Hi there, I’m Eric; I help people effectively discover, implement, and evolve software-based products and services as a Developer, Architect, and Development Manager. In recent years I have also been both a trainer and coach for development teams, both in development practices and processes–primarily Lean/Kanban and Scrum.
I occasionally write, mainly for clients or for this site. I am also occasionally a speaker for local meetup groups or conferences like Keep Austin Agile and Product Camp. I also facilitate workshops for developers.
I specialize in helping developers and teams work effectively with the rest of the business and have consulted with companies from the Fortune 500 down to startups. I have also helped build a business from being the first employee to seven figures in revenue.
I am one of those people that got started with computers at an early age when it wasn’t that common. You’ve heard those kinds of stories told I’m sure so I won’t bore you with the details of mine. But through my parents I also was exposed to arts, crafts, electronics, amateur radio, woodworking, carpentry, and many other pursuits. I added a love of (making) music and today I largely identify as a Maker and Craftsman.
When I had a degree in Computer Science and a handfull of working years as a programmer under my belt I was introduced to something else–the Agile movement. I had experiences just enough frustration with the way things worked that when Extreme Programming appeared I found colleagues that were willing to try and it was a great experience. Since then I have been with companies and teams that explored other similar ways of working, primarily Scrum and Kanban.
In recent years I have worked as an Kanban/Scrum coach and as a Development Coach working with teams on technical practices. My views on agility have evolved over the years–something I’ll surely write about here–and I currently focus on values and principles rooted coaching and technical coaching.
When I started working professionally Object-Oriented programming had become dominant and my career so far has been dominant in it. I missed the early days where Smalltalk reigned and only recently have experienced the push to return to roots Object-Orientation. These days I am adding on experience with functional programming which has seen a resurgence in popularity using languages both old and new.
I have worked on products from desktop software, to mobile software, to SaaS and cloud based infrastructure. I have been fortunate to work in some interesting domains including Financial Market Analysis and Trading Systems, Route Optimization and Scheduling, Contract Management, eDiscovery, Health Care, and eBook publishing.
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Views On Software Development
I take fundamentally pragmatic and customer focused approach to software development based of attention to detail, management of skills, and desire to connect with the customer.
I believe that software development, like other disciplines, shouldn’t be primarily a short-term path to other job responsibilities while the next generation of developer is left to re-learn. To achieve this requires people to continue doing what they love while taking on the additional responsibility to mentor and guide those who are willing. There is also a responsibility to continue learning, growing, and improving rather than continually repeating the same experience.
I have long been a participant in Agile and Lean communities in an attempt to find better ways of delivering software focused on the needs of a user, customer, or business. I have been through and used Extreme Programming, Scrum, and Kanban and have retained a strong focus on technical practices like those described in Extreme Programming. While I still find these useful tools, I believe they should be used carefully where there is first a focused on values and principles.