I recently presented at the Rally Agile Executive Talk Radio program on how best to approach the Daily Scrum (or Daily Standup for those non-Scrum folks). It was a quick talk – about ten minutes – and I thought it would be interesting to share the presentation.
Enjoy and let me know what you think!
There doesn’t seem to be many Twitter Lists of the top iOS developers out there – you would think Googling would bring up dozens of results, but it doesn’t! So here is a great start to a Twitter List of the top iOS mobile developers to follow. Click here to follow the list.
On Monday April 2, 2012 the Supreme Court of the United States of America ruled in the case of Florence v. Board of Chosen Freeholders that the police can strip search anyone entering jail (not just prison, but also jail) after being arrested for any offense (murder to drug trafficking to speeding to walking your dog without a leash). Often contraband, such as weapons and drugs, enter the prison system through newly introduced inmates, thus the Justices reasoned that the safety of the inmates and guards outweighs the privacy and rights of the individual. Is this just?
Consider what this means, as observed by Sherry Colb on CNN Opinion (click here for the article):
In one facility, this means “a complete disrobing, followed by an examination of the nude inmate … by the supervising officer, which is then followed by a supervised shower with a delousing agent.” In the other facility, the booking process “required groups of 30 to 40 arrestees to enter a large shower room, simultaneously remove all of their clothing, place it in boxes and then shower.”
To personally answer the question of justice, self-reflect on do you consider it just (not necessarily like or be happy with, but know in your heart it is just) if a loved one, friend, acquaintance, or yourself were stripped searched for not paying a parking ticket. It is the same exercise for for torture, i.e. water boarding, where being accused of a crime justifies the means to extract the sought after information. Using this simple litmus test, some will find the court’s decision just and others will not.
I personally, and profoundly, believe that the decision of the Supreme Court is not just. The court determined the best way to protect the inmates and guards is by removing the rights and dignitary of the accused. They focused on a laudable end goal and worked backwards to justify the means – a slippery slope of reasoning that can make any injustice justifiable.
So what can we do given the highest court in the land has made their decision? Luckily, times and attitudes change – hopefully for the better. Slavery and discrimination were justified by the courts and later overturned, and so might this decision. Citizens have several avenues to address this injustice: writing your representative, speaking our against the injustice both verbally and using the internet, and if the injustice happens to you, fight back through the courts by suing the police and state. You most likely will lose, but all we need is one judge to recognize the injustice and open back up the debate.
Last Thursday I received my new 3rd generation Apple TV. First off, I can tell you that I’ve spent too many hours researching, debating, and analyzing whether or not I should buy the $99 device. Seriously, my wife and I going to a Saturday night dinner at a NYC restaurant easily tops $99, so I don’t know why I spent hours deciding. But I digress. The new Apple TV is just fun! The device is crazy small and the interface is clean and easy to use. Apple and Netflix movies in HD (1080p) play flawlessly – 1080p streaming was just introduced in the updated version. I also have access to all of my music via iTunes Music Match and any movies I purchased in iTunes. I had a lot of fun just exploring the features and watching some TV series I purchased in iTunes but never completed because I hate watching shows on my computer.
Now, some might say, “well, I already have Netflix from my blu-ray player or PS3/XBox.” True, but I found using the Apple TV is so much easier than those systems. Also, as of right now Netflix only stream 1080p with the Apple TV. One thing I don’t like is the remote that comes with the Apple TV – the skinny silver one. Luckily, I don’t use the remote often because on my iPhone I have the Remote app. The Remote app is great and makes controlling the Apple TV easy.
My recommendation: buy the Apple TV….for $99 you won’t be disappointed. And if you really want to go crazy, jailbreak the Apple TV and install XBMC.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – the common reasoning for not upgrading software, hardware, cars, toaster ovens, etc. Basically, new doesn’t always equal better. I can’t agree more, but when my mother-in-law gave me the same reasoning for not updating her iPhone apps, it occurred to me…she actually might be breaking her beloved apps by not updating them.
I spend my days developing iPhone and iPad apps, so I know the challenge to test older versions against the growing number of devices and iOS versions. If my app is at version 5 (having gone through version 1-4), I can honestly say I don’t really test versions 1-2 and maybe not even version 3 for backwards compatibility. Why would an old version break just because a new version is released? Well, it has to do with the back-end systems that are supporting the app. For example, all your friend’s Facebook wall posts appearing in your Facebook iPhone app come from the Facebook servers. This data is formated in a certain way and overtime as new features are added and others removed, the format of the data needs to change. Eventually, the older app (unless a lot of time and energy is spent) won’t understand the new data format and will stop functioning. So, while my mother-in-law thinks by not updating she is removing the potential for her apps breaking and saving herself hassle, she in fact is increasing and, for certain apps, inevitability breaking them. The moral of the story: Update your apps if you want them to keep working.
I just discovered on YouTube a great series from the RSA that animates various TED like talks. Instead of just listening to a talk by a writer, intellectual, or scientist, you watch this fantastic artist illustrate the topics as they are being discussed. It truly brings a new dimension to the concepts presented.
And here is my favorite one by Dan Pink on what motivates us:
You can check out all the RSA Animations here.
Hopefully RSA will make one on Malcolm Gladwell.
After waiting by the sidelines since the launch of Apple’s iTunes Music Match, I finally signed up today. In fact, my music library is currently being scanned (and boy is it taking a long time). Why did I wait so long? Simple paranoia. Apple is scanning you music library to do a match and technically can track the uniqueness of a file. In other words, every music file ripped from a CD leaves a unique signature on generated mp3. If the same signature is on 10,000+ people’s mp3 of Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance, there is a very high likely hood that this is a “shared” mp3 file. Now the last time I used a file sharing service was during the original Napster era and I’ve replaced almost all of those downloaded files with “non-shared” copies. But who knows if one of my thousands of files is that copy of No Doubt’s Spiderwebs I downloaded 15 years ago. If the records industry forces Apple via a court order to divulge their Music Match records, well, a lot of legal notices will be going out and I certainly don’t want one.
However, my fears were finally reduced after reading this article that states Apple doesn’t keep track of the signature and just does an acoustic match. So, I’ve taken the plunge and won’t look back (cause at this point I don’t have a choice).