Barcamp Cambridge

So… BarCamp Cambridge, or BarCamb as we’re affectionately calling it is definitely green for go.

To be hosted at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute near Cambridge it’s hopefully going to be a day of grass-roots science and technology talks on the 24th of August. That’s two months away last Sunday so plenty of time to unorganise it.

Should be interesting and I think I’m looking forward to it though I’m not sure what to expect. It could, of course, be an utter disaster, but what better area to have it than Cambridge, and what better site than the Genome Campus, however biased I might be?

I always dread saying this, but “more coming soon” I hope!

Sporting Developments

I recently started reading Agile Software Development with Scrum by Schwaber and Beedle. It’s a great introduction to this branch of the Agile movement. It’s easy to read and contains practical advice and straight-forward explainations of the terms and processes involved with Scrum.

Even more satisfying than the read itself was the realisation that I’ve been using a good number of the Scrum techniques in managing projects within my team for the last three years or so. I love the idea of a development team reaching a nirvana-like hyper-productive state though one of the examples of a four-person team at Quattro producing 1000 lines of C++ a week took me aback.

In the middle of last month I moved to a new position at WTSI, Team Leader for the New Sequencing Pipeline development team (currently consisting of me). Since then I’ve been working on what I’ll now call a code sprint and last week I had my first product increment. The product is a smallish system for tracking runs on the new technology sequencing machines but is around 10,000 lines of Perl (excluding templates, CSS & tests) built on a light MVC framework I produced in the same time. A one man-team producing 3,333 loc in a week seems ultra-productive and I can’t believe it’s *purely* down to the fact that Perl is easier to write than C++.

Anyway, I’m on a C++ course all next week, so I’ll soon be able to tell. Shame it’s not about Rails instead ;)