The other day, a client called me about the following issue: a university with about 30,000 students wanted to put a course enrollment application online. By putting this application online, students would be able to enroll in courses remotely. Because the university starts enrollment for these courses every semester, the expectation is that this application will suffer peak loads. The university believes that 700 users will use the application at the same time. Therefore, the client sets a performance requirement of 700 users. This is just one... [More]
The intent of this post is to provide an insight into the world of the systems engineer that is used to working on large embedded projects. Meaning engineers that design and develop products that fly, move on tracks or wheels and float, or in some cases submerge. It is a summary of a webinar I gave in February that has since been transcribed and turned into a white paper
What is it?
Systems engineering spans all the disciplines involved in developing a product. It provides the means to specify the... [More]
In my last blog post , I shared the 5 best practices my teams have learned during our own DevOps Journey:
1. Expand agile practices beyond development and test to include client, business stakeholders, and operations to breakdown silos and improve outcomes.
2. Shift Left with continuous testing using automation and virtualization to eliminate long back-end test cycles and increase quality.
3. Build a delivery pipeline leveraging tools-as-a-service that enables developers to commit... [More]
If you don’t have the right tools for quality management in place when you are working on a project, you could end up facing some tough challenges.
About four or five years ago, I worked for a defense company in Turkey where I was responsible for configuration management and IBM Rational tools maintenance activities for the IBM Rational DOORS , Rational ClearCase , Rational Rhapsody and Rational Publishing Engine (RPE) products. One day, our test team started to complain because they were having some... [More]
I recently gave a presentation titled “Essentials of Rational Engineering Lifecycle Manager ”. During the talk, my co-presenter (the wizard) Andy Lapping mentioned that a better title for Rational Engineering Lifecycle Manager would be Rational Information Lifecycle Manager since the tool is not only for engineers but anyone who wants an easily consumable view of their linked information. The key benefit of the tool is that it indexes disparate data that is spread around the company so that you can easily visualize,... [More]
Built in the mid to late 90’s, the Mars Climate Orbiter was fitted with the most advanced technology of its time, and it featured dual redundant systems and triple redundant software copies! What could possibly go wrong?
It launched in December 1998 - everything was going according to plan. By September 1999, it approached Mars and attempted to go into orbit. Then - poof - it went out of radio contact! Two days later, it was officially declared "lost". The probe ventured too close to Mars, plummeted into its... [More]
Complexity is the biggest challenge in delivering innovative products, systems and applications today. Engineers rely on a wide variety of tools in their daily jobs to deal with this complexity. A couple of these tools are Mathworks Simulink , a very popular tool used to create models of control systems or plants, and IBM Rational Rhapsody , which is used to specify the architecture, design and functionality of these systems. Both of these tools help you to manage complexity by providing a development environment where you can... [More]
The game is changing. The medical device industry is experiencing game changing evolutions of technology that greatly impact the way we design, build and interact with medical devices and how we manage our health. Most of this is due to the rise of technology made for, and popular in, other industries.
I remember my first “car phone” which was bigger than my dog and had to be carried around in its own bag and often didn’t work – but it made me feel pretty... [More]
The connected vehicle is transformative. It changes the way we do engineering, the way we do business and how and where we are connected.
Connected to what?
Today when we talk about connected vehicles, what we are talking about is the instrumentation and communication of vehicles to external systems. This could be your mobile device, smartphone or tablet, another vehicle (V2V) or a component of an intelligent transportation system (V2I). This inter-connectivity is commonly referred to as vehicle to everything or... [More]
If you are using IBM Tivoli Composite Application Manager for Transactions (ITCAM fT) to monitor your applications, you have a duty to see if your client's application is available. How do you know if the client's application is online?
A tool that accesses it automatically would make monitoring simpler. In other words, you need a way to access the application around the clock, and you can do this by integrating ITCAM fT with a robotic monitor . But which Rational testing tool is... [More]
Since World Cup fever currently has the world in a frenzy – particularly the Netherlands, where I am writing this from just after their 5-1 victory against Spain – I thought it would be good to share a footballing story from about 4 years ago!
Note that as a Brit I shall be steadfastly refusing to talk about Soccer!
Take a stroll down memory lane, to South Africa, with the dulcet tones of the Vuvuzela giving every team a great excuse for playing badly, and also giving the worlds media something... [More]
If the tool you’re using does not do what you need it to do in the way you were expecting, is the tool bad? Should it be consigned to a shelf to gather dust?
Having worked with software tools for a number of years, I understand that they all have their own personalities and quirks. It is always important for users to be formally trained in the use of the tools they use within their organization; however, in today's business climate not everyone has that luxury.
In this new blog series, I will look... [More]
If you are not familiar with the subject of professional licensing for software engineers, you can read a good synopsis here . Surprisingly (to me), the concept of regulating the practice of software engineering in situations where public safety is involved has been met with significant resistance and controversy. I believe this is an important issue, and it is becoming more important because the use of software-driven, safety-critical systems is drastically increasing.
My own experience
Before I get into specific... [More]
IBM Rational's Enterprise DevOps Transformational Journey
Over the last 10 years as an IBM executive, I have been leading large development organizations in the adoption of lean, agile and DevOps practices. These development organizations have spanned multiple geographies, technologies, cultural backgrounds and skill sets. Through these experiences, I have learned a lot. Mostly that these transformations are hard, take much longer than you want in a large organization, and that it is important to learn from others on similar journeys. In... [More]
In meetings with clients recently, I have noticed that more and more are showing an interest in program management. Over the last few months, I have been working with one specific client on their program management using IBM Rational Focal Point .
Program management is an interesting discipline because there are many differing views on what a program really is—whether it is something different from a project, simply a super project or a collection of projects. However, generally, when a client asks for... [More]