The Backlog

I had one of those "changing the way we work" discussions today, about the product backlog. I'll spare you the details, but it came down to answering two questions: How many of the stories we know about should we have on the product backlog? How many of the stories do »

How I Code

One of the things I like about the way the tech industry has changed since I cut my first production code is that even the senior guys and girls are expected to be able to roll up their sleeves and hack some code every once in a while. I don't »

Planning isn't free

I've got a confession to make: I secretly enjoy rewriting code when requirements change. I get to think again about what I was doing and my assumptions, tidy up the lingering technical debt, make a few performance optimisations and abstract things a little bit so I don't have to worry »

ln(t): The startup growth problem

Here's an article that I found in my backlog, and realised I never got round to publishing. When I wrote it I was thinking predominately about startups, but on reflection there's a lot of relevance to organisations of any size; particularly ones that are going through a lot of change, »


Firefighting is one of the biggest and most common causes of lost productivity and morale in software development. It usually manifests as developers being pulled off their project to urgently fix something - the live site is spewing 500 errors, there's a button in the wrong place, or a senior »

Why enterprise companies are sinking in the flood

There's a question enterprise companies ask about startups. "How are we being beaten by ten guys in a loft in Shoreditch? We've got so many more resources than they have!" And more often than not when challenged they double down on more - more planning, more market research, more project »