Mike Bland

Organizational culture change Instigator and Stratocaster aficionado

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I delivered a talk on the importance of documentation and training to the culture change mission during the Chadevs weekly lunch Meetup.

- Chattanooga
Tags: Federal government, Google, Test Mercenaries, Testing Grouplet, Testing on the Toilet
Discuss: Discuss ""Making the Right Thing the Easy Thing" presentation" on Google+

The video of my "Making the Right Thing the Easy Thing" presentation from today’s Chadevs weekly lunch Meetup is already available. I’ve also already posted the "Making the Right Thing the Easy Thing" slides. The organizer, Brett, told me he thought he counted eighty-three in attendance.

All in all, I was pretty happy with it. I wasn’t going for as much drama and laughter as earlier talks, but folks seemed to enjoy it, and there was some good Q&A afterwards.

I’m now finishing the last workshop session of the afternoon. Got one more day tomorrow, then it’s back home to Alexandria.




I delivered a talk Monday, am halfway through the automated testing workshops, and will be live streaming another talk Thursday at noon.

- Chattanooga
Tags: Federal government, Google, Test Mercenaries, Testing Grouplet, Testing on the Toilet
Discuss: Discuss "Live from Chattanooga" on Google+

It’s been a busy week, but so worth it. The drive down through the Shenandoah and the Tennessee Valley this past weekend was picture-perfect and delightfully uneventful traffic-wise. Chattanooga is a charming, highly walkable little town, with a lot going on, especially in the tech realm. Meeting folks from the Tennessee Valley Authority and other local companies enrolled in my Unit testing in Node.js workshop at The Company Lab has left me impressed with the range of talent and the sense of local community.

On Monday, I delivered The Convergence of Wills (abridged) to a packed room at the TVA, followed by a lively question and answer session. Tuesday I began leading three classes’ worth of my four-day automated testing workshop. I’m definitely learning a lot about how I might improve the presentation, especially after realizing that many folks in the workshop have lots of frontend JavaScript experience and some functional testing experience, and work primarily in a Windows environment. They know a lot more than I do about frontend frameworks and tools, but most of the principles and techniques involved in unit testing and coding for testability appear new to many. It’s nice getting pushed out of my comfort zone a little, and watching a roomful of people similarly getting pushed.

I’m also realizing that going through every line of the tutorial in detail could take a month worth of workshop sessions. Despite it containing only 600 lines of code and 1200 lines of test, there’s a lot of depth and breadth to cover. As a result, I’m quickly skipping over some sections and giving everyone the liberty to focus on the parts in which they’re most interested. I’m hoping folks get something new out of the experience that they can use, even if they don’t get everything out of it.

On Thursday at noon Eastern Daylight Time, in between workshop sessions, I’m delivering a new talk called "Making the Right Thing the Easy Thing" at the Chadevs Lunch Meetup. The talk will be live streamed via the Chadevs YouTube stream, and will be archived via the Chadevs YouTube channel. It’s going to have a degree of overlap with my other talks, of course, but I’m going to focus mainly on the role of documentation and in-house training in producing culture change.




Links to the video and slides of my "The Convergence of Wills (abridged)" talk, as well as an extra surprise.

- Alexandria
Tags: Federal government, Google, music, Test Mercenaries, Testing Grouplet, Testing on the Toilet
Discuss: Discuss "DevOpsDays DC recap" on Google+

Here is the LiveStream of my "The Convergence of Wills (abridged)" talk at DevOpsDays DC 2016 125723932, starting when Nathen Harvey begins to introduce me at 7:41. (Originally it was 47:20, but it seems they’ve gotten around to editing out the first forty minutes of dead air time). And here are the "The Convergence of Wills (abridged)" slides.

The rest of the keynote and ignite talks are accessible via the DevOpsDC 2016 site. All in all, I had a lot of fun, got a lot of positive feedback on my talk, and met lots of other Instigators that I hope to cause trouble with in the near future. Highly, highly recommended! There’s going to be a DevOpsDays Baltimore in August, if anyone in the area who couldn’t make it wants to try going to that one.

So I was in for another little surprise the evening before my talk… At the happy hour at the Carlyle Club, we had the honor of a rocking performance from Detached Retina. In between sets, my friend Jeff Gallimore introduced me to the band, and, well… I wasn’t exactly Hendrix at Monterey, but man, was it so much fun!

Mike Bland on stage with Detached Retina at the Carlyle Club during the DevOpsDays 2016 happy hour, 1 of 2
Click for a larger image.

Mike Bland on stage with Detached Retina at the Carlyle Club during the DevOpsDays 2016 happy hour, 2 of 2
Click for a larger image.