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[MOD] "Virtual" Collocation

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  • Ron Jeffries
    The Collocation thread is shedding more heat and less light than it is worth, in my opinion. I am prepared, under this heading, to have my opinion reset by
    Message 1 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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      The Collocation thread is shedding more heat and less light than it
      is worth, in my opinion. I am prepared, under this heading, to have
      my opinion reset by wiser heads than mine.

      At this time the only action I'm taking is this note. However, in my
      current opinion that thread needs one or more of these things:

      1. To go away.

      2. To have real, specific examples of how aspects of the technology
      would actually be implemented.

      3. To have real, specific examples of teams working using the
      technology, ideally with comparisons to teams not doing so, both
      physically collocated and remote without the technology.

      What the thread does not need includes:

      1. More unsubstantiated claims about what this non-existent
      technology will do when it is implemented.

      2. More name-calling.

      3. More repetition of the two main arguments, which I will sum up
      here:

      "Has not been done, I believe it will work."
      "Has not been done, I don't believe it will work."

      For now, I'm not taking any action beyond this note. I don't want to
      take action beyond this note. I'm willing to be talked out of taking
      action. However, this thread needs to get more civil, more concrete,
      and more interesting.

      Thanks,

      Ron Jeffries
      www.XProgramming.com
      www.xprogramming.com/blog
      Do as you will, try to do it well. That's what I do.
    • Victor
      I agree with Ron. It s time to cut it off. I would say one of the reasons it has taken so long is because of the tendency to take things personally. Maybe if
      Message 2 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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        I agree with Ron. It's time to cut it off.
        I would say one of the reasons it has taken so long is because of the
        tendency to take things personally. Maybe if more energy would be dedicated
        to keep the information professionally objective and less into "I am right",
        or "This is the reason I am wrong, sorry", the bandwidth could have been
        used more efficiently.

        Victor

        =================================

        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "Ron Jeffries" <ronjeffries@...>
        To: "extremeprogramming" <extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Monday, January 05, 2009 5:30 AM
        Subject: [XP] [MOD] "Virtual" Collocation


        > The Collocation thread is shedding more heat and less light than it
        > is worth, in my opinion. I am prepared, under this heading, to have
        > my opinion reset by wiser heads than mine.
        >
        > At this time the only action I'm taking is this note. However, in my
        > current opinion that thread needs one or more of these things:
        >
        > 1. To go away.
        >
        > 2. To have real, specific examples of how aspects of the technology
        > would actually be implemented.
        >
        > 3. To have real, specific examples of teams working using the
        > technology, ideally with comparisons to teams not doing so, both
        > physically collocated and remote without the technology.
        >
        > What the thread does not need includes:
        >
        > 1. More unsubstantiated claims about what this non-existent
        > technology will do when it is implemented.
        >
        > 2. More name-calling.
        >
        > 3. More repetition of the two main arguments, which I will sum up
        > here:
        >
        > "Has not been done, I believe it will work."
        > "Has not been done, I don't believe it will work."
        >
        > For now, I'm not taking any action beyond this note. I don't want to
        > take action beyond this note. I'm willing to be talked out of taking
        > action. However, this thread needs to get more civil, more concrete,
        > and more interesting.
        >
        > Thanks,
        >
        > Ron Jeffries
        > www.XProgramming.com
        > www.xprogramming.com/blog
        > Do as you will, try to do it well. That's what I do.
        >
        >
        > ------------------------------------
        >
        > To Post a message, send it to: extremeprogramming@...
        >
        > To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
        > extremeprogramming-unsubscribe@...
        >
        > ad-free courtesy of objectmentor.comYahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
      • Owen Thomas
        Everyone. I don t know what MOD means, but I guess it is a judgement call of some type. Whatever anyone else might think of my motives here, I was having a
        Message 3 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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          Everyone.

          I don't know what MOD means, but I guess it is a judgement call of some
          type.

          Whatever anyone else might think of my motives here, I was having a good
          time exploring this subject. I think it is relevant to this industry,
          and believe that this mode of work will become more popular as one
          generation leaves, and the next fills, positions where they can do
          something about making this change.

          As an individual, I keep believing an industry like the one I had chosen
          was capable of change. It is after all, an industry that heralded that
          computers would produce beneficial changes in lifestyle. Chasing this
          belief, I educated myself and have done all that I was told was
          necessary to realise a benefit.

          Now, I think this benefit was an illusion of systematic cajoling.

          This was meant to be an exploratory debate. It did descend into name
          calling and blunt accusations. The first accusation may have appeared to
          be by myself to Ron Jeffries where I said "Is it good being glum". We
          were acquainted from another group, and I feel a bit of friction between
          us extended in to this one when the quip was uttered.

          Another time I became abrasive was when the suggestion was made that
          body odour played a part in team cohesion. I was not making a comment
          about the person who made it when I said that entertaining this
          suggestion was voodoo. I had heard of statements that hinted at this
          suggestion paraded as excuses earlier in my working life. Hearing it
          here unsprung some frustration that had accumulated over a long time.

          The next time I believe I was prompted into a quick cutting response was
          when someone made a specious accusation about me being a "troll". I
          didn't know what he meant when I saw it, so quickly responded in the way
          I did. I do not apologise to the individual to the way I responded; I
          apologised to the group. I still think the remark to be completely
          presumptuous and lacked any real interest in the debate except to have a
          quick cheap jab at the person who was trying to make an intelligent
          conversation about a subject that needs it.

          It appears that there are elements in this group that cannot hold an
          intelligent conversation (something which membership of this group
          requires) on the subject of remote teamwork. That is rather saddening.
          It would have been better had these elements never spoke. Although I am
          sure in time remote teamwork will become an accepted mode of work for
          the software development industry, maybe it will not change quickly
          enough for me to receive some benefit.

          Owen.
        • Ron Jeffries
          ... Another insult, this time to all of us. Moderation for you. Ron Jeffries www.XProgramming.com www.xprogramming.com/blog We know less about the project
          Message 4 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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            Hello, Owen. On Monday, January 5, 2009, at 6:22:46 AM, you wrote:

            > It appears that there are elements in this group that cannot hold an
            > intelligent conversation (something which membership of this group
            > requires) on the subject of remote teamwork. That is rather saddening.
            > It would have been better had these elements never spoke. Although I am
            > sure in time remote teamwork will become an accepted mode of work for
            > the software development industry, maybe it will not change quickly
            > enough for me to receive some benefit.

            Another insult, this time to all of us. Moderation for you.

            Ron Jeffries
            www.XProgramming.com
            www.xprogramming.com/blog
            We know less about the project today than at any time in the future.
            -- Chet Hendrickson
            You mean today is the dumbest day of the rest of my life?
            -- Ron Jeffries
          • Owen Thomas
            I don t get it.
            Message 5 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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              I don't get it.
            • Ron Jeffries
              ... Mr Thomas has left the group of his own volition. Ron Jeffries www.XProgramming.com www.xprogramming.com/blog How do I know what I think until I hear what
              Message 6 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                Hello, Owen. On Monday, January 5, 2009, at 6:53:12 AM, you wrote:

                > I don't get it.

                Mr Thomas has left the group of his own volition.

                Ron Jeffries
                www.XProgramming.com
                www.xprogramming.com/blog
                How do I know what I think until I hear what I say? -- E M Forster
              • Ron Jeffries
                ... He left on his own before I could moderate him. I m a bit sad but can live with it. Ron Jeffries www.XProgramming.com www.xprogramming.com/blog Get over
                Message 7 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                  Hello, Ron. On Monday, January 5, 2009, at 6:52:36 AM, you wrote:

                  > Another insult, this time to all of us. Moderation for you.

                  He left on his own before I could moderate him. I'm a bit sad but
                  can live with it.

                  Ron Jeffries
                  www.XProgramming.com
                  www.xprogramming.com/blog
                  Get over it. -- The Eagles
                • Ola Ellnestam
                  ... Ron s [not so] random quote just made my day :-) Cheers, Ola -- ... Ola Ellnestam Agical AB Västerlånggatan 79, 2 tr 111 29 Stockholm, SWEDEN Mobile:
                  Message 8 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                    Ron Jeffries wrote:
                    >
                    > He left on his own before I could moderate him. I'm a bit sad but
                    > can live with it.
                    >
                    > Ron Jeffries
                    > www.XProgramming.com
                    > www.xprogramming.com/blog
                    > Get over it. -- The Eagles
                    >

                    Ron's [not so] random quote just made my day :-)

                    Cheers,
                    Ola



                    --
                    ---------------------------------------------------------
                    Ola Ellnestam
                    Agical AB
                    Västerlånggatan 79, 2 tr
                    111 29 Stockholm, SWEDEN

                    Mobile: +46-708-754000
                    E-mail: ola.ellnestam@...
                    Blog: http://ellnestam.wordpress.com
                  • Ron Jeffries
                    ... LOL. It was random. I didn t even see it till now. Ron Jeffries www.XProgramming.com www.xprogramming.com/blog If there s only one answer, then this must
                    Message 9 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                      Hello, Ola. On Monday, January 5, 2009, at 7:09:31 AM, you wrote:

                      >> Get over it. -- The Eagles

                      > Ron's [not so] random quote just made my day :-)

                      LOL. It was random. I didn't even see it till now.

                      Ron Jeffries
                      www.XProgramming.com
                      www.xprogramming.com/blog
                      If there's only one answer, then this must not be a very interesting topic.
                    • Chris Wheeler
                      On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 5:30 AM, Ron Jeffries ... I m not claiming to be any wiser in offering this opinion, because I ve certainly engaged in (and started) my
                      Message 10 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                        On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 5:30 AM, Ron Jeffries
                        <ronjeffries@...>wrote:

                        > The Collocation thread is shedding more heat and less light than it
                        > is worth, in my opinion. I am prepared, under this heading, to have
                        > my opinion reset by wiser heads than mine.
                        >
                        >
                        I'm not claiming to be any wiser in offering this opinion, because I've
                        certainly engaged in (and started) my share of fights around here.

                        Owen probably did have some good points to make. Unfortunately, by the time
                        I felt like engaging in the conversation (I'm actually on his side of the
                        opinion - I think collocation can be effective, virtually) it was so heated
                        that sparks flew between other participants and Owen regarding his response
                        to me, and I think the sparks flew because there was already some contention
                        present - I didn't find anything offensive in Owen's response, but I also
                        didn't have the emotional context that others had.

                        My only observation, for this group, is that sometimes, some people act a
                        little less open-minded and act a little too resistant to ideas that run
                        contrary to accepted practice in XP (whatever that nebulous thing is) and
                        that does tend to raise the ire of newcomers - though I can't say I'd label
                        anyone here as 'closeminded and resistant'. I've seen it happen over and
                        over when a newcomer broaches such a topic. Not so much when an old-timer
                        does it. I doubt it's as much close-mindedness so much as it is
                        unfamiliarity with the unwritten rules of engagement that veterans of the
                        list know how to navigate, as well as unfamiliarity with the regular
                        personalities that post here. Veterans tend to know when to say, 'Oh, Chris
                        has said it this way before, he's not being an ass (although he sounds like
                        one), what he really means is...and I'll respond to the implied meanings'.
                        Unfortunately, it's hard to be that generous with newcomers, though probably
                        not impossible - and leading back to virtual collocation, perhaps that's
                        where some of the art lies.

                        Just my 2 pence.

                        Chris.


                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      • John Roth
                        ... To split this into two pieces. First, I m not as sure about the dynamics as you seem to be. However, I agree that there are some interesting points that
                        Message 11 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                          Chris Wheeler said:


                          > On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 5:30 AM, Ron Jeffries
                          > <ronjeffries@...>wrote:
                          >
                          >> The Collocation thread is shedding more heat and less light than it
                          >> is worth, in my opinion. I am prepared, under this heading, to have
                          >> my opinion reset by wiser heads than mine.
                          >>
                          >>
                          > I'm not claiming to be any wiser in offering this opinion, because I've
                          > certainly engaged in (and started) my share of fights around here.
                          >
                          > Owen probably did have some good points to make. Unfortunately, by the
                          > time
                          > I felt like engaging in the conversation (I'm actually on his side of the
                          > opinion - I think collocation can be effective, virtually) it was so
                          > heated
                          > that sparks flew between other participants and Owen regarding his
                          > response
                          > to me, and I think the sparks flew because there was already some
                          > contention
                          > present - I didn't find anything offensive in Owen's response, but I also
                          > didn't have the emotional context that others had.

                          ...

                          > Chris.

                          To split this into two pieces. First, I'm not as sure about
                          the dynamics as you seem to be. However, I agree that
                          there are some interesting points that could have been made
                          if we'd maintained our cool a bit.

                          One thing that occurred to me is that, while a small co-located
                          team is, by just about all accounts from people with enough
                          experience to have a valid opinion, more productive than
                          anything else by a large margin, in a real setting it may be
                          a local optimization that actually drags the performance of the
                          entire chain down.

                          A second point that came up briefly didn't seem to get
                          the attention I thought it deserved: open source projects.
                          In some areas those are the poster children for a distributed
                          workflow. However ... most people advocating that approach
                          seem to ignore one interesting thing: quite a few of them have
                          gone to a process where some of the core developers will
                          get together during a meeting and hold a "sprint", where
                          everyone is together in the same room. It doesn't replace
                          the regular distributed open source process, but it does seem
                          to be very useful in other ways.

                          John Roth
                        • Charlie Poole
                          Hi Chris, ... If anyone cared enough to re-read and analyze all the responses in the thread, my guess is that you would find that Owen received as many
                          Message 12 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                            Hi Chris,

                            > My only observation, for this group, is that sometimes, some
                            > people act a little less open-minded and act a little too
                            > resistant to ideas that run contrary to accepted practice in
                            > XP (whatever that nebulous thing is) and that does tend to
                            > raise the ire of newcomers - though I can't say I'd label
                            > anyone here as 'closeminded and resistant'. I've seen it
                            > happen over and over when a newcomer broaches such a topic.
                            > Not so much when an old-timer does it. I doubt it's as much
                            > close-mindedness so much as it is unfamiliarity with the
                            > unwritten rules of engagement that veterans of the list know
                            > how to navigate, as well as unfamiliarity with the regular
                            > personalities that post here. Veterans tend to know when to
                            > say, 'Oh, Chris has said it this way before, he's not being
                            > an ass (although he sounds like one), what he really means
                            > is...and I'll respond to the implied meanings'.
                            > Unfortunately, it's hard to be that generous with newcomers,
                            > though probably not impossible - and leading back to virtual
                            > collocation, perhaps that's where some of the art lies.

                            If anyone cared enough to re-read and analyze all the responses
                            in the thread, my guess is that you would find that Owen received
                            as many positive responses as negative responses from folks here.
                            He chose to follow up on the negative responses, appearing to
                            prefer argument to collaboration, so counting text lines, the
                            thread was overwhelmingly negative.

                            We need to think about how we receive newcomers, but I want to
                            recognize that many people tried to help him out. It's hard when
                            somebody doesn't recognize a hand reaching out as a source of
                            help and knocks it away instead.

                            Does this list have any sort of written guidance on how we
                            behave here? If not, maybe we should. If so, maybe we should
                            refer people to it. I also think that such guidance could
                            include a bit of what you wrote above - about how we may
                            appear to treat old-timers by different standards from
                            newcomers and just why that is.

                            Charlie
                          • Victor
                            Hi Charlie, ... In the spirit of keeping things simple, and taking into account that the frequency of these kind of cases is not very high, I would suggest
                            Message 13 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                              Hi Charlie,

                              > Does this list have any sort of written guidance on how we
                              > behave here? If not, maybe we should.

                              In the spirit of keeping things simple, and taking into account that the
                              frequency of these kind of cases is not very high, I would suggest it's
                              premature to deal with this with such formality.

                              Víctor
                            • Tim Ottinger
                              De facto behavioral guidelines, drawn from observation, are: 1) Try not to be a jerk. 2) If you are a jerk, try not to act like one. 3) ... very often.
                              Message 14 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                De facto behavioral guidelines, drawn from observation, are:
                                1) Try not to be a jerk.
                                2) If you are a jerk, try not to act like one.
                                3) ... very often.


                                > From: Victor <vmgoldberg@...>
                                >
                                > Hi Charlie,
                                >
                                > > Does this list have any sort of written guidance on how we
                                > > behave here? If not, maybe we should.
                                >
                                > In the spirit of keeping things simple, and taking into account that the
                                > frequency of these kind of cases is not very high, I would suggest it's
                                > premature to deal with this with such formality.
                                >
                              • Charlie Poole
                                Hi Victor, ... Perhaps, but a text file such as many mailing lists have doesn t seem terribly formal, and cases of newcomers not knowing how to deal with the
                                Message 15 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                  Hi Victor,

                                  > In the spirit of keeping things simple, and taking into
                                  > account that the frequency of these kind of cases is not very
                                  > high, I would suggest it's premature to deal with this with
                                  > such formality.

                                  Perhaps, but a text file such as many mailing lists have
                                  doesn't seem terribly formal, and cases of newcomers not
                                  knowing how to deal with the list seems reasonably frequent.

                                  They just don't usually rise to a level where anyone
                                  but the newcomer is annoyed. :-)

                                  Charlie
                                • Jon Eaves
                                  ... I ve been on this list a long time, and only seen a couple of visitors that have been treated harshly . I d say it s not frequent at all. Maybe it s my
                                  Message 16 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                    Charlie Poole wrote:
                                    > Hi Victor,
                                    >
                                    >> In the spirit of keeping things simple, and taking into
                                    >> account that the frequency of these kind of cases is not very
                                    >> high, I would suggest it's premature to deal with this with
                                    >> such formality.
                                    >
                                    > Perhaps, but a text file such as many mailing lists have
                                    > doesn't seem terribly formal, and cases of newcomers not
                                    > knowing how to deal with the list seems reasonably frequent.
                                    >
                                    > They just don't usually rise to a level where anyone
                                    > but the newcomer is annoyed. :-)
                                    >

                                    I've been on this list a long time, and only seen a couple of visitors that have been treated
                                    "harshly". I'd say it's not frequent at all.

                                    Maybe it's my cultural upbringing, but if you go to another persons house, you don't insult their
                                    religion, political preference and choice of pet as the first thing you do. In the small number
                                    of cases where this list has been less than welcoming, the visitor has entered and without trying
                                    to ascribe motive here, appeared to "be spoiling for a fight".

                                    Much of what these posters have done is similar to go to a C# user group and abusing them for not
                                    using Java. Not something that anybody would think is polite, yet because the nature of this group
                                    is less "well defined", it seems that can occur more readily.

                                    As such, the group has resented these intrusion, maybe some parties have attempted reconciliation
                                    and understanding, but naturally a number of parties have felt aggrieved either initially or after
                                    longer contact.

                                    Having some form of vision may assist in our ongoing attempts to improve our introduction of new
                                    people to the list;

                                    "We are a group of people for which we value human contact on a daily basis as part of software
                                    development. We value being with our team members as social contacts as much as technology partners
                                    and as such we see software development primarily as a social and human interaction endeavour and
                                    not as a technical challenge.

                                    We value discussions on all forms of working as a team, and challenges to the way we do things, but
                                    claims about alternative work approaches should be initiated with full disclosure and in a scientific
                                    manner to gain the trust and co-operation of the members of the list."

                                    I think it would be advantageous to have a well crafted paragraph or 2 similar to the above which
                                    spells out the "shared vision" of the group as part of the join message (crafted by authors far more
                                    auspicious than my self of course).

                                    I do like my ideas challenged and questioned. However I do like the person who is doing this to
                                    be respectful, professional and considerate.

                                    Cheers,
                                    -- jon

                                    --
                                    Jon Eaves <jon@...>
                                    http://www.eaves.org/blog/
                                    Co-Author of "Apache Tomcat Bible", "Professional Tomcat 5", "Beginning JavaServer Pages"
                                  • Charlie Poole
                                    Hi Jon, ... I agree, but as you re replying to me, it seems like you have the impression that I said newcomers were treated harshly. I actually noted that we
                                    Message 17 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                      Hi Jon,

                                      > Charlie Poole wrote:
                                      > > Hi Victor,
                                      > >
                                      > >> In the spirit of keeping things simple, and taking into
                                      > account that
                                      > >> the frequency of these kind of cases is not very high, I would
                                      > >> suggest it's premature to deal with this with such formality.
                                      > >
                                      > > Perhaps, but a text file such as many mailing lists have
                                      > doesn't seem
                                      > > terribly formal, and cases of newcomers not knowing how to
                                      > deal with
                                      > > the list seems reasonably frequent.
                                      > >
                                      > > They just don't usually rise to a level where anyone but
                                      > the newcomer
                                      > > is annoyed. :-)
                                      > >
                                      >
                                      > I've been on this list a long time, and only seen a couple of
                                      > visitors that have been treated "harshly". I'd say it's not
                                      > frequent at all.

                                      I agree, but as you're replying to me, it seems like you have
                                      the impression that I said newcomers were treated harshly. I
                                      actually noted that we treated the recent newcomer much better
                                      than some folks seem to think we did.

                                      I suggested a text file about "how to behave here" so that
                                      newcomers would know how to behave, since there is evidence
                                      that they don't always know.

                                      > Maybe it's my cultural upbringing, but if you go to another
                                      > persons house, you don't insult their religion, political
                                      > preference and choice of pet as the first thing you do. In
                                      > the small number of cases where this list has been less than
                                      > welcoming, the visitor has entered and without trying to
                                      > ascribe motive here, appeared to "be spoiling for a fight".
                                      >
                                      > Much of what these posters have done is similar to go to a C#
                                      > user group and abusing them for not using Java. Not
                                      > something that anybody would think is polite, yet because the
                                      > nature of this group is less "well defined", it seems that
                                      > can occur more readily.
                                      >
                                      > As such, the group has resented these intrusion, maybe some
                                      > parties have attempted reconciliation and understanding, but
                                      > naturally a number of parties have felt aggrieved either
                                      > initially or after longer contact.

                                      That as happened. Such folks have been dealt with as they
                                      should be, IMO. It's not for them that I expressed concern.

                                      > Having some form of vision may assist in our ongoing attempts
                                      > to improve our introduction of new people to the list;
                                      >
                                      > "We are a group of people for which we value human contact on
                                      > a daily basis as part of software development. We value
                                      > being with our team members as social contacts as much as
                                      > technology partners and as such we see software development
                                      > primarily as a social and human interaction endeavour and not
                                      > as a technical challenge.
                                      >
                                      > We value discussions on all forms of working as a team, and
                                      > challenges to the way we do things, but claims about
                                      > alternative work approaches should be initiated with full
                                      > disclosure and in a scientific manner to gain the trust and
                                      > co-operation of the members of the list."
                                      >
                                      > I think it would be advantageous to have a well crafted
                                      > paragraph or 2 similar to the above which spells out the
                                      > "shared vision" of the group as part of the join message
                                      > (crafted by authors far more auspicious than my self of course).
                                      >
                                      > I do like my ideas challenged and questioned. However I do
                                      > like the person who is doing this to be respectful,
                                      > professional and considerate.

                                      I think there is also some practical, down-to-earth info that
                                      a newcomer could use. Like...

                                      "We don't moderate your messages in advance, but we do have
                                      moderators. If you are warned by a moderator, that means
                                      you are out of bounds, and you could be removed from the list."

                                      Or "We consider the t-word out of bounds here." Except we
                                      would have to say the word. :-)

                                      My point is that there are some general things that we
                                      have a right to expect from anybody, but other more
                                      specific info that folks won't have untless we tell them.

                                      Charlie



                                      > Cheers,
                                      > -- jon
                                      >
                                      > --
                                      > Jon Eaves <jon@...>
                                      > http://www.eaves.org/blog/
                                      > Co-Author of "Apache Tomcat Bible", "Professional Tomcat 5",
                                      > "Beginning JavaServer Pages"
                                      >
                                      > ------------------------------------
                                      >
                                      > To Post a message, send it to: extremeprogramming@...
                                      >
                                      > To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
                                      > extremeprogramming-unsubscribe@...
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                                      >
                                      >
                                      >
                                      >
                                    • Chris Wheeler
                                      On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 6:21 PM, Charlie Poole ... It s interesting to note how my original message has evolved into newcomers treated harshly and a judgment
                                      Message 18 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                        On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 6:21 PM, Charlie Poole
                                        <charlie@...>wrote:

                                        > I agree, but as you're replying to me, it seems like you have
                                        > the impression that I said newcomers were treated harshly. I
                                        > actually noted that we treated the recent newcomer much better
                                        > than some folks seem to think we did.
                                        >

                                        It's interesting to note how my original message has evolved into 'newcomers
                                        treated harshly' and a judgment of newcomer treatment. My point didn't come
                                        out right if that is where we've gotten.

                                        Owen et al., got into a situation where an otherwise good topic got munged
                                        into a thread of hurt feelings and nasty argument. There is no blame
                                        assignment here - the dynamics of the situation was such that it reminded me
                                        of past newcomers with different ideas, even challenging ideas, hell, even
                                        fight-picking ideas, and the same thing happened. It doesn't always happen,
                                        but it has happened, of that I'm sure. And without looking through the
                                        archives, I can't provide a 'number of times' statistic. But my gut tells me
                                        that a newcomer with a challenging idea is more likely to get into a fight
                                        with us than a newcomer asking a vanilla 'why is TDD good?' question.

                                        I'm not offering any solutions, just as I'm not assigning blame or
                                        pinpointing cause; I don't really have any of those three things. But, if
                                        this was an XP team, and it was Friday retrospective time, I'd write a card
                                        that says 'We seem to get into lot's of fights with newcomers.' and put it
                                        on the board.

                                        Chris.


                                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                      • Charlie Poole
                                        Hi Chris, ... I m afraid this thread is getting too complicated to follow. :-) I don t want to get into a he-said/he-said discussion, but I will call your
                                        Message 19 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                          Hi Chris,

                                          > -----Original Message-----
                                          > From: extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com
                                          > [mailto:extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Chris Wheeler
                                          > Sent: Monday, January 05, 2009 5:49 PM
                                          > To: extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com
                                          > Subject: Re: [XP] [MOD] "Virtual" Collocation
                                          >
                                          > On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 6:21 PM, Charlie Poole
                                          > <charlie@...>wrote:
                                          >
                                          > > I agree, but as you're replying to me, it seems like you have the
                                          > > impression that I said newcomers were treated harshly. I actually
                                          > > noted that we treated the recent newcomer much better than
                                          > some folks
                                          > > seem to think we did.
                                          > >
                                          >
                                          > It's interesting to note how my original message has evolved
                                          > into 'newcomers treated harshly' and a judgment of newcomer
                                          > treatment. My point didn't come out right if that is where
                                          > we've gotten.

                                          I'm afraid this thread is getting too complicated to follow. :-)

                                          I don't want to get into a he-said/he-said discussion, but I will
                                          call your attention to the first two words of my post, which you
                                          quote above. They were "Hi Jon."

                                          In other words my comment had nothing to do with you, or anything
                                          you wrote. It was in reply to Jon, who brought up the "harsh"
                                          issue in reaction to my suggestion of a standard set of guidelines.

                                          I see now that I should have changed the subject line when I
                                          introduced the topic of guidelines.

                                          Charlie
                                        • Charlie Poole
                                          Hi Chris, ... I don t see this past discussion as a newcomer with a challenging idea, I see it as a newcomer who came into the room without pausing to see who
                                          Message 20 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                            Hi Chris,

                                            > Owen et al., got into a situation where an otherwise good
                                            > topic got munged into a thread of hurt feelings and nasty
                                            > argument. There is no blame assignment here - the dynamics of
                                            > the situation was such that it reminded me of past newcomers
                                            > with different ideas, even challenging ideas, hell, even
                                            > fight-picking ideas, and the same thing happened. It doesn't
                                            > always happen, but it has happened, of that I'm sure. And
                                            > without looking through the archives, I can't provide a
                                            > 'number of times' statistic. But my gut tells me that a
                                            > newcomer with a challenging idea is more likely to get into a
                                            > fight with us than a newcomer asking a vanilla 'why is TDD
                                            > good?' question.

                                            I don't see this past discussion as a newcomer with a challenging
                                            idea, I see it as a newcomer who came into the room without
                                            pausing to see who was there and how they conducted themselves
                                            and who, therefore, was not well equipped to present that idea.

                                            When I tried to suggest approaches (offline) to Owen, I found
                                            that he tended to take the suggestions as criticisms. That
                                            led me to think that some sort of general guidance document
                                            might have been helpful, since it would eliminate the possibility
                                            of perceiving the person who tries to help as a challenger.

                                            > I'm not offering any solutions, just as I'm not assigning
                                            > blame or pinpointing cause; I don't really have any of those
                                            > three things. But, if this was an XP team, and it was Friday
                                            > retrospective time, I'd write a card that says 'We seem to
                                            > get into lot's of fights with newcomers.' and put it on the board.

                                            I was, in fact, offering a solution, perhaps prematurely. I could be
                                            wrong about what I felt I was seeing, but it's all I have.

                                            Charlie
                                            > Chris.
                                            >
                                            >
                                            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                            >
                                            >
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                                          • Mike Hill
                                            Whoa whoa whoa. *What* t-word?? All the ones I could think of were profane and hence already used here by me. Hill
                                            Message 21 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                              Whoa whoa whoa.

                                              *What* t-word?? All the ones I could think of were profane and hence
                                              already used here by me.

                                              Hill
                                            • Adam Sroka
                                              Though no one has called me out specifically, I admit that I am partly to blame. I was going a little hard on Owen, particularly towards the end of the thread.
                                              Message 22 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                                Though no one has called me out specifically, I admit that I am partly
                                                to blame. I was going a little hard on Owen, particularly towards the
                                                end of the thread. Despite the fact that I still believe I had a
                                                point... ;-) I could have been a bit more cordial.

                                                Another thing: some of you probably aren't aware of the following two facts:

                                                1) Owen started this thread on the Agile-Usability Yahoo! list. When
                                                he didn't like the answers he got there he came here. I tried to
                                                engage him in the earlier thread on the other list. I only became
                                                frustrated after the third or fourth time he said exactly the same
                                                things and ignored the counter-arguments.

                                                2) When Owen started the thread here he contacted me off list. He
                                                wanted to complain about the way Ron had responded to his posts on the
                                                Agile-Usability list. I told him that I had "known" Ron (In the
                                                context of this and other forums) for about seven years and I thought
                                                he was reading something into the responses that wasn't there. It was
                                                already clear at that point that he was taking criticism - real or
                                                perceived - as personal rather than as a response to his ideas.
                                                Interesting, because he claimed to come here to hear the arguments
                                                against.

                                                Oh well. I don't want to see anybody have to walk away with hurt
                                                feelings, but sometimes there just isn't a resolution to be had.
                                              • Ron Jeffries
                                                Hello, Chris. On Monday, January 5, 2009, at 8:48:46 PM, you ... In most of the cases I recall, the newcomers came on pretty hard and without much sensitivity
                                                Message 23 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                                  Hello, Chris. On Monday, January 5, 2009, at 8:48:46 PM, you
                                                  wrote:

                                                  > I'm not offering any solutions, just as I'm not assigning blame or
                                                  > pinpointing cause; I don't really have any of those three things. But, if
                                                  > this was an XP team, and it was Friday retrospective time, I'd write a card
                                                  > that says 'We seem to get into lot's of fights with newcomers.' and put it
                                                  > on the board.

                                                  In most of the cases I recall, the newcomers came on pretty hard and
                                                  without much sensitivity to the fact that they were entering someone
                                                  else's club house. That's not to say we mightn't be nicer, but
                                                  generally what I recall has been somewhat troll-like behavior,
                                                  coupled with a quick tendency to take things personally and go
                                                  personal.

                                                  Again, we could be nicer, and I think we should be. Rudeness is
                                                  never justified, but I think it is sometimes understandable.

                                                  Ron Jeffries
                                                  www.XProgramming.com
                                                  www.xprogramming.com/blog
                                                  Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself.
                                                  (I am large, I contain multitudes.) --Walt Whitman
                                                • Jon Eaves
                                                  ... Not at all Charlie. I just hijacked your message to respond to the thread. Apologies for incorrect attributions perceived or otherwise. Nothing to see
                                                  Message 24 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                                    Charlie Poole wrote:
                                                    > Hi Jon,
                                                    >
                                                    >
                                                    > I agree, but as you're replying to me, it seems like you have
                                                    > the impression that I said newcomers were treated harshly. I
                                                    > actually noted that we treated the recent newcomer much better
                                                    > than some folks seem to think we did.

                                                    Not at all Charlie. I just hijacked your message to respond to the
                                                    thread. Apologies for incorrect attributions perceived or otherwise.

                                                    Nothing to see here, move along.

                                                    Cheers,
                                                    -- jon

                                                    --
                                                    Jon Eaves <jon@...>
                                                    http://www.eaves.org/blog/
                                                    Co-Author of "Apache Tomcat Bible", "Professional Tomcat 5", "Beginning JavaServer Pages"
                                                  • Jon Eaves
                                                    ... This was a much more direct way to saying what I did. I think it behooves us to set the expectations that if you come and insult our dog, we might be a
                                                    Message 25 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                                      Ron Jeffries wrote:
                                                      >
                                                      > Again, we could be nicer, and I think we should be. Rudeness is
                                                      > never justified, but I think it is sometimes understandable.

                                                      This was a much more direct way to saying what I did. I think it behooves us to set the expectations
                                                      that if you come and insult our dog, we might be a little testy towards that, and combined with the
                                                      ideas that Charlie raised would make a good introduction to the community via some form.


                                                      Cheers,
                                                      -- jon

                                                      >
                                                      > Ron Jeffries
                                                      > www.XProgramming.com
                                                      > www.xprogramming.com/blog
                                                      > Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself.
                                                      > (I am large, I contain multitudes.) --Walt Whitman
                                                      >

                                                      --
                                                      Jon Eaves <jon@...>
                                                      http://www.eaves.org/blog/
                                                      Co-Author of "Apache Tomcat Bible", "Professional Tomcat 5", "Beginning JavaServer Pages"
                                                    • Steven Gordon
                                                      On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 8:31 PM, Ron Jeffries ... The way I experienced the thread is that the guy can in looking for a fight, and due to our collective
                                                      Message 26 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                                        On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 8:31 PM, Ron Jeffries
                                                        <ronjeffries@...> wrote:
                                                        > Hello, Chris. On Monday, January 5, 2009, at 8:48:46 PM, you
                                                        > wrote:
                                                        >
                                                        >> I'm not offering any solutions, just as I'm not assigning blame or
                                                        >> pinpointing cause; I don't really have any of those three things. But, if
                                                        >> this was an XP team, and it was Friday retrospective time, I'd write a
                                                        >> card
                                                        >> that says 'We seem to get into lot's of fights with newcomers.' and put it
                                                        >> on the board.
                                                        >
                                                        > In most of the cases I recall, the newcomers came on pretty hard and
                                                        > without much sensitivity to the fact that they were entering someone
                                                        > else's club house. That's not to say we mightn't be nicer, but
                                                        > generally what I recall has been somewhat troll-like behavior,
                                                        > coupled with a quick tendency to take things personally and go
                                                        > personal.
                                                        >
                                                        > Again, we could be nicer, and I think we should be. Rudeness is
                                                        > never justified, but I think it is sometimes understandable.

                                                        The way I experienced the thread is that the guy can in looking for a
                                                        fight, and due to our collective tendency to address points rather
                                                        than personalities it took quite a while before he finally found a
                                                        sufficient fight.

                                                        Things might have played out differently if we all had had access to
                                                        each other's pheromones and body languages. ;-}

                                                        Steve

                                                        >
                                                        > Ron Jeffries
                                                        > www.XProgramming.com
                                                        > www.xprogramming.com/blog
                                                        > Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself.
                                                        > (I am large, I contain multitudes.) --Walt Whitman
                                                        >
                                                      • Charlie Poole
                                                        Hi Jon, ... LOL Charlie
                                                        Message 27 of 29 , Jan 5, 2009
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                                                          Hi Jon,

                                                          > ... if you come and insult our dog ...

                                                          LOL

                                                          Charlie
                                                        • Ron Jeffries
                                                          Hello, Steven. On Tuesday, January 6, 2009, at 12:12:35 AM, you ... /me holds nose. You stink! Ron Jeffries www.XProgramming.com www.xprogramming.com/blog
                                                          Message 28 of 29 , Jan 6, 2009
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                                                            Hello, Steven. On Tuesday, January 6, 2009, at 12:12:35 AM, you
                                                            wrote:

                                                            > Things might have played out differently if we all had had access to
                                                            > each other's pheromones and body languages. ;-}

                                                            /me holds nose. "You stink!"

                                                            Ron Jeffries
                                                            www.XProgramming.com
                                                            www.xprogramming.com/blog
                                                            Questioner: How do I sell my executive team on doing this stuff?
                                                            Jim Highsmith: Don't. Just do it. They don't know what you're doing anyway.
                                                          • George Dinwiddie
                                                            ... There are /some/ guidelines posted at http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/extremeprogramming/ though they emphasize not spamming. There are a couple points
                                                            Message 29 of 29 , Jan 6, 2009
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                                                              Charlie Poole wrote:
                                                              > I suggested a text file about "how to behave here" so that
                                                              > newcomers would know how to behave, since there is evidence
                                                              > that they don't always know.

                                                              There are /some/ guidelines posted at
                                                              http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/extremeprogramming/ though they
                                                              emphasize not spamming. There are a couple points that even regular
                                                              participants would do well to remember.

                                                              6. Everyone has the right to respond in any respectful way that they
                                                              see fit.

                                                              This includes describing pie-in-the-sky dreams (which is, unfortunately,
                                                              all /I/ got out of Owens' descriptions).

                                                              5. No one has the obligation to respond in any way to any message.

                                                              I often have to remind myself that the world doesn't need my opinion on
                                                              every subject. And that when I've given my opinion, and it's not been
                                                              accepted by the intended recipient, that's OK, too. Certainly when I
                                                              type a response in haste it's a clue that I should be slow to hit the
                                                              send button. Often I find "delete" more useful, as the message served
                                                              more as a cathartic than it would as communication.

                                                              It's easy to tell others how they should behave on the list. It's more
                                                              effective, in my experience, to tell myself.

                                                              - George

                                                              --
                                                              ----------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                              * George Dinwiddie * http://blog.gdinwiddie.com
                                                              Software Development http://www.idiacomputing.com
                                                              Consultant and Coach http://www.agilemaryland.org
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