-19 Thread Greg Cope

Piers Cawley wrote:
 
 Greg Cope [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 
  Andy Wardley wrote:
  
   On Jan 18,  4:28pm, Leo Lapworth wrote:
Ok, it's all a pipedream.. but what a nice one.
  
   It sounds like an excellent idea.  In fact, I've even got as far as
   writing a (fledgling) business plan for such a venture based around
   Template Toolkit-ish web development, support and consultancy.  It's
   something that Simon Matthews and I have been talking about for a couple
   of years, but never really quite got around to taking the plunge.  I
   was about to jump but work related improvments of the last few
   weeks have pushed it back onto the back burner.
  
   Now, what would it take to convince you that there are nicer places to
   work than central London?  Guildford, for example, is quite wonderful
   and only a train ride away from the smoke... :-)=
 
  Agreed - why work in London - what about telecommuters ?
 
  i.e I want to stay communtin to my desk - all 3 meters of it (the
  commute - I live in a small flat)
 
 I'm *really* unsure about telecommuting. Seems to me that the way to
 really build a team (especially when doing serious development) is to
 have people in the same room; that way you get people who know the
 answers immediately on tap and able to overhear other discussions and
 contribute as appropriate. Whilst I love the journey to work in the
 home office I don't like the rest of the office conditions. Having
 people there is important.

I can understand the idea of building a team, but I think I am more
productive here, than in an office where I am nearly constantly
interupted.  Also not being able to ask a question of the person next
door, means I go look for the answer - and the person next door can get
on with it.

MySQL AB is a example of a company that is developeing a "product" in a
virtual sense - why not try and develope a virtual company ?

 
 And I like central London because (whatever else is wrong with it)
 it's relatively easy for everyone to get to by train no matter where
 they live. Trekking out to (for example) Guildford wouldn't be good
 for me.

But is treking into insert that good to working from home ?  ADSL is
cheap and working from home can be supprisingly productive.

Greg

who has so little work may have to commute to London every day ;-(

 
 --
 Piers



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-19 Thread Alex Page

On Fri, Jan 19, 2001 at 09:27:18AM +, Dave Hodgkinson wrote:

 It should be mandatory for all public servants to be adept at Sim
 City.

IIRC, Sim City is one of Ken Livingstone's favorites.

Alex



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-19 Thread Natalie Ford

At 17:42 19/01/01, you wrote:
Piers Cawley wrote:
  Greg Cope [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
   Agreed - why work in London - what about telecommuters ?
  
   i.e I want to stay communtin to my desk - all 3 meters of it (the
   commute - I live in a small flat)
 
  I'm *really* unsure about telecommuting. Seems to me that the way to
  really build a team (especially when doing serious development) is to
  have people in the same room; that way you get people who know the
  answers immediately on tap and able to overhear other discussions and
  contribute as appropriate. Whilst I love the journey to work in the
  home office I don't like the rest of the office conditions. Having
  people there is important.

I can understand the idea of building a team, but I think I am more
productive here, than in an office where I am nearly constantly
interupted.  Also not being able to ask a question of the person next
door, means I go look for the answer - and the person next door can get
on with it.

MySQL AB is a example of a company that is developeing a "product" in a
virtual sense - why not try and develope a virtual company ?

Sounds like a great idea.  Personally, as someone with M.S. (the MonSter), 
I need to be able to nap as and when I need to and work as and when I am 
able to.  Working from home allows me to do this...

  And I like central London because (whatever else is wrong with it)
  it's relatively easy for everyone to get to by train no matter where
  they live. Trekking out to (for example) Guildford wouldn't be good
  for me.

But is treking into insert that good to working from home ?  ADSL is
cheap and working from home can be supprisingly productive.

I can do 200% as much work at home because I can work when and as I feel 
able to and so work when I am my most productive.




Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-19 Thread Robin Szemeti

On Fri, 19 Jan 2001, you wrote:

  But is treking into insert that good to working from home ?  ADSL is
  cheap and working from home can be supprisingly productive.
 
 Where it's available. That would be 'not from my exchange in the
 forseeable future...'

ISDN is cool .. and from this quarters BT bil I only was connected for a
paltry 786 hours too ...

:)

-- 
Robin Szemeti

The box said "requires windows 95 or better"
So I installed Linux!



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-19 Thread Robin Szemeti

On Fri, 19 Jan 2001, you wrote:

 I can do 200% as much work at home because I can work when and as I feel 
 able to and so work when I am my most productive.

well having spent the last year telecommuting I can affirm that it does
let you sometimes work at phenomeonal rates

But I also can see the other side .. contact and 'just being able to ask'
is important too .. the telephone still works, and when I worked in a
building full of people I;d just as lilely phone em up or email em as
walk round to their office to see them. I'd say on balance that both have
merit. at white heat development pace its better to be all in one room ..
when its thrashed out and just needs plain doing, then wandering off home
and doing it when it feels best is just as powerful.

I'd see an ideal solution as being flexible and not pre constraining
yourselves to a fixed pattern. If you prefer one type of working much
over another then do it that way .. both have merit.

and I'm still dead keen to be involved in an XP project :))

whatever .. if you lot are going to be in Chinatown on Monday thats as
good a reason as any I can see for making a trip to the smoke ... see ya
there. 

-- 
Robin Szemeti

The box said "requires windows 95 or better"
So I installed Linux!



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-19 Thread David Cantrell

On Fri, Jan 19, 2001 at 05:04:54PM +, Piers Cawley wrote:

 I'm *really* unsure about telecommuting. Seems to me that the way to
 really build a team (especially when doing serious development) is to
 have people in the same room;

Plus there's too many distractions at home.  Even if you live on your own.
It's great to have the capability - for those evening brainwaves, or if
you're ill - but doing it every day just doesn't work, at least for me.

 And I like central London because (whatever else is wrong with it)
 it's relatively easy for everyone to get to by train no matter where
 they live. Trekking out to (for example) Guildford wouldn't be good
 for me.

Yeah.  What he said.

-- 
David Cantrell | [EMAIL PROTECTED] | http://www.cantrell.org.uk/david/

   Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-19 Thread Greg Cope

Piers Cawley wrote:
 
 Greg Cope [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 
  Piers Cawley wrote:
  
   Greg Cope [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
  
Andy Wardley wrote:

 On Jan 18,  4:28pm, Leo Lapworth wrote:
  Ok, it's all a pipedream.. but what a nice one.

 It sounds like an excellent idea.  In fact, I've even got as far as
 writing a (fledgling) business plan for such a venture based around
 Template Toolkit-ish web development, support and consultancy.  It's
 something that Simon Matthews and I have been talking about for a couple
 of years, but never really quite got around to taking the plunge.  I
 was about to jump but work related improvments of the last few
 weeks have pushed it back onto the back burner.

 Now, what would it take to convince you that there are nicer places to
 work than central London?  Guildford, for example, is quite wonderful
 and only a train ride away from the smoke... :-)=
   
Agreed - why work in London - what about telecommuters ?
   
i.e I want to stay communtin to my desk - all 3 meters of it (the
commute - I live in a small flat)
  
   I'm *really* unsure about telecommuting. Seems to me that the way to
   really build a team (especially when doing serious development) is to
   have people in the same room; that way you get people who know the
   answers immediately on tap and able to overhear other discussions and
   contribute as appropriate. Whilst I love the journey to work in the
   home office I don't like the rest of the office conditions. Having
   people there is important.
 
  I can understand the idea of building a team, but I think I am more
  productive here, than in an office where I am nearly constantly
  interupted. Also not being able to ask a question of the person next
  door, means I go look for the answer - and the person next door can
  get on with it.
 
 Hmm... Have you looked at the XP books?
 

XP ?

  MySQL AB is a example of a company that is developeing a "product" in a
  virtual sense - why not try and develope a virtual company ?
 
 Well, clients probably like offices. Admittedly not necessarily a
 *good* argument.
 

Ah well there I agree - a posh office creates an impression that alot of
big clients (read high revenue clients), find appealing. 

I've not argued against an office - just the idea that everyone has to
be in it all the time !

 
  
   And I like central London because (whatever else is wrong with it)
   it's relatively easy for everyone to get to by train no matter where
   they live. Trekking out to (for example) Guildford wouldn't be good
   for me.
 
  But is treking into insert that good to working from home ?  ADSL is
  cheap and working from home can be supprisingly productive.
 
 Where it's available. That would be 'not from my exchange in the
 forseeable future...'

Ah well, I want to move to Cornwall which will not get adsl for another
few years ;-(

Greg



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-19 Thread Greg Cope

David Cantrell wrote:
 
 On Fri, Jan 19, 2001 at 05:04:54PM +, Piers Cawley wrote:
 
  I'm *really* unsure about telecommuting. Seems to me that the way to
  really build a team (especially when doing serious development) is to
  have people in the same room;
 
 Plus there's too many distractions at home.  Even if you live on your own.
 It's great to have the capability - for those evening brainwaves, or if
 you're ill - but doing it every day just doesn't work, at least for me.
 

That should read there's too many distractions at home for me  (or
you as the case may be).

I am about 150% more productive at home - 25 % because I save the
journey, and the other 25% due to not having to go to meetings / going
for long lunches / the chat that turns into a tangenical discussion on
XZY / some Luser or PBH asking a stupid question that they could have
worked out themselves if I was not there / insert any other activity
that takes me away from the task in hand.

Sorry the above turned into a rant, I just get a bit pissed off with
closed minds that assume that having people in an office = productivity.

Yes there are advantages to working in an office - i.e the team can be
greater than the sum of its parts.

But working from elsewhere also allows idividuals to be productive -
often alot more.

Why not combine the two - i.e have a day a week where everyone meets to
brainstorm / ask questions / do what needs to be done to take advantage
of a group.

Rant over.

Greg

  And I like central London because (whatever else is wrong with it)
  it's relatively easy for everyone to get to by train no matter where
  they live. Trekking out to (for example) Guildford wouldn't be good
  for me.
 
 Yeah.  What he said.
 
 --
 David Cantrell | [EMAIL PROTECTED] | http://www.cantrell.org.uk/david/
 
Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced



Re: Consultancy company

2001-01-19 Thread Robin Szemeti

On Fri, 19 Jan 2001, you wrote:

 That should read there's too many distractions at home for me  (or
 you as the case may be).

im with greg on this one :)

although I can see that some project would need 5 day a week attendance
at some stages I am not convinced that that is the only way to do it all
the time.

The probelm I have at home is NOT being averly dostracted, but getting
carried away and forgetting to eat for too many hours :)

-- 
Robin Szemeti

The box said "requires windows 95 or better"
So I installed Linux!



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread Greg McCarroll

* Leo Lapworth ([EMAIL PROTECTED]) wrote:
 People (no particular order):
 
  ==   
  = Pimp   =   =  Accountant  =
  ==   
 
  ==   =
  = BOFH   =   = Security Guru =
  ==   =
 
  ===  ===
  = Perl Gurus' =  = Perl Trainee Gurus  =
  ===  ===

i'd add an MD/CEO who would initially do a lot of the
pimping, the accountant could initially also be outsourced.
the BOFH and Security Guru could be rolled into one.
i'd also hire non-Perl programmers so that you didn't
just have one leg to the stool

 Money:
   Base salary and split proffit according to which category your in.

founders split say 50% of the equity, 25% reserved for latecomers
and 25% pencilled for VC types

contractors could expect to take a 50 to 75% drop in salary

 Open source / clients:
   Create projects for open source community (sell to clients
   with support). When not assigned to a specific money 
   making project or client create next project to OS and 
   make money from.

agreed!

   Create client base with support contracts.

also create partner arrangements, i can think of at least 3
big companies i maybe could arrange partnerships with, that in some
cases would double the daily rate for consultancy

 Location
snip ;-)

 have to pay them back with interest and stuff.
equity surely? ;-)


-- 
Greg McCarroll  http://www.mccarroll.uklinux.net



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread Tony Bowden

On Thu, Jan 18, 2001 at 04:42:55PM +, Greg McCarroll wrote:
  have to pay them back with interest and stuff.
 equity surely? ;-)

Yes. But if you're successful the "interest" rate is huge ;)

But if you're not, well, they lose the money and not you.

FWIW It's much easier to negotiate with VCs if you're already
well established and actually have revenue and commitments and
stuff

Tony
-- 
-
 Tony Bowden | Belfast, NI | [EMAIL PROTECTED] | www.tmtm.com | www.blackstar.co.uk
 my Uncle Sol had a skunk farm but the skunks caught cold
-



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread Greg Cope

Leo Lapworth wrote:
 
 
 Location
 A big pub in central London.
 Top floors: development
 Ground floor Pub: with comedy stand and terminal points for laptops
 Basement: disco / conference room, big flat screens etc..

What about a bed / kip room and of course a play room - and I do not
mean some 70's swingers thing - a P2, etc ... 

Greg

a contractor in a "quite period"

 I've got a contact who says he can get hold of a million or
 so VC if this was an actually business plan, but then you
 have to pay them back with interest and stuff.
 
 Ok, it's all a pipedream.. but what a nice one.
 
 Leo



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread Greg McCarroll

* Tony Bowden ([EMAIL PROTECTED]) wrote:
 On Thu, Jan 18, 2001 at 04:42:55PM +, Greg McCarroll wrote:
   have to pay them back with interest and stuff.
  equity surely? ;-)
 
 Yes. But if you're successful the "interest" rate is huge ;)
 
 But if you're not, well, they lose the money and not you.
 
 FWIW It's much easier to negotiate with VCs if you're already
 well established and actually have revenue and commitments and
 stuff
 

well, this is all getting a bit close to the grain for me, if anyone
wants to discuss the possibilities of a non-perl specialised arena
consultancy feel free to to email me off list, however there may be
nasty NDA's involved


-- 
Greg McCarroll  http://www.mccarroll.uklinux.net



RE: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread James Royan

Neil So who's any good at business plans... (I have a book but)

I know a few things about setting up and running SMEs.  Happy to sit down
for an hour or so one evening with someone if it would be of assistance.

Unfortunately, I'm far too tied up with current venture to get much more
involved than this.

Regs,

J.
.

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 -Original Message-
From:   Neil Ford [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]] 
Sent:   18 January 2001 04:33
To: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Subject:RE:Consultancy company was  [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red
Hat worm discovered

[snip the first bit... all great]

Location
   A big pub in central London.
   Top floors: development
   Ground floor Pub: with comedy stand and terminal points for laptops

Purleese wireless is the only way to go. :-)

   Basement: disco / conference room, big flat screens etc..

I've got a contact who says he can get hold of a million or
so VC if this was an actually business plan, but then you
have to pay them back with interest and stuff.

Ok, it's all a pipedream.. but what a nice one.

So who's any good at business plans... (I have a book but)

Neil.
-- 
Neil C. Ford
[EMAIL PROTECTED]
http://www.binky.ourshack.org



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread Greg Cope

Greg McCarroll wrote:
 
 * Greg Cope ([EMAIL PROTECTED]) wrote:
  Leo Lapworth wrote:
  
  
   Location
   A big pub in central London.
   Top floors: development
   Ground floor Pub: with comedy stand and terminal points for laptops
   Basement: disco / conference room, big flat screens etc..
 
  What about a bed / kip room and of course a play room - and I do not
  mean some 70's swingers thing - a P2, etc ...
 
 
 nope, they are rewards, rewards are for sucess ;-)

Thats were a few people have gone wrong lately then ;-)

 
 --
 Greg McCarroll  http://www.mccarroll.uklinux.net



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread David Cantrell

On Thu, Jan 18, 2001 at 04:51:18PM +, Greg Cope wrote:

 What about a bed / kip room and of course a play room - and I do not
 mean some 70's swingers thing - a P2, etc ... 

Having something to crash on when pulling an all-nighter is, IMO, a bad
idea as it encourages pulling all-nighters.  You just don't write good
code at 2 in the morning, and end up spending just as much time untangling
it as you did writing it in the first place.  And in any case, if you
*need* to work all night, there's something wrong with the project
management.  Oh yeah, we'd need to have project management skillz in the
group too.  No need for a whole project mangler though to start with.

As for toys - if they're not the *useful* sort of toy then they should be
rewards*, as opposed to being there right from the start.  That way they
become a motivational tool.  Although to be honest, I wouldn't be motivated
by lots of the things numija companies think are motivating like PS2s.
I'd be more for getting a bigger monitor on my workstation, or a punchbag
for the office.  Or some clean jerrycans :-)

* - eg, when the first big fat cheque arrives from a happy client, get
a PS 2.  When we hit milestones *on time* in the next project, get another
game for it.

-- 
David Cantrell | [EMAIL PROTECTED] | http://www.cantrell.org.uk/david/

   Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread Dave Hodgkinson

"Paul Makepeace" [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

 The US has much more to worry about than the UK, like high water tables,
 vicious weather and earthquakes. The smart money goes on hosting in Texas
 (San Antonio) not California though -- relatively
 earthquake/tornado/storm/etc-free!

You're talking rackspace.com, I take it? ;-)

 
 On the upside, the US doesn't have BT "engineers" to deal with...

Trust me, they have much, much worse...

-- 
Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
  Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
  -



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread Greg Cope

David Cantrell wrote:
 
 On Thu, Jan 18, 2001 at 04:51:18PM +, Greg Cope wrote:
 
  What about a bed / kip room and of course a play room - and I do not
  mean some 70's swingers thing - a P2, etc ...
 
 Having something to crash on when pulling an all-nighter is, IMO, a bad
 idea as it encourages pulling all-nighters.  You just don't write good
 code at 2 in the morning, and end up spending just as much time untangling
 it as you did writing it in the first place.  And in any case, if you
 *need* to work all night, there's something wrong with the project
 management.  Oh yeah, we'd need to have project management skillz in the
 group too.  No need for a whole project mangler though to start with.

I was thinking of my mid afternoon kip, before going down stairs to the
pub!  I was only joking ;-)

Totaly agree with the all nighter bit above.

 
 As for toys - if they're not the *useful* sort of toy then they should be
 rewards*, as opposed to being there right from the start.  That way they
 become a motivational tool.  Although to be honest, I wouldn't be motivated
 by lots of the things numija companies think are motivating like PS2s.
 I'd be more for getting a bigger monitor on my workstation, or a punchbag
 for the office.  Or some clean jerrycans :-)
 
 * - eg, when the first big fat cheque arrives from a happy client, get
 a PS 2.  When we hit milestones *on time* in the next project, get another
 game for it.

Ah, now motivational thoery is totally different - a PS2 is not that
motivational for me, and I would imaging alot of people.  What _is_
probably motivational about a PS2 equiped office is the environment that
allows you to play with a PS2.

IMHO developers should be given the environment that is what makes them
confotable, an IBM research center was on the telly the other day that
had a big open plan style area, as well as individaul offices, as well
as Lego.  The environment was totally focused to nuturing developers so
that they create (hopefully good, bug-free(TM) code).

What people seem to be missing is that you need clients - once you've
got some doing the code is the easy bit.

Greg

Who could do the BOFH / security / perl bit  but does not want to
commute further than his home office

 
 --
 David Cantrell | [EMAIL PROTECTED] | http://www.cantrell.org.uk/david/
 
Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread Greg Cope

Dave Hodgkinson wrote:
 
 "Paul Makepeace" [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 
  The US has much more to worry about than the UK, like high water tables,
  vicious weather and earthquakes. The smart money goes on hosting in Texas
  (San Antonio) not California though -- relatively
  earthquake/tornado/storm/etc-free!
 
 You're talking rackspace.com, I take it? ;-)

Are they not in New York ?

Dellhost are in texas - which I destest due to its attitude to capital
P.

 
 
  On the upside, the US doesn't have BT "engineers" to deal with...
 
 Trust me, they have much, much worse...

What like americans ?

(present american company excluded)

Greg


 
 --
 Dave Hodgkinson, http://www.hodgkinson.org
 Editor-in-chief, The Highway Star   http://www.deep-purple.com
   Apache, mod_perl, MySQL, Sybase hired gun for, well, hire
   -



Re: Consultancy company was [Job] BOFH wanted was: Re: Red Hat worm discovered

2001-01-18 Thread Greg Cope

Robin Szemeti wrote:
 
 On Thu, 18 Jan 2001, you wrote:
 
  Having something to crash on when pulling an all-nighter is, IMO, a bad
  idea as it encourages pulling all-nighters.  You just don't write good
  code at 2 in the morning, and end up spending just as much time untangling
  it as you did writing it in the first place.
 
 yes and no. If you need to do an allnighter and its unavoidable (due to a
 client suddenly changing ther mind) then theres no problem doing it ..
 just charge em bigtime!
 
 Personally I have done (thinks) about 4 this year ... two of them due to
 sudden arrival of previously unannounced deadline .. (result: badly
 implemented crap code, stress, huge costs and a re write a week later)
 and 2 because I was just so tied up in it and it was going so well that I
 didn;t want to stop .. so I didn't ... the code from the latter is
 untouched to date and some of the better code I've written.
 
 There is nothing wrong per-se with working on into the night ... the lack
 of interruption and no pesky phones ringing can be the ideal time to
 engross yourself in the trickiest and most complex of problems ... but
 trying to hack something together whilst knackered is a recipie for
 disaster. My motto: if it feels good, do it.  Code when you feel at your
 most productive, if you don;t think your minds on the job bale out and
 play.  One of the reason I hated a 9 to 5 job was people asking me to do
 hard things before lunchtime and having to quit doing hard things because
 it was 5:00.
 
  And in any case, if you
  *need* to work all night, there's something wrong with the project
  management.
 
 no matter how well planned the project I have yet to find a client who
 hasn;t kept some small but deadly surprise as a secret to throw in just
 when they know its getting close. Some of these bombshells are smaller
 than others .. but they always seem to be there, waiting ... no problem
 .. just expect em an be prepared .. and charge em BigTime :)

Have you done much stuff under a DSDM style - ie. qrite a quick protype
and then iterate on that ? (massive internal rewrites are allowed under
this as it tries to stress the interface / functionality not the
internal implentation)

Greg

 
 I would be VERY interrested in working on a project managed by the XP
 method. It sounds to good to be true, (and I;ve done enough project
 managment to know that it probably is too good to be true) but I shure
 would like to give it a go.
 
 --
 Robin Szemeti
 
 The box said "requires windows 95 or better"
 So I installed Linux!