Delivering a project and presenting to a multi-level audience

 

Encoding_communication

Figure 1: “Encoding communication” by Luis Javier Rodriguez Lopez

01-1-to-many

Figure 2: 01-1-to-many by Maxwell Hoffmann

A presenter deliver information to an audience in a way that the audience understand and make the information personal. In figure 1 The idea of coding a message and having all that information transferred to another and decoded while keeping the intended information intact. To do this a large diverse audience like what I am doing is this blog can be a challenging task. There is the need of the presenter to want to know their audience so they can tune their conversation to maximize the message they want to get across to the audience. In most situation any presenter is only going to know a small portion of the knowledge the audience is going to bring to a presentation. This small amount of information is what the presenter is going to need to feed off of to get the communication flowing. I find with a good presentation it can help move people to accept a delivery of a project, in the paper “Delivering the Project in Technical Consulting” by James L. Hawley and John Frauenhoffer, the authors note at how a good delivery of a project need a team that can do problem solving(p.61). Problem solving is the main function of the team in the project the client has a problem that the team will need to fix. In presenting the presenter has to solve the problem of getting information across the the audience.  In the paper “Using narratives and storytelling to communicate science with nonexpert audiences” by Michael F. Dahlstorm, notes at using a storytelling elements as a way to involve the audience the conversation. I can see myself using some strategy like using metaphors in describing some abstract ideas in computer science to people not well versed in computer science. The one problem I do have to look out for when abstracting information is making sure that information still comes back into one piece to my audience. The Figure 2 show the idea of one to many, which in a sense is what abstracting information, taking a single point and expanding/generalizing the idea.

References

Dahlstrom, M. F. (2014). Using narratives and storytelling to communicate science with nonexpert audiences. Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences Of The United States Of America, 11113614-13620. doi:10.1073/pnas.1320645111

Hawley, J. L., & Frauenhoffer, J. (1996). Delivering the Project in Technical Consulting. Journal Of Architectural Engineering, 2(2), (pp. 55-62)

Hoffmann, M. (2013) 01-1-to-many [Image] Retrieved November 23, 2014 from http://blogs.adobe.com/techcomm/2013/11/guest-blog-from-one-many-single-sourcing-with-robohelp.html

Lopez, L.J.R, Encoding communication [Image] Retrieved November 23, 2014 from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communication#mediaviewer/File:Communication_emisor.jpg

 

Handing off a project to a client; what are the risks and challenges?

Handing over control of a project seems like it might be scary to do when finishing a project for an outside client, as it means that as a developer your product better work as it is intended. This final stage problem, like ease of use and other end user issue have to be taken care of or as a developer you will find yourself with an unhappy customer. How can a developer go about taking care of handing a finished state project off to a client, I will tell you what I have done in handing over a project to a client.

flowchart

Figure 1: The Raw flow of development. By Wesley Eversole

Currently I am handing over a website to a client and a lot of the work the team I am working with has been making sure the client can take care of their website with out needing to go in to the source code. In the paper”Key Factors for Developing a Successful E-commerce Website” by Osama Mohammed Ahmad Rababah and Fawaz Ahmad Masoud, the authors denote the three different areas which are the usability, conceptual reliability and representative reliability. The note that usability is the over all ease of maintaining, navigating adaptability and user friendliness the website offers. These were some of the core ideas we needed to give our website for our client to use. Figure 1 capture a raw essence of what development can be like. There is a loop that a developer must fill to satisfy their customer

When leaving a finished product with a client the developer should put them self in the head space of their client. The developer needs to make sure that they make using their product accessible. In the website I am building we decides on using word press as a launching point since work press has easy to navigate back end. For our client being able to work the website for themselves has been the key development choose we want to work in to the project. There is also the training we need to give our client since we know our client has limit skill in working a website that we have to plan for when handing over the project to them. In this case we have to train the client to be able to log in to the web site and then update pages they need to. The end hope of developing a website like this is to accomplish results like in “Agile for Dummies” written by Scott W. Ambler and Matthew Holitza, Where the IBM team was able increase the presences of the client from around 10 interactions to over 400 for a given project  (p. 58). A level like what is noted in “Agile for Dummies” is the end goal that the team I am apart of would like to accomplish make the client part of our design process. Doing that lets us teach the client so when we leave they will be able to manage their delivered product.

References

Ambler, S. & Holitza, M. (2012). Choosing an Agile Approach. In Agile for Dummies (IBM ed., p. 74). Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons.

Rababah, O. M. A., & Masoud, F. A. (2010). Key factors for developing a successful e-commerce website. Communications of the IBIMA, 2010, 1-9.

What five technical skills are employers seeking? What five soft skills put you on top?

In the past few week I have been doing some research into different career fields. I have been looking in fields like cloud development, computer networking and database management, just to name some fields I have looked into. When looking into each field I look at job requirements that the employers are looking for in new employees. There are two camps of skills every employer has under their skill requirements. The first is technical skills, the main reason the employer is looking to hire new employees. The second camp skills or what most employers call “Soft

Skills” are not written down as concrete visible like the technical skills but soft skills can help differentiate prospective employees that have the same technical skills. So lets take a deeper look into five technical skill Information system employers look for in new recruits and five soft skills that can help career hunters separate from other hunters.

In a study of the requirements from employers in the Information Systems field, written by Charles R. Woratschek and  Terri L. Lenox titled ”Information Systems Entry-Level Job Skills: A Survey Of Employers ”, the authors asked  and looked at past surveys to gather a view of the skill set employers are looking for in new Information System graduates. Woratschek and Lenox  findings were:

  • Programing languages, have the highest value to employers
  • Knowledge of Systems Development Life Cycles
  • Networking Concepts
  • Data Communication
  • Operating systems

Keep in mind that this research is coming from 2002 but the skill set employers in the field researched kept wide areas as any technology field will change quickly but these five skill areas as noted in the study give employees tools to adapt to the changes in the skills listed(p.4 ). When I look at these skills I see how even though back in 2002 cloud computing was still years away these skill would easily help people transition to a cloud platform like AWS or Google’s Cloud.

Woratschek and Lenox  also got a list of soft skills that employers desired all their employees to embody:

  • Professional Ethics
  • Motivation To Work
  • Ability to Learn
  • Attention To Details
  • Time Management

On their listing of soft skills they had listed 20 skill, I have the top 5 but like the technical skills I can see why these would be in the top 5(p.6). Each of the top five would help employees scouted with these skill evolve and keep up with the quickly changing technologies of the field. Changing with a field is not only good for the employee because they can have a job for many years but it also help a company from having to hire new employees with high demand skills. When companies have to look and hire new employees with high demand needs it can cost the company more money/time than having their current employees train up their technical skills.

the paper”Soft Skills and Technical Expertise of Effective Project Managers” written by Sharlett Gillard, talks about the different technical and soft skills a project manager need to be successful according to others research.  Skill like communication were some of the top soft skill required for a project manager to be deemed successful(pp.724-725). In my current project, when I was a sprint leader for the project, I found how important it is to have clear communication. I attempted to make clear communication channels for which the team could communicate like utilizing a Facebook groups posting system. The use of a Facebook groups chat I found useful for centralization of communication which led to a lowering of issues of missing a person in a group email message. Having a clear communication channel did helped reduce possible issues of having a group member misinterpret or miss what I was trying to concave– to the team. The reduction in errors reduced any error extra error fixing time that would have had to been done if that communication was not there.

Getting down technical skills will help anyone pick a field to work in but having the wanted soft skill will help people stick in the job fields they want.

 

Refrences

Gillard, S. (2009). Soft skills and technical expertise of effective project managers. Issues in Informing Science and Information Technology, 6(2009), 723-729.

Woratschek, C. R., & Lenox, T. L. (2002, October). Information systems entry-level job skills: a survey of employers. In Proceedings of the Information Systems Educators Conference, San Antonio TX (Vol. 19).

A Flight Into Cloud Computing

old cloud

My Old View of “The Cloud”

Last week I had the privilege to attend the IT Cloud Computing Conference (IC3). Before I went to the conference I had a vague idea of what the cloud was. I thought when people referenced the cloud they were referencing data or hosting data on servers owned by other companies. Services like iCloud and Google Drive are just some of these cloud storage services running on top of a cloud infrastructure and are just a small subset of the greater cloud computing environment. What I now understand as the “cloud”, is that it can be broken into two grouping of infrastructure: publicly run, owned and use by other entities (Google, Amazon), or privately owned, used and maintained by the ones owning the cloud system. The public sector of cloud computing allows developers to set up virtual system with flexible computing power as a service instead of a physical asset that is owned and must be maintained. The cloud computing market as it is now is trying to develop computing technology as service. The paper “Scientific Cloud Computing: Early Definition and Experience” written by Lizhe Wang and Gregor von Laszewski, observed that cloud computing should be indistinguishable to the user from a hardware environment, accessing the cloud should be location agnostic along with not needing massive local system requirements. In the end the people accessing cloud services should not need to know how the cloud works in order to access anything utilizing cloud computing. The authors lend ideas about how developers working on cloud platforms have computer systems that they no longer need management teams working on a computer system. On cloud systems individual developers can manage large computer system with ease, allowing them to focuses on creating rather than management of a large hardware infrastructure. The article “Business Models in the Service World” written by Christof Weinhardt, Arun Anandasivam, Benjamin Blau, and Jochen Stößer,

High level view of public and private cloud

High level view of public and private cloud

I  find the article digs more in to the business cost of side cloud computing. The authors for this article found the payment plan “pay per use” to be the most cloud computing platforms leaned towards that payment style as makes computing more of a service industry(pp. 40-41). As I am currently a student in college the prospects of having the ability to set up my own web server without having to own hardware running on a cloud service. In certain cloud ecosystems I can pay for what I use, allowing me to experiment on different development platforms, without the heavy cost of failure associated with owning and maintaining my own hardware. When computing is a service if I need more computing power I can simply buy more power and in seconds I have that power which I find beats out physical upgrading which takes time. In closing I just wanted to get out there a very high overview of cloud computing as a platform. I plan to explore this topic in greater detail as way to help myself and other understand this field.

References

Wang, L., & Von Laszewski, G. (2008). Scientific Cloud Computing: Early Definition and Experience. 1-18. Retrieved November 2, 2014, from http://cyberaide.googlecode.com/svn/trunk/papers/08-cloud/vonLaszewski-08-cloud.pdf

Weinhardt, C., Anandasivam, A., Blau, B., & Stößer, J. (2009). Business Models in the Service World. IT Pro, 36-41. Retrieved November 3, 2014, from

http://www.im.uni-karlsruhe.de/Upload/Publications/2f5d87da-1af5-4d44-b422-9b7e5802b5a5.pdf