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Fortnight note 13/07/2020 & 20/07/2020

Last updated 31 July 2020

2 weeks worth of notes and I’m still late with them. That sums up the last fortnight. It has been incredibly busy, both at home and at work.

A highlight was seeing my parents for the first time since Christmas. Of course socially distanced, on the common in Streatham. We had an interesting exchange that highlighted our different approaches to technology; I work out what I can do by trying things, pressing buttons and attempting gestures, then eventually googling it. They won’t attempt anything unless they know exactly what to do. Is it down to familiarity with tech? A lack of fear about breaking things? Something else?

Still waiting for Apple to announce a new iMac. And I had to use illustrator a lot in the last 2 weeks which really highlighted the issue with my current machine.

What I’ve read

  • Cool use of data by a Local Council. Using Strava cycle data to prioritise road improvements.
  • Russian hacking and interference. Hacking into drug firms and research groups seems low.
  • Using the spotlight the disruption caused by the covid crisis has shone a light on the need for localism (you need stuff in your neighbourhood) to increase robustness of the areas we live in. It is an opportunity to “decentralisation urban life”, bringing activities to the people instead of people to the activites. Idea of 15 minute cities (everything you need is within a 15 min walk or cycle area) has been adopted by many cities around the world (The C40?). It’ll be interesting to see what they do, their different approaches to it and ultimately the cities they create. In the words of Bosacker “it’s a real opportunity.”
  • I agree with a lot of what Scott Smith says about the importance of “unsexy work”. Agree with the sentiment that an issue you can encounter with agile is a reluctance to document stuff. Documenting stuff is important but the difficult thing is finding the right balance! People come and go so you need to keep the knowledge. And we also we forgot things, that’s normal! Documenting stuff is even more important whilst working remotely or, as the post mentions, if teams having different working patterns. I’ve found it difficult in the past, and still do, because sometimes it feels like taking the time to document things and make hard artefacts is taking you away from work that makes it in front of the end user. If you are faced with this dilemma you should remember that the time and effort it takes to re-cover old ground or explain things over and over again soon adds up and is actually stopping you progressing as a team. And, therefore, negatively impacts the end user. A on going consideration: what’s the smallest amount of documentation you can to do for the most impact.
  • Reminded of this post by Russell Davies that explores some of the differences between what we call our users/customers/consumers. User for things someone has to use, e.g. a government service. And maybe customer when there is an element of winning someone’s custom.
  • In Local Authority news, Rotherham have managed to save £25,000 a year by planting wild flowers on road verges

What I’ve built

  • there must be something but I didn’t fill this in on time.

What I’ve learnt

Favourite thing of the week

Favourite meal

  • I cooked Spaghetti all’amatriciana which I saw on Saturday kitchen one week. It was great. And now I know what the super fatty meat you see in deli’s is for.
Tags
weeknote / busy / aoc