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Designing Better Software: 5 Rules to Follow

I began my career designing software at Microsoft. Back then, our products typically involved a three-year development cycle  – a deadline unheard of in today’s software R&D space. Back then, the long development period meant there was no real sense of urgency involved in the process. We all had three years to defend our designs...

One Small Panel, Four Critical Ideas

I was in New York last week for the SABEW Fall Conference. Like most software guys, I had no idea that there was a Society of American Business Editors and Writers. However I do know a member of the club, technology journalist Jonathan Blum. We share a common interest in online software tools and we’ve had...

The 5 Laws of Social Project Management

In his new best-seller, Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, author Daniel Pink teaches us that everything we think we know about what motivates us is wrong. He makes his case for business and education, but it’s clear that his ideas are a great fit for life in project-based organizations. Pink describes a core...

Top 5 Word-of-Mouth Marketing Tips

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of speaking on the “Power to the People” panel at the Northwest Entrepreneur Network’s Entrepreneur University event. Sitting next to me on the panel were Derek Johnson of Tatango and Andy Boyer of Spring Creek Group. The conversation covered many  of the facets of word-of-mouth marketing, but we spent lots of time talking about Twitter and...

Holiday favorites, the simpler the better

The holidays are meant to be warm times and a time to be close to the ones you love but so often circumstances conspire to interfere with that. This year is especially interesting as we are all more introspective about over spending and what is really important. Modest gift giving is part of my family...

Blurb – hardcopy done right

It’s Friday night so no work stuff in this post. I want to share the word on one of my favorite tools, Blurb.com. This online service lets you make your own bookstore quality books. It has a downloadable layout tool that uploads your design and content and bada bing, 7-10 days later real books shows up...

Producing Camtasia Videos for the Web

I’ve gotten a couple of questions about how I produce the videos for the LiquidPlanner tutorials so I thought I’d take a minute to blog the notes that I passed on to Kevin Merritt (founder of Blist). I use Camtasia Studio 5 from TechSmith. The folks at TechSmith produce great tools. Just like SnagIt, I’ve really got nothing but good...

Google SketchUp, my newest planning tool

I rarely pass up a chance to play with a new software tool, but with all the work on LiquidPlanner I’ve not had that much time for this interest. Fortunately a project found me. In this case, planning for a kids bedroom remodel. Finally I had an excuse to stay up to 3:00 in the...

Software’s Classic Mistakes gets updated

Steve McConnell, author of Rapid Development and other great books on software engineering, has updated his list of software’s classic mistakes. If you follow the link to the Construx site, Steve has a summary and links to more resources, but you’ll need to register for the extra stuff. Looking at the list, we find some old favorites at...

How hard can it be?

If you build software for a living, you surely have eaten these words at least once. My last major utterance was about two years ago when I said to Jason and Bruce, “How hard can it be to build a project management tool that doesn’t suck?”. I said it about the time we had just...

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