Jan 23, 2010

mute-deaf at Innovation Game online

I was all exited about the opportunity to participate on an online Innovation Game with folks from APLN and BayAPLN while still abroad on business. I logged in and proceeded to dial in to the conference from a telephone only to come to a halt because the conference call requires a "#" at the end of the code and the long distance service at the place where I am staying interprets it as a call to operator so there was no way I could reach the conference call.

But where there's a will there's a way. I thought it would be an interesting experiment to see how effectively I could go about participating on the game while on a mute-deaf state. The game started and I felt I was at at real disadvange at first but soon after I realized that the entire environment provided an quite complete and friendly environment such that I soon forgot all about the audio feedback. For sure there were interesting conversations going on that I was missing, but the information I was getting through the game board itself, the text tab, and the actions tab were providing enough information for me to not only follow through but to also contribute!

Comparing the online experience with a face-to-face experience I would say that:
  • Face-to-face has the benefits of not only more effective verbal communication but also body language and higher encouragement for all stakeholders to participate.
  • Online has the benefits of counting on a log, making it easy for people to think more carefully about something or re-visit something without breaking the rhythm or distracting others.
Also, my being mute-deaf throughout the exercise proves the effectiveness of the playground experience that innovation games bring to the matter being discussed.

Jan 19, 2010

MexAPLN meeting: January 2010

The second meeting of the MexAPLN was way better than the first one. The meeting was at the IDS offices. IDS is one of the two oldest sw dev services businesses in Mexico. Its building has a beautiful view of the 4th and 5th highest mountains in all of the American Continent.

This being the second session it was obviously very org related and the main subjects were:
  • Alejandor Escamilla from Software Guru reported that they received over 400 responses from a member's blog posted on its website
  • 12 people (including myself) attended the meeting, 5 of them first-time. One person actually drove 180 miles one-way just to be there and headed back to his city of origin, Morelia, the next morning! ...and I used to think my 60-mile drive was significant.
  • We talked about what we need to do to be accepted as an actual chapter, about sponsorship and about logistics on meetings.
  • I reported that VersionOne showed a lot of enthusiasm about becoming an sponsor once we are ready for it
  • Main topic was Chartering. Since we were running out of time we decided to do some off-line work, discussing via web-conference to get more done and by the next meeting at which time we'll give it thumbs-up or down.
  • We decided to use Google groups instead of Yahoo groups as one of our comm tools.
  • Next meeting is at the offices or Software Guru.
Too much material for one session, of course but there was good progress.

Once this is done we'll have the foundation and a good start to become a relevant chapter.

Thanks to everyone who has contributed.

*** Important Note:
Paul Culling from VersionOne wrote a comment on the original posting, on which I used the workd "demands". My response is: Paul, I apologize if the word created some interpretation. One of the definitions of "demand" is "the requirement of work". The communication through Cesar has been quite clear and I informed at the meeting that VersionOne will be happy to become a sponsor, but first we have to prove that we are an active community of practitioners of agile and lean, and that is what is the requirement of work we have to do to earn your sponsorship.
I edited the posting in hope that you agree with the new wording, otherwise let me know and I'll be happy to rephrase it.
~Masa K Maeda