Looking back at my earlier reports I realise that I have been a little cagey about my Rapid Application Development (RAD) initiative. Inspired by a Dynamic Systems Development Methodology (DSDM) seminar, I had hoped to spread the RAD philosophy throughout BritBreak's IT development. Surprisingly, I was even supported by DP manager Arnold Potter, who allocated the recently disbanded Advanced Technology Group (ATG) to me as seedcorn.
I realise now that Potter's actions were not altruistic. The two best technical people from the ATG left to join US software houses within a few weeks. The three brilliant communicators and 'make it happen' wizards were snapped up by other parts of Potter's empire by the end of the month.
I was left with the programming equivalent of that nasty biscuit always left on the plate at the end of a meeting. Linda Flock - union rep, luddite and career bureaucrat. I am the first to applaud attention to detail in time recording and project tracking, but Linda takes everything to a bizarre extreme. I have seen her spend a whole afternoon establishing why a plastic flowcharting stencil (last used in 1968) had disappeared from the stationery cupboard. Even the later discovery of the offending article propping up the short leg of Linda's desk did not get her to appreciate how much productive time she had wasted in the pursuit of something of negligible value.
I caught Mark Diamond, one of the whizzkids off for a life of excess in Seattle, at his leaving do, while everyone else was distracted by the Grace Hoppergram. Diamond was all too happy to explain how Linda got into the ATG. "But she's technically incompetent, a time waster and a stickler for mindless detail," I protested when Diamond said that she was their unanimous choice. Diamond explained. It seems that the rest of the DP department hated the ATG because they understood new technology and actually dared to have fun. Realising they were only a small bunch, the DP hierarchy had tried to tie them up with an ever increasing burden of meetings and committees. Linda was taken on to counter this. She made no contribution to the ATG, had a very limited idea of what they were doing ("the more limited the better", said Diamond), and was left to keep the outside world at bay while the rest of the team got on with the real work. And she was my RAD seedcorn. I decided that RAD would have to wait a while and reluctantly let Linda go to join the BritBreak purchasing department. God help the suppliers.
The IT security team have recovered from their post-holiday flu, but the inevitable backlog of security issues has once more postponed my attempt to open the BritBreak Web page to the world. I have, however, instituted a security review with the IT Steering Board. At the very least it might inspire a little cooperation.
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Trump proposes a $1.3bn fine and a round of firings to un-bork ZTE
Findings could mean new optical frequencies to transmit more data along optical cables