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Four steps for reducing project risk

Risks in a project are inevitable. However, carefully collecting, evaluating, prioritizing, and controlling risks can increase the chances of success for your next project.

Whether it’s small or large, complex or simple, every project has risk. It’s our job as managers to do our best to not only minimize the risk in our projects but to minimize it as soon as we can. In this article, you’ll learn a simple four-step approach for doing just that.

Inventory

The first step to managing the risk of a project is to inventory the situation. That is, identify all of the risks that you think are possible in the project. The inventory should include all internal factors for the project such as resource changes, assumption failures, and sponsor availability. It should also include all external factors such as a change in company direction or a change of technology direction. Most of all, however, it should include the things that are new in the project. If the project is working with a new technology, is using a new development methodology, or even if there are new, relatively unknown team members, these need to be listed as potential risks to the project.

http://techrepublic.com.com/article/four-steps-for-reducing-project-risk

No Wake Before 10:00 AM

Every Parent’s Dream…

I saw a sign that every parent has dreamed of…

No Wake Before 10:00 AM

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

Maybe they weren’t talking about that kind of wake.

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Submission — Anti-Virus Software

I broke down today and bought Anti-Virus software for the primary computer that I use.  I’ve had anti-virus software on customer computers, my son’s computer, and my wife’s computer.  The reason I didn’t have it on the computer that I work on is because I think it’s an unnecessary evil.  If you’re suspicious and careful you should be able to avoid infection by a virus.  OK, so I hedged my bets and occaisionally ran Trend Micro’s House Call solution. Still, I didn’t feel like it was necessary software — and supporting an industry which has caused so many hours of problems with software that blocks things in unexpected ways has never been high on my list.

However, I realize that in today’s environment, the only way for corporations to protect themselves is to ensure that the laptops connecting to their network have current anti-virus software and that the definitions are up to date.  The goal being, of course, to provide some measure of assurance that the computer isn’t infected.

So, I’ve joined the masses in using Anti-Virus software.  Even if I don’t like the whole concept.

-rlb

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Of Chickens and Eggs

While working with a client yesterday we were discussing the idea of having email (or parts of your email) as a window in SharePoint.  They were discussing how the limited space made things difficult while simultaneously discussing how it was important to have a one stop experience for the portal.  Then the comment came up that one member of the group always started their day with email.

A light bulb went off.  You can set an HTML (web) page as the default view for a folder in outlook.  Simply right click the folder, select properties, select the Home Page tab, enter your URL, Click the ‘Show home page by default for this folder’ checkbox and click OK.  Now whenever you click on the folder the web page appears.

Now they can decide whether they want Outlook housing SharePoint or SharePoint housing email via Outlook Web Access.  While on that note.  Send me an email if you’ld like to beta some utilities that are like the ‘My Inbox’, ‘My Calendar’, and ‘My Tasks’ web parts in SPS.  I have written a set which don’t require the user name to be set in properties so they can be deployed on a shared view.  I’d like to get some testing done on them.

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Anatomy of a Software Development Role: Deployment

The deployment role is a role that is often overlooked much to the pain of the users. The actions of this role are the final step before being able to hand over the code to the users for their first real road test of the solution. It is the deployment person who can have the largest impact on the initial perception of the software for the people who are first trying it out. (If you’ve not been following the series, you should read Cracking the Code: Breaking Down the Software Development Roles.)

Success here can hide quirks in the solution but failures here can give the wrong impression about the software.

What’s the Deployment role?

A software solution of any complexity will have dependencies that must be present before the solution can be used. Many of these dependencies go unstated. For instance, a Java program needs a certain level of the Java runtime environment installed to be able to run. .NET based applications require a specific version of the .NET framework and common language runtime to run. In the case of database applications specific versions of the software drivers to connect to the software to the database are required. Click here to see how the the Deployment role fits within the full organizational chart.

In addition to these software dependencies, there may also be hardware dependencies. This could include a minimum amount of member, a required amount of hard disk space, access to multiple machines (such as a database server versus an application server), access to the Internet, and more.

http://www.developer.com/java/ent/article.php/3519186

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A single Goliath or best of breed

No single off-the-shelf system will exactly meet all of your organizational needs. The trick is finding the set of solutions that meet your organization’s needs and that work well with each system within that set of solutions.

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Glaciers 101

Since coming to Alaska I’ve learned a lot about Glaciers.  Yesterday’s excursion was the Phillips 26 Glacier Cruise.  It was very good, although I wish I would have seen some whales.

Here’s what I did see!

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Sometimes you just stick out…

If you’ve been wondering what I’ve been up to, I’ve been in Alaska doing some work during the day and playing during the evenings.

It’s been fun but it’s meant that some of my technical issues (like the one around enumeration class casting, are sitting on a back burner.)

bee

Ramblings: Things I hate about debugging

So one of the things that I truly despise about debugging is working for a few hours trying to make something work only to find out later that it isn’t that thing that’s broken at all… Case in point.  I was getting a Access denied type message while trying to write something to the registry.  I thought it was code access security — because that’s normally what it is.  It turned out to be that I forgot to ask for write access when I opened up the key… ARG!

Now I’m off chasing some enumerator problem from a base class…

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Sell the Strategy Before Selling the Tactics

You need to sell the strategy of technological innovations both to your group and to the organization as a whole. From there, each tactical battle is easier. The organization will already know the expected result and can visualize the success of each tactic resulting in the goal or goals they want.

“Those who fail to plan, plan to fail” was the old cliché that my English teachers inflicted upon me during my junior high school years. Unfortunately, that only conveys part of the message. When discussing how to lead your group forward in any technological innovation, it’s not enough to merely have a plan; you have to sell the plan. You have to get your group to buy into the plan and be willing to make sacrifices in order to reach the plan’s vision.

Failing to sell the plan will often mean having to sell every action you take. Without a good understanding of the plan, most people will assume you don’t have one and will approach each item as a separate “stab-in-the-dark” attempt to improve things.

You need to sell the strategy in what you’re doing both to your group and to the organization as a whole. From there, each tactical battle is easier. The organization will already know the expected result and can visualize the success of each tactic resulting in the goal or goals they want.