DevOps is a much used term, but it seems like everyone you talk to has a different definition of it. Here’s my own interpretation: DevOps is a series of processes designed to reduce the time between development and deployment. By reducing this lead time, development teams can gather feedback more quickly and iterate their solution, delivering value based on real data and customer feedback. Viewed through this lens, DevOps is a key component in realizing the true value of Agile Development. As The Agile Manifesto states: “Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer’s competitive advantage.” So, reducing the time spent getting features out into the wild is key. In practice, that means less time spent in testing and deployment. To do that, the practice of DevOps has…
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A common idiom in our industry is, “You never can predict how the user will use your product once they get it in their hands.” If you’ve ever watched a stakeholder use a website or web application for the first time, you may know this firsthand. I can’t count the number of times I’ve seen a user seemingly forget how to use websites on a mobile device, or try to use it in a way that makes you think, “But no one would actually do that in real life!” The thing is, you never really do know what a user may do in the moment. They might be in a frantic state of mind, trying to accomplish something too quickly, and don’t tap or type the way a calm, focused user might. This fits right into the all-too-common scenario of designing and developing for the best case scenario, and not…
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Urbanspoon It happens to all of us: you’re hungry, but can’t really decide what to eat. Or you want to try something new, but don’t want to pay for a bad meal. Luckily, your phone can help. Urbanspoon is a restaurant app designed to help you decide where to eat. Presented as a slot machine widget, Urbanspoon reads your location, lets you pick the type of food you’re looking for, and then tells you to shake your iPhone for a restaurant pick. Not happy with the results? Shake it again. Results can be filtered by neighborhood, cuisine, price, distance, popularity, no chains and the meal you’re looking for. Urbanspoon also provides reviews from bloggers, newspapers and other users.