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SPaMCAST 549 features our essay Seven Issues Testers Experience Being Agile.  Recently I attended the QAI Quest Conference in Chicago, during the conference I got to talk with lots of people from across the development spectrum. From the conversations and workshops, I identified seven common threads that test and quality focused personal experience being or trying to be agile. In order to be agile, not just do agile, we need to tackle these seven issues

We also have the completion of Susan Parente’s three-installment discussion of distributed agile.  In this installment of Not a Scrumdamentalist, Susan discusses tools and whether they are the hurdle some people make them out to be.   (more…)

Direct Playback
Subscribe: Apple Podcast
Check out the podcast on Google Play Music
Listen on Spotify!

SPaMCAST 547 returns to our standard staggered approach with a discussion of work entry.  The majority of work entry issues are caused by eight problems. The eight problems often occur in clusters and are a reflection of organizational culture.  Knowing that there are eight problems is useful so that you can do something about them!

Also this week, Kim Pries, the software sensei is back and goes full curmudgeon.  Kim states ”After 40+ years of software work and lies, I get disgusted when I see yet another rehash of so-called tools that purport to do something valuable. The multi-colored risk analysis “tools” are essentially worthless. To date, I have never seen one of these catch or forestall idiocy on the part of a supplier or a customer. There’s no fixing stupid!”

Re-Read Saturday News

This week we are re-reading Chapter 4 of Thinking, Fast and Slow, The Associative Machine.  This chapter begins a deeper dive into the nuances of system 1 thinking.

If you do not have a favorite, dog-eared copy of Thinking, Fast and Slow, please buy a copy.  Using the links in this blog entry helps support the blog and its alter-ego, The Software Process and Measurement Cast. Buy a copy on Amazon,  It’s time to get reading!  

The installments:

Week 1: Logistics and Introductionhttp://bit.ly/2UL4D6h

Week 2: The Characters Of The Storyhttp://bit.ly/2PwItyX

Week 3: Attention and Efforthttp://bit.ly/2H45x5A

Week 4: The Lazy Controllerhttp://bit.ly/2LE3MQQ

Week 5: The Associative Machinehttp://bit.ly/2JQgp8I


SPaMCAST 548 will feature our interview with Heidi Helfand.  Heidi and I discussed teams and her book Dynamic Reteaming: The Art and Wisdom of Changing Teams.  It is time to challenge the conventional wisdom that in agile (or any walk of life) that you need to keep your teams “the same” in order to be successful.


Nothing Says Celebration Like Fireworks!

I enjoy looking back over the previous year to assess what we have accomplished on the blog and podcast. This was quite a year. Susan Parente and Wolfram Müller joined the podcast as columnists.  Anthony Mersino wrote a guest blog entry that was one of the highest traffic entries on the blog. We had year-over-year growth on both the blog and podcast. We also got the podcast on Spotify. At the same time, I changed jobs this year. While this was a positive from a work perspective, the change reduced the amount of time for blogging and podcasting.  During the year, we also had some technical issues causing the temporary loss of a few interviews. They have been recovered and we are catching up – I learned how to use a Linux distro to recover a drive. Overall we (it really is “we”) delivered 52 podcasts beginning with an interview with Kyle Siemens discussing The Case for Certifications and ending the year with essays and discussions covering Story Maps and Agile Risk Management. All 52 podcasts provided great content and there is not one of them I would not do again in a heartbeat.  We also delivered 212 blog entries.

The 10 most downloaded podcasts of the year were. (more…)


Nothing Says Celebration Like Fireworks!

When I first started blogging in November 2006 and then a little later podcasting (later January 2007), I did not specifically envision still being at it over 11 years later. During this period we went from a random entry to blogging daily for a few years to a cadence of four times a week.  I began the podcast publishing every other week and now we are publishing weekly. In June we (there are now a few people involved in the podcast and blog) we passed the milestones of 500 podcasts (not listening? Check out http://www.spamcast.net) and over 1700 blog entries. I still feel that I have a ton of things to explore, explain, and expand upon, but for today’s post, I’m celebrating. There were the milestones on the blog and podcast, my city is celebrating its bicentennial, in June my wife and I celebrated our 37th wedding anniversary and on July 4th we are celebrating my wife’s and my country’s birthday.  The month between June 7 and July 4 has been exciting (and busy)!For the first 6 months of the year:Top Five Podcasts:

  1. SPaMCAST 473 – Six Important Flow Metrics and Tameflow Chapter 20 Part 3
  2. SPaMCAST 482 – Natalie Warnert, Diversity and Women in Agile
  3. SPaMCAST 486 – Daniel S Vacanti, Actionable Agile Metrics
  4. SPaMCAST 471 – 20 Transformation Killers, QA and Requirements, Systems Thinking
  5. SPaMCAST 484 – Andriy Bas, Teal, Holacracy, Creativity, Productivity and Flat Organizations

Top Five Blog Entries Published in 2018 (so far)::

  1. Actionable Agile Metrics for Predictability by Daniel S. Vacanti, Re-read Saturday Week 11: Introduction to Cycle Time Scatterplots
  2. Coaching versus Mentoring
  3. Eight Categories of Muda
  4. Life Cycle of A User Story: Hierarchy
  5. The Definition of Done: Simplicity and Complexity Revisited

The lists we will share on December 31 will probably look very different. Like the Billboard Hot 100, there are quite a few entries that are charging up the list! I enjoy the competition between entities. Are there particular interviews or blog entries you would like to see? The entries from the Re-read Saturday series remain popular.  For those who participated in the recent poll, I would like to announce that the next book we will read is The Checklist Manifesto  (it was very close). The link to buy a copy and support the podcast is here.One last thing before I go off to watch fireworks. I am working on getting a new feature for the podcast off the ground.  I would like to interview people that would like to share one thing they do that they feel makes them successful. I am looking for a quick five-minute interview to share a short idea that someone involved in testing, developing or helping people that are delivering value think will help. Are you interested? Reach out to me at spamcastinfo@gmail.com or tcagley@tomcagley.com and let’s discuss doing a short interview.Have a marvelous day!  We will be back to our theme on Culture on Thursday!

We will take a break from our re-reading of Daniel S. Vacanti’s Actionable Agile Metrics for Predictability: An Introduction (buy a copy today) this week.  I am spending the weekend learning and getting new ideas to improve the Software Process and Measurement Cast at PodCamp.  While I am sitting in lecture halls at Ryerson University in Toronto this weekend please take the time to weigh in on the poll to choose the next book in the Re-read Saturday Series.  You can vote for two books.  I will cut off the poll next Friday.


With 2018 on the horizon I want to spend a few moments to showcase the most popular podcasts and blog entries published in 2017.

For those of you who read the blog and don’t listen to the podcast, a quick reminder — the Software Process and Measurement Podcast explores the varied world of software process improvement and measurement, providing solutions and advice on how to improve value delivery effectiveness. SPaMCAST combines essays, commentaries, interviews, question and answer sessions, and your feedback to serve up ideas, options, opinions, and advice that can be applied in the real world. In a nutshell, the cast provides advice for and from practitioners, methodologists, pundits, and consultants!

The podcast is published every Sunday, 52 times a year (except when we have equipment failure). We publish two types of podcasts. The first type features an interview, and the second is more of a magazine and includes an essay from the blog and two or three columns from a great group of contributors. The current cast of incredible minds include:

Are you interested in participating? Pitch me! The more voices the better! (more…)


With 2017 just beginning I want to spend a few moments to showcase the most popular podcasts and blog entries published in 2016. (more…)

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