Weekly Thing

Weekly Newsletter from
Jamie Thingelstad

#57 • Jun 9, 2018 • Permalink


With much fanfare and anticipation the school year has ended, and with it summer has officially started! 🏁 Now is the time to take a moment to savor it all. In a blink it will be fall, the kids will be heading back to school and it will have felt like 5 minutes. I'm hoping to soak in the summer a bit more this year.


My Blog Posts ✍️

DevOps Minneapolis: Changing the Enterprise Session

I was on a panel this week at the DevOps meetup and got to speak to a number of topics about tech, best practices and some of my approaches to common problems in tech.


Featured Links 🏅

Laziness Does Not Exist – E Price – Medium

This article is written from the position of a psychology professor understanding students, but it caught my attention and make me remember Do The Work by Steven Pressfield as well.

If a person’s behavior doesn’t make sense to you, it is because you are missing a part of their context. It’s that simple. I’m so grateful to Kim and their writing for making me aware of this fact. No psychology class, at any level, taught me that. But now that it is a lens that I have, I find myself applying it to all kinds of behaviors that are mistaken for signs of moral failure — and I’ve yet to find one that can’t be explained and empathized with.

I read this in the context of leadership and it is a good reminder that as a leader and manager you need to start with the assumption that people are trying to do the right thing. Most people want to do the right thing and be successful.

People do not choose to fail or disappoint. No one wants to feel incapable, apathetic, or ineffective. If you look at a person’s action (or inaction) and see only laziness, you are missing key details. There is always an explanation. There are always barriers. Just because you can’t see them, or don’t view them as legitimate, doesn’t mean they’re not there. Look harder.

This is a great call to action for leaders. If you see a lack of progress, what might you be missing that is inhibiting that progress?


How Disney is turning women from across the company into coders

This is an impressive program that Disney is running to get more women into technology roles.

The CODE in CODE: Rosie stands for Creating Opportunities for Diverse Engineers. The “Rosie” part references Rosie the Riveter, the symbol of World War II’s working women; an internal CODE Rosie logo even depicts Minnie Mouse in Rosie’s iconic rolled-up-sleeve pose. In particular, the program pays tribute to the “Rosies” who programmed the U.S. Army’s pioneering ENIAC computer back in the 1940s.

It is impressive in its scope and I admire the approach. A program like this could make a difference. 🤔


My Weekly Photo 📷

The sun setting after a fabulous day of fun on Cannon Lake. Minnesota is beautiful. 💚

The sun setting after a fabulous day of fun on Cannon Lake.
Jun 2, 2018 at 8:46 PM
Cannon Lake, Minnesota


Notable Links 📌

How to Organize a Working Group | Lara Hogan

I liked the structure and specificity in this how-to guide.

“Working groups” is a hand-wavy term that can mean a lot of things; I use this term to describe a small group of people who come together with a common goal/deliverable, acting as representatives of the larger organization.

Planning this part of a working group is necessary to be successful in the outcome.


Performance Reviews Are a Waste of Time – Bradfield

Formal feedback mechanisms in companies are hard. I've come to think of performance reviews as an organizational insurance policy. The process and mechanism for them insures that a bare minimum of dialog is happening. I really don't know of anybody that feels that they are an effective way of leading and managing teams. I think that is summarized in the common refrain that there should be nothing new learned in a performance review.


Microsoft Just Put a Data Center on the Bottom of the Ocean - Motherboard

This is just cool. Microsoft put a bunch of servers in a tube and put it in the ocean! 💦 They highlight that the cooling provided by the water is a big benefit, and that makes sense. In most data centers half of the energy is used to cool equipment. It’s just goofy to think of a bunch of servers floating around under the water. 🤯


Doc Searls Weblog · What’s wrong with bots is they’re not ours

Totally agree with Doc Searls on this. I have some "bots" that work for me, and they are ridiculously helpful. They don't sell it this way, but Sanebox is a lot like a bot for my email. Unfortunately the majority of bot investment is for corporations, not people.


WWDC 2018: Apple Just Made Safari the Good Privacy Browser | WIRED

I 💙 Safari, and the privacy focus of Safari is a big part of it. That wasn't always the case, but over the last few years Apple has started to lead and even use this as a leading feature. I use Safari with 1Blocker and Ghostery, as well with all privacy settings set high. These additional features will be great!


The Secret Reason that Development Teams Struggle to Deliver On Time, On Budget, or On Scope – 7pace Blog

I think this article oversimplifies the problem, but it does highlight at least one type of problem when estimating software effort. Software teams far too often skip the planning process. Using data for planning, specifically velocity metrics, is also key. This article doesn't track the issue of progressive discovery of your requirements, which in my opinion is a bigger issue, but this is a good read nonetheless.


Leadership Principles

Leadership principles from the US Marine Corps. I like the lists in the "develop" side of this. If you're looking for topic areas to focus on, this would be a good place to inventory your skills and decide where to invest.


How to be a Manager

An attempt at an overall guide to all things about managing. Expansive in scope, and certainly has some gems to pick from.


Our management doesn’t – Serious Scrum – Medium

A guide for pushing Scrum practices into the management layer in your organization.


AI at Google: our principles — Google

Google recently withdrew itself from a Pentagon contract because of internal pressure from employees. Now the CEO of Google is framing up how they will use AI technology. We are getting into ethics here, which is a good thing. AI will force technology companies to make some hard decisions on the application. I hope we do a better job than we did with privacy.


Introducing sole-tenant nodes for Google Compute Engine — when sharing isn’t an option — Google Cloud Platform

I’m surprised to see the big cloud providers supporting these solutions. It’s counter-cloud in many ways, but required by some anti-cloud licensing practices and challenging audit requirements.


Microsoft + GitHub = Empowering Developers — Official Microsoft Blog

Microsoft has been doing really interesting things for a while, and this acquisition of GitHub is a smart one. I honestly would have rather GitHub stay independent, but I think Microsoft will do a good job with it.


macOS Mojave: The MacStories Overview — MacStories

Apple announced the next major release of macOS. This has all the big features in it. I don't see a lot in here though that gets me really excited. Everyone should upgrade, but it feels like polishing and not a lot of innovation.


watchOS 5: The MacStories Overview — MacStories

Overview of new features in watchOS 5. Continuing to push on fitness features. The Walkie-Talkie app looks interesting. Siri watch face improvements look great. You can see a path where Siri watch face is the main way that you interact with your watch. WebKit coming to watchOS is new, but not sure how useful that will be.


iOS 12: The MacStories Overview — MacStories

A thorough overview of new iOS 12 features announced at WWDC. The new Shortcuts app tells us what Apple had in mind when it bought Workflow. The new Screen Time features are a very welcome addition both for personal and family use.


Teens, Social Media & Technology 2018 | Pew Research Center

A lot of data on where teens are spending their time online. I don't join the chorus of marketers seeking to follow "what the kids are doing" all over the place. Look at the platforms used. It worries me that it’s all self-absorbed, mind-numbing, "amusing ourselves to death" social media. Given the world in our pocket, this is what we do? 🤦‍♂️


Give Back 🎁

The Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. is a nonprofit charitable organization dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free, multilingual, educational content, and to providing the full content of these wiki-based projects to the public free of charge. The Wikimedia Foundation operates some of the largest collaboratively edited reference projects in the world, including Wikipedia, a top-ten internet property. Donate to Wikimedia today!


Highlighted iOS App 📱

OmniFocus 3
by The Omni Group

Use OmniFocus to accomplish more every day. Create projects and tasks, organize them with tags, focus on what you can do right now — and get stuff done.

I've been using OmniFocus since it came out on macOS. It continues to be my most frequently used, and trusted appliactions. I've been enjoying the changes in this new version. I think the team at Omni Software hit the mark making this very powerful tool simultaneously more powerful, and easier to use.


Yet More Links 🍞


Microposts 🎈

Thursday @ 3:09 PM

Great Minnestar board meeting today! Lucky to be part of a great organization helping to connect the Twin Cities technology community. 🙌


Tuesday @ 9:27 PM

Nice turnout tonight for the Dev Ops Minneapolis meetup. 👍 It makes me happy that we can host the community at @SPS_Commerce! 🙌


Tuesday @ 8:51 PM

I had a great time talking about Changing the Enterprise at tonight’s DevOps Minneapolis Meetup with Heather Mickman (Twitter: @hmickman) and Bridget Kromhout (Twitter: @bridgetkromhout)! Great insights and an amazing community!


Tuesday @ 6:29 AM

US Internet speed test using Fast. Multiple tests ranged from 930-1000 Mbps.


Monday @ 6:45 PM

US Internet completed my fiber install today! Flipping over was as easy as swapping a cable and a reboot of the Eero. Great speed! 🙌🏻⚡️


Sunday @ 11:25 PM

My productivity geek wish for tomorrow’s WWDC event is to learn what Apple had in mind when it bought Workflow. 🤓


Sunday @ 5:15 PM

I’d rather GitHub stay independent, but of all that could buy it, Microsoft feels okay.


Sunday @ 3:58 PM

Espresso time. ☕️


Sunday @ 2:05 PM

Took advantage of cool weather this morning and spent 2 hours clearing brush from the lakeshore. Nice before/after from the Dropcam.


Saturday @ 10:49 PM

Was a great evening for s’mores! 🔥


Saturday @ 9:28 PM

Introduced a bunch of new people to Skittles today. 👍🏻


Fortune 🥠

You've made it all the way to the end! 👏 Here is your fortune for this week.

Cheerfulness smooths the road of life.

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