About a year ago I threw my hat into the ring to serve as an At Large Board member at the Association. Immediately after the election ended last year, I had several people ask me to run again. There were inquiries, after Holly made the call for 2014 nominations, if I would be running. My desire to serve has not diminished in the least. If anything, the last year has increased my respect and connection to the community as a whole.
This past year has brought a lot of change to my professional life. I worked as an independent Project and Process Management consultant and was incredibly grateful to all my clients who really made that eight months meaningful and kept my family well taken care of. I'm also pleased to have joined Aten Design Group as the Director of Client Services. This shift in my career has truly allowed me to flex my process and project management muscles.
Why does this matter? It speaks to my motives for running for the Association Board.
Drupalcamp Colorado has wrapped up for another year. This year's event was a little more intimate than recent Colorado and took place in an awesome location in Boulder Colorado. While I don't think in previous years (due to the number of attendees) it would have worked - for this year, the space was awesome. Power at every seat, great space for the keynote, and nice restaurants within walking distance. Aten colleagues', "No Taco Bell is NOT my idea of a good Mexican Restaurant" ;) .
In just a few days Drupalcamp Colorado will commence. Folks will start descending on the CU Boulder Campus on Friday. Will you be one of them? The whole weekend is a mere $10 - less than two fancy coffees - for access to about 30 amazing sessions over two days and two parties sponsored by great companies.
Thirteen years ago I had just wrapped up surgery, a groshon catheter being implanted, foley catheterization, bleomycin, etoposide, platinol, zofran, and compazine. I had gone through an immensely stressful time that transformed the way I look at the world.
Even so, I was lucky. Embroynal Carcinoma is very treatable in its early stages. In fact, it is reckoned to be one of the more treatable cancers and can be cured if it is caught early enough. That said, untreated it is deadly and the treatment is pretty miserable. Really there are two routes you can take after having the offending fellow removed. First, you can have an RPLND - in which you are opened from your neck to your pubic bone and all your lymph nodes are dissected from your body. This lays folks up for months. The second route is chemotherapy which makes you feel very sick.
I opted for the chemotherapy.
Every year I look back at the previous 12 months to reflect. Some years I choose to write about the year through the lens of a survivor. Some years I just quietly reflect on my own. I never cease to be grateful, humbled, and amazed at how awesome my life has been since finding that traitorous lump. I have an amazing wife. I have a daughter who stuns me with her intelligence and fortitude. I've had really interesting work and joined the supportive and nurturing Drupal community. I've travelled most of the United States and to many places in Canada, Europe, and even time in Australia.
It is that time of year. Everything is getting a little greener. The days are warming up. Drupalcamp Colorado is almost upon us! Last year the local community in Colorado decided to skip hosting what is one of the best Drupalcamps around. Why? Because we put on Drupalcon and there was a fair bit of fatigue following the event. Well, not so this year. The camp site is up and running! It is ready for registrations, session proposals, and payments!
Keynotes will be Jeff Eaton (Senior Drupal Architect at Lullabot) and Felicia Pride (Media Strategist, Content Producer, and Educator from Pride Collaborative).
Registration is a mere $10 - and is well worth it!
A small portion of my world was shaken by The Drupal Association's announcement about Neil and Marta today. Neil had some rocky times with the community, but Drupalcon Denver really changed all of that. As he came to understand the community and how passionate we all are about what we do and how tight a community we all are he became one of us. I would hazard to say there are a significant number of us that don't just think of him as the con's organizer but also a close friend. I got to know Neil well during Drupalcon Denver and can honestly say that his grounded down-to-earth nature, his skills as an organizer, and his willingness to listen and adapt to how we do things was a real boon to the community. You will be missed.
I don't know Marta as well as Neil, but I've very much enjoyed my visits with her.
If you include the work that I have done in the theatre as a stage manager - I've been engaged in project management since 1989. 24 years is a long time to think about and practice a craft. I wrote a bit about how technical theatre seems to impact software project management. I've been writing about technology and project management since 2004/05 and I've been managing the builds of complex database driven systems since 1999. All of this has led to my using many different project management styles and tool sets.
I've submitted a session in Portland on just this subject.
Learn from my 18 years of Project Management Experience with Technology. I've done it all - cowboy, waterfall, extreme, and agile scrum.
- Waterfall doesn't always work
- Agile has a place, but isn't the holy grail
- Cowboy can kill the relationships you have with your stakeholders
- How "Fixed Scope" is a lie
- That a combination of approaches is the answer
Project management requires a blend of techniques and tools to effectively shepherd projects from ideation to release. We'll explore and discuss different tools and methodologies that can help make your project successful.
I contract with a few different companies at a time. I have email addresses with several of them. Each have their own clients who want to share assets - things like comps, artwork, wireframes and so forth. I've played with a variety of ways of sharing these assets. You can attach them to tickets in your ticketing system, but you may not want your client to be in the ticketing system. I've also had clients that were savvy enough to use a repository like GIT or SVN - but that is fairly rare. In comes Dropbox. Dropbox synchronizes and version controls on drag and drop. Almost any client can wrap their heads around that concept.
This works fabulously for one dropbox. However, if you are in a situation where you need (want) multiple boxes, things get a little squirrelly. Dropbox does not support this. Luckily, if you are a mac user, a little script in your terminal window will fix this lickety split, allowing you to have as many drop-boxes as email addresses you work with.
We live in a house built in the 50's. It is sturdily built as things were back then. We have made some improvements. It has a new roof. The gutters are the seamless kind with a leaf barrier. We've added central air. The outside windows and doors were replace and the living room, which had a picture window, has a giant bay window that lets in lots of bright light. Our open back patio was screened in to create a wonderful summer-time space to enjoy the warm weather but avoid the bugs. Our family room had nasty carpet, so we put in a lovely light laminate. We got a high efficiency stove to put in the fireplace to help heat during the winter.
What we had never done was work on the kitchen. The original kitchen from the 50's. Well, the floor had been replaced, kind of. You can see *what* it had been replaced with along with our ferrets at the time enjoying a meal with our puppy at the time. The limit to the changes we made to the kitchen had been a little paint and a new vinyl floor. That was a decade ago - pretty much the lifetime of such a floor.
When I was at BADCamp a few weeks ago, Addison Berry asked if I'd be willing to participate in a podcast on project management. I am a process geek having spent years working with 100s of developers, product managers, executives, clients, and project managers across the arts, government agencies, non-profits, media companies, schools, sports, and retailers. This has made for so many different configurations of project management styles, methodologies, and personalities. I've learned from all of them.