Saturday, December 07, 2019

2019-12-07 Saturday - Business Analysis/Analyst Resources

A former colleague recently asked for some book suggestions for his new role as a Business Analyst.

I've published a file ( in my Lab.Architecture repository on Github

2019-12-07 Saturday - EA Tooling Thoughts

James McGovern asked this question on LinkedIn:

"Your CIO received an email communication stating that EnterpriseArchitecture using Excel, Visio and Powerpoint is a recipe for ZERO Business Value. She wants to know whether you agree? What do you tell her?"

My response to this thread
1) An EA tool with a centralized repository supports the root definition of elements/components - and reuse. 

2) There are EA tools that are HORRIFICALLY BAD - and have INSANE pricing models (i.e. named users, not floating licenses) 

3) A good EA tool should support exporting/publishing the repository to HTML - so that it can be made widely available - without incurring exorbitant costs. 

4) Creating/Defining the same elements - again, and again, and again - in each and every Excel, Word, Visio, PowerPoint document is MADNESS. 

5) Without a repository-based approach, for EA Tooling: There is no reuse; no ability to perform a query and determine dependency impact analysis - across all of those scattered documents that may be on a server, in someone' email inbox, etc; there is no definitive source-of-truth. 

6) Maintaining accurate information in an EA Tool is a Sisyphean task that most organizations will choose to abandon and not support over a long enough time period. 

7) There is no silver bullet.
8) Life is pain.

Friday, November 29, 2019

2019-11-29 Friday - Free DL Book: Deep Learning with PyTorch

MEAP book on Manning:
"Every other day we hear about new ways to put deep learning to good use: improved medical imaging, accurate credit card fraud detection, long range weather forecasting, and more. PyTorch puts these superpowers in your hands, providing a comfortable Python experience that gets you started quickly and then grows with you as you—and your deep learning skills—become more sophisticated. Deep Learning with PyTorch will make that journey engaging and fun.

2019-11-29 Friday - Book Preview: Architecting Cloud Native .NET Applications for Azure, by Microsoft
"This article provides early content from a book that is currently under construction"

Thursday, November 28, 2019

2019-11-28 Thursday - Researching Cilium

(a placeholder posting for my notes, while researching Cilium)

Cilium: API-aware Networking and Security
"Cilium is open source software for transparently securing the network connectivity between application services deployed using Linux container management platforms like Docker and Kubernetes."
"At the foundation of Cilium is a new Linux kernel technology called BPF, which enables the dynamic insertion of powerful security visibility and control logic within Linux itself. Because BPF runs inside the Linux kernel, Cilium security policies can be applied and updated without any changes to the application code or container configuration."
"The Cilium agent (cilium-agent) runs on each Linux container host. At a high-level, the agent accepts configuration that describes service-level network security and visibility policies. It then listens to events in the container runtime to learn when containers are started or stopped, and it creates custom BPF programs which the Linux kernel uses to control all network access in / out of those containers."
"Berkeley Packet Filter (BPF) is a Linux kernel bytecode interpreter originally introduced to filter network packets, e.g. tcpdump and socket filters. It has since been extended with additional data structures such as hashtable and arrays as well as additional actions to support packet mangling, forwarding, encapsulation, etc. An in-kernel verifier ensures that BPF programs are safe to run and a JIT compiler converts the bytecode to CPU architecture specific instructions for native execution efficiency. "
"Cilium leverages BPF to perform core datapath filtering, mangling, monitoring and redirection, and requires BPF capabilities that are in any Linux kernel version 4.8.0 or newer."
"This document describes the Cilium architecture. It focuses on documenting the BPF datapath hooks to implement the Cilium datapath, how the Cilium datapath integrates with the container orchestration layer, and the objects shared between the layers e.g. the BPF datapath and Cilium agent."
"BPF is a highly flexible and efficient virtual machine-like construct in the Linux kernel allowing to execute bytecode at various hook points in a safe manner. It is used in a number of Linux kernel subsystems, most prominently networking, tracing and security (e.g. sandboxing)."

Additional BPF Background Reading:

Sunday, November 17, 2019

2019-11-17 Sunday - Quantum Factorization Papers

This is a placeholder blog post - as part of a deep-dive into Quantum Computing that I'm doing.

Background reading:

Some papers in my reading queue:

Quantum-Kit: Simulating Shor's Factorization of 24-Bit Number on Desktop

How to factor 2048 bit RSA integers in 8 hours using 20 million noisy qubits

Factoring semi-primes with (quantum) SAT-solvers

Exact search algorithm to factorize large biprimes and a triprime on IBM quantum computer

Summatory function of the number of prime factors

On speeding up factoring with quantum SAT solvers

Sunday, November 10, 2019

2019-11-10 Sunday - Eclipse 4.13 2019-09 and JDK 13.0.1

Today I'm experimenting with the latest releases of Eclipse (4.13, 2019-09) and JDK 13.0.1

Eclipse 4.13, 2019-09

JDK 13:

Kotlin Plugin:

2019-11-15 Friday Update:

Java on Visual Studio Code November Update

Friday, November 08, 2019

2019-11-08 Friday - Technical Reviewer for Learn Quantum Computing with Python and Q#

With gratitude to the editorial team, I've been added as one of the Technical Reviewers for a new early-access Manning Publications book,

Learn Quantum Computing with Python and Q#

Thursday, October 31, 2019

2019-10-31 Thursday - "Rabid Agile" (tm)

I had an opportunity to cite this today - in a client meeting, while discussing how I've defined proponents of "Rabid Agile" (tm) - that promote the idea that there is no need to document the design of the software to be built (or, draw diagrams) - and who claim the source code is the design. 

Meeks Software Architecture Conjecture #1:
"The source code may (or may not) be a full implementation of the desired capability needed by the business - but is more likely just an approximation (constrained by permitted time, allocated budget, and available skills/talent of the team involved). Therefore it should not be confused with the actual or desired (or envisioned) design - that may require multiple years to achieve - of which the current source code may only reflect a partial (and incomplete, or inaccurate) representation."


Sunday, October 20, 2019

2019-10-20 Sunday - Growing a Professional Network

In late March, I embarked on a focused effort to expand my professional network. I started with ~500 connections - pruned that down to ~475, and began working on building new branches, expanding my network with a new tapestry of far-flung roots.

Today marks a milestone (after some further pruning) > 2,000 - high quality connections - a carefully curated global network of: Decision makers, leaders, innovators, scientists, scholars, researchers, amazing engineers and technologists, creators, makers, teachers, communicators, writers, speakers, executives.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

2019-10-19 Saturday - USB 3.0 KVM Switcher

I'm looking to add a bit of kit to my traveling office setup - a solution to allow me to easily switch using my Logitech MK540 wireless keyboard and mouse - between two computers.

This is the product I've selected to order...

ULBRE Soho KVM Switch 4 Port USB 3.0 Sharing Box Selector, 4Port Peripheral Switcher KM Adapter KVM Console Hub for Office PC Printer Mouse Keyboard
    • Amazon'sChoice
    • 116 reviews  
    • Note this statement in the product description: "2.4Ghz wireless devices, such as wifi, wireless keyboard and mouse adapters, may not work stably in close proximity to USB 3.0 devices or hubs. Try using the host port or a USB 2.0 connection."

Other alternatives I considered:

USB 3.0 Switch Selector,ABLEWE KVM Switcher Adapter 4 Port USB Peripheral Switcher Box Hub for Mouse, Keyboard, Scanner, Printer, PCs with One-Button Switch and 2 Pack USB Cable, by ABLEWE

Rocketek USB Switch, USB 3.0 Sharing Switch for 2 Computers Sharing 4 USB 3.0 Ports, KVM Switches for PCs with One-Button Swapping, High Data Transfer Speed & 2 Pack USB Cable 

USB3.0 Switch Selector, 2 Computers 6-Port USB 3.0 Peripheral Sharing Switch Hub Adapter for Keyboard, Mouse, U-disk, Printer, KVM One-Second Switcher USB3.0, Compatible with Mac / Windows / Linux

USB 3.0 Switch Selector, 2 Computer Sharing 4 USB Devices, KVM Switcher Box for Mouse Keyboard Scanner Printer PC, with One Button Swapping and USB3.0 Cable, by Rybozen

USB3.0 Manual Sharing Switch for USB Device USBHUB Printer Scanner Two Computers (A/B Switch) by Miraview Netmate

Sunday, October 13, 2019

2019-10-13 Sunday - Book Review - SharePoint Online from Scratch

My Amazon Review:
When I started my search for a useful text to accelerate my learning curve of SharePoint Online, I did an exhaustive examination of the Table of Contents of almost every recently published SharePoint book available on Amazon.

Peter's organization of the information in his book was exceptionally notable - and was my first purchase. My intuition was correct - and I have not been disappointed. His writing is concise - and provides immediate actionable value.

Later, I found that Peter has also provided excellent supplemental information on his web site - and his YouTube channel videos are very helpful as well.

A github repository I've started to organize my lessons learned - as I find other useful resources, books, videos, presentations, tips, and tricks:

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

2019-10-08 Tuesday - Get Your Mug: Got Budget Sparky?

Set this beautiful mug on your desk - and visitors will you know you are an experienced IT professional!

An excellent addition to any professional's toolkit!

No more wasted cycles researching "Blue Sky" initiatives - that fail to launch,

Buy your mug here:

Thursday, September 26, 2019

2019-09-25 Wednesday - InsureTech Connect 2019 - Day #3

Day #3 of InsureTech Connect 2019, Las Vegas, NV

[I'm writing this entry on Thursday morning, back aboard my sailboat, on the Pacific Ocean - having departed Las Vegas Wednesday afternoon] 

(I'm still working on writing-up some pieces for the interview noted below - this posting will continue to be updated with notes from my conversations with attendees and company representatives that I met at their respective booths...)

  • Interview session with Sid Wadhwa, Managing Partner and Co-founder at NV Insurance Group LLC
    • "Coming Soon... Tomorrow's Digital MGA today"
  • Other members of NV Insurance Group LLC that were present:
    • Hari Kanangi, Managing Partner and Co-founder at NV Insurance Group LLC
    • Anupam Mittra, Managing Partner and Co-founder at NV Insurance Group LLC
    • Shreya Wadha, Marketing and Development
  • The company is self-funded.
  • Sid stressed that his company is still in stealth mode - and thus was not able to share specific details (yet).  I look forward to some follow-up conversations with Sid and his team - and may have some additional details to share over the next 6-18 months, as they continue to plan, elaborate, and execute. 


I spent the majority of the morning in the Exhibition Hall - having many, many interesting conversations with company representatives in their respective vendor booths - as well as the serendipitous meetings that happened in the break areas - and around the coffee service tables.

(many additional notes from vendor booth visits to be added here, today...)

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Ideas and Suggestions for InsureTech Connect 2020
  • On Tuesday evening, "Birds of a Feather" type open discussion topic sessions could be scheduled to allow those who have a shared specific interest/focus to meet, network, and share their experiences/solutions. A few examples of possible topic sessions to suggest, with an emphasis on topics of particular interest to Information Technology attendees:
    • Artificial Intelligence
    • Machine Learning
    • Data Analytics
    • Open Source Software
    • Cloud Computing
    • IoT
  • Another possible idea for Tuesday evening, "5 Minute Lightning Talks" - is an idea from the world of information technology conferences - that I think might very well resonate with many of the attendees. Conceptually, you could have a a 2-hour block of time (say 7-9pm), with 5 minutes blocks available for anyone to sign-up to give a talk - with different tracks dedicated to different rooms (e.g. agency management, policy administration, distribution, compliance, governance, privacy, security, cloud computing, open source software, machine learning, IoT, etc.)
  • To simplify the Registration process, allow attendees to print their passes prior to arriving - and simply hang Lanyards with ID Badge Holders all along the walls of the registration area. 
    • Although I would be tempted to consider suggesting a mobile app for the Conference ID - dead mobile phone batteries would generate more disruption to traffic flow (getting into sessions) than the simple process of attendee-printed badges.
    • A tip of the hat to Joseph Keller for the idea of pre-staging the lanyards along the walls.
  • One problem with the very, very long  registration line this year was that no one seemed to be aware that there were registration queues on more than one side of the registration kiosk.  Everyone, unaware, was in line to the first person at the registration kiosk - all they had to do was peel off and begin joining the much shorter queues going all the way around to the far side of the kiosk.
  • Perhaps breaking the registration kiosk up into multiple locations, with designated last name ranges (A-D, E-G, etc.) would be helpful. 
  • Automate the networking app - so that when one person (a) expresses an interest in connecting - and the other person (b) responds - an automatic invitation to connect is initiated via a LinkedIn API request, from (a) to (b).

General Concluding Thoughts on InsureTech Connect 2019
  • Consistently, the response from the dozens of attendees that I asked - everyone reported a very positive conference experience. 
  • Vendors consistently commented that the traffic to their booths was better than they had hoped - and for those booth representatives who had attended previous ITC conferences in years past - they consistently reported that this year was even better than last year.
  • The conference is an exceptional networking event for insurance professionals.  I heard one estimate that this year's conference may have had as many as ~7,500 attendees (the reported number for the 2018 event was ~6,000)
  • The MGM Grand Conference Center was an excellent choice of venue for this event. The exhibition hall is enormous - and was well laid out. 
  • The number of vendors with booths in the exhibition hall was almost overwhelming. Several times, my poor aching feet gave out long before my mental curiosity was satisfied. 
  • Although I didn't have an opportunity to try the breakfasts that were served - the lunches were excellent. 
  • Regrettably, I wasn't able to stay for "The Official After Party Featuring Billy Idol"

Source: Fedex

Since all of the rooms in the MGM Grand were sold out by the time my travel plans were ready to be finalized - I opted to go ultra-spartan for this trip. Convenience was my primary decision criteria. For the very frugal (and brave of heart), note that I was able to book four nights at the Motel 6 across the street from the convention center - for $266. This offered the shortest walking distance to the conference.


Tuesday, September 24, 2019

2019-09-24 Tuesday - InsureTech Connect 2019 - Day #2

Day #2 - of InsureTech Connect 2019, Las Vegas, NV
(I'm still working on writing-up some pieces for the interviews noted below - this posting will continue to be updated...)

Today has been a mix of 1:1 interviews with vendors - and wandering through the exhibition hall - and allowing serendipity to guide me in discovering interesting vendor conversations.




  • Exhibit Hall Conversations...



  • Interview with Michael F. Wilson Head of Product Marketing, Insurance, Cognizant   


While in Las Vegas, a former colleague happened to also be attending a separate conference - and we arranged to meet for dinner - his company is focused on privacy compliance - which may be of particular interest to insurance technology executives: 

Press Release News Items:

Some photos from today:

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

2019-09-23 Monday - InsureTech Connect 2019 - Day #1

Day #1 - of InsureTech Connect 2019, Las Vegas, NV

(I'm still working on writing-up some pieces for the interviews with Gary and Bassam below - this posting will continue to be updated...)

I arrived late yesterday afternoon (Sunday) in Las Vegas. Checked into my hotel, near the MGM Grand - and walked over this morning for a 9am interview with Gary Hoberman, Founder and CEO of Unqork.

[Listening to Gary expound on his company's vision and mission was one of the most inspiring experiences I've had - not only while attending InsureTech Connect 2019 - but, probably in the last year.]

Unqork was founded in 2016 - and offers a cloud-based, no-code solution, with a market focus on Insurance, Financial Services, and Real Estate. A few interesting notes from my background research and  interview with Gary:

  • Their Glassdoor employee reviews are quite interesting (14 reviews, 100% Recommend to a friend, and 100% Approve of CEO)
  • Goldman Sachs is both a customer - and a lead investor (April 2019, $22M series A round)
  • They have about 150 employees
  • Interestingly, their software development is done entirely in-house, in New York. 
  • Given their  stated position on not participating in RFPs (see their FAQ), I had assumed that they might have a market focus on the lower end of a target revenue size for their prospective clients - however, Gary surprised me with a few interesting facts:
    • Their first customer writes over $48B in annual premiums
    • None of their insurance customers write less than $1B in annual premiums.
  • Gary mentioned that his view is that "...the idea of a policy admin system is flawed".  This requires a bit more explanation - which I will expand on in the next day or so - but is it a teaser for you - of the radical and disruptive thinking that is embedded in the DNA of Unqork's approach to solving the historical problems/costs/challenges/delays in building information systems for the insurance industry.
  • An astounding claim: They were able to port the PCE application for a client in Bogota, Columbia (22 products & riders) in 7 weeks.
I'll have more information to share from my interview with Gary - as well as my deeper dive technical discussion with Unqork's CTO, Bassam Chaptini.A quick summary of their technology stack:
  • Cloud deployment  is supported on Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, and Amazon (AWS)
  • The application is primarily written in JavaScript - for both the front-end, and back-end.
  • JSON is heavily used in the application architecture - and is stored in MongoDB. 

I attended the conference as an official representative of the media contingent:

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

The line to get to the registration desk was quite long...this process might benefit from an application of some technology.  :)

Note: This was the view, after working our way ~50% through the queue... 

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

While in line, I had the great pleasure of meeting Joseph Keller, Associate Counsel, Westmont Associates, Inc.  I appear to have misplaced the business card of one of Joseph's associates that I also met (my apologies) - I will update this with her information as soon as I can find it.  Later, I also had the chance to meet Logan Marro, Vice President.
"Westmont brings an unparalleled team of seasoned professionals, including contract/compliance specialists, attorneys, claims experts, accountants and actuaries. Our senior staff possesses insurance company experience and also includes former regulators. The principals on our staff have been senior executives at insurance companies throughout the U.S. We understand your internal issues and goals and we appreciate how regulatory decisions will impact the rest of your corporation."
Services offered by Westmont Associates, include Corporate Producer Licensing/Individual Producer Licensing.

Folks were still arriving throughout the day...

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks


  • I was fortunate to have the chance to catch-up with Vishal Garg, Sr. Enterprise Architect Data, Digital and Innovation at Farmers Insurance, over dinner. Vishal is a friend, and former colleague. 
Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

  • Cambridge Mobile Telematics hosted an event at the MGM Grand's Topgolf, with professional golfers David Feherty and John Daly
  • One of the best sponsored events I've ever attended at a conference. Great venue, FANTASIC food served. 
  • Reminder to self: I need to follow-up with CMT - and coordinate some time to interview some of their executive leadership team. 
Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Photo by Kelvin D. Meeks

Friday, September 20, 2019

InsureTech Connect 2019, Las Vegas

Source: ITC 2019 Brochure

I will be in Las Vegas, September 23-25, 2019 - for the InsureTech Connect 2019 Conference.

I'm attending as a member of the Media (as a freelance journalist) - with gratitude to the InsureTech Connect organizers who have graciously agreed to provide me with a Media Pass. 

My writing focus will be on three areas:
  1. Interesting new and innovative technologies showcased by start-ups (with a particular interest in any Open Source contributions);
  2. Examples of adoption of artificial intelligence, machine learning, deep learning, robotics - by larger enterprises (success - as well as lessons learned/failures);
  3. Profile pieces on interesting start-up/founder stories.

I'll be posting articles to this blog, as well as to the following LinkedIn insurance-related groups:

Additionally, I will be writing news articles for submission (on speculation) to a number of other publications, such as:
  • Forbes 
  • CIO
    • This may be a bit more of a challenge, as I just learned "does not publish contributed articles" - but, I have contacted Amy Bennett, Executive Editor.
  • ...and others, based on the particular topic/slant  (e.g. Open Source, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Deep Learning, Robotics, etc.)

Monday, September 09, 2019

2019-09-09 Monday - Book: The Data-Centric Revolution: Restoring Sanity to Enterprise Information Systems

Dave McComb, President of Semantic Arts, has very graciously provided me with a copy of his latest book to review: "The Data-Centric Revolution: Restoring Sanity to Enterprise Information Systems".

I've previously worked with Dave in the past, on a mutual client's Enterprise Architecture initiative. I have a high regard for Dave's thought leadership - and am looking forward to diving into his book. I will post a follow-up with a link to my review, in a week or so.

Tuesday, September 03, 2019

2019-09-03 Tuesday - Notes on Learning WebAssembly

I've setup a new github repository to organize my notes on learning more about WebAssembly:

Some of the best talks I've found on YouTube about WebAssembly, are by Lin Clark:

2019-09-02 Monday - Future Research Project: ML Applied to Enterprise Architecture Diagrams

After reading the two research papers below, I have some thoughts on a possible future ML research problem I would like to explore.

This posting is a placeholder for me to organize notes, thoughts, and gather additional background reading material.

Problem Space/Conditions/Assumptions:

  1. For a given organization, their collection(s) of Enterprise Architecture diagram images are created with a variety of non-homogeneous tools/icons - over time, by different authors (internally, and externally) - resulting in different file formats being used (e.g. Google Diagrams, PowerPoint, LucidCharts, Visio, JPEG, PNG, BMP, etc.)
  2. Enterprise Architecture diagrams that are stored in image file formats - and do not rely upon a shared repository - and a reusable element-level inventory definition - require extensive manual effort and time to analyze for impact analysis.


Leverage ML algorithms to:
  1. Automate the process of transforming disparate Enterprise Architecture diagrams (in various source file formats) - into a standard machine-readable meta file format (e.g. Sparx EA XMI).
  2. Specifying an industry standard modeling notation for use in the target output meta file format (e.g. UML, ArchiMate, etc.)
  3. Automatically analyze diagrams - and identify possible categorization relationships between elements/components (organize? or, suggest categorization?) - by inferred organization/application/system boundaries
    • e.g. from a collection of dozens, or hundreds of diagrams - identify candidate elements that may represent reusable components, or that may be repeated across diagrams, or that may be candidates for reusable components (or, shared services)

Research Papers (Background Reading): (work-in-progress...)

Paper: New trends on digitisation of complex engineering drawings

  • Neural Computing and Applications
  • June 2019, Volume 31, Issue 6, pp 1695–1712
  • Authors: Carlos Francisco Moreno-García, Eyad Elyan, Chrisina Jayne
  • Abstract: "Engineering drawings are commonly used across different industries such as oil and gas, mechanical engineering and others. Digitising these drawings is becoming increasingly important. This is mainly due to the legacy of drawings and documents that may provide rich source of information for industries. Analysing these drawings often requires applying aset of digital image processing methods to detect and classify symbols and other components. Despite the recent significant advances in image processing, and in particular in deep neural networks, automatic analysis and processing of these engineering drawings is still far from being complete. This paper presents a general framework for complex engineering drawing digitisation. A thorough and critical review of relevant literature, methods and algorithms in machine learning and machine vision is presented. Real-life industrial scenario on how to contextualise the digitised information from specific type of these drawings, namely piping and instrumentation diagrams, is discussed in details. A discussion of how new trends on machine vision such as deep learning could be applied to this domain is presented with conclusions and suggestions for future research directions."

Paper: Learning icons appearance similarity

  • (Submitted on 1 Feb 2019)
  • Authors: Manuel Lagunas, Elena Garces, Diego Gutierrez
  • Abstract: "Selecting an optimal set of icons is a crucial step in the pipeline of visual design to structure and navigate through content. However, designing the icons sets is usually a difficult task for which expert knowledge is required. In this work, to ease the process of icon set selection to the users, we propose a similarity metric which captures the properties of style and visual identity. We train a Siamese Neural Network with an online dataset of icons organized in visually coherent collections that are used to adaptively sample training data and optimize the training process. As the dataset contains noise, we further collect human-rated information on the perception of icon's similarity which will be used for evaluating and testing the proposed model. We present several results and applications based on searches, kernel visualizations and optimized set proposals that can be helpful for designers and non-expert users while exploring large collections of icons."

Sunday, September 01, 2019

2019-08-31 Saturday - ScaleConf 2019 Youtube Playlist

ScaleConf 2019

There are a few interesting talks that I found in the playlist...that were of particular interest to me.  I will include links below, in the next day or so...

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

2019-08-27 Tuesday - Sparx EA v15 Demo 001 Filtering Diagram Elements with Tagged Property-Value

This is my first demo video for Sparx EA v15 Demo (#001 -  001 Filtering Diagram Elements with Tagged Property-Value)

I've created a playlist on my YouTube channel to organize additional Sparx EA v15 demos I plan to record in the future.
Sparx EA v15 Demos Playlist

Sunday, August 25, 2019

2019-08-25 Sunday - Why You May (or, May Not) Wish to Retain My Services

Photo by Sarah Dorweiler on Unsplash

You should know: If you prefer to keep things the way they are - you may not wish to engage my services :)

1) I will challenge perspectives - and assumptions. Sometimes, this may make some folks uncomfortable.

2) I will help identify gaps and inefficiencies - and make suggestions for improvements. Sometimes, if needed, pointedly. Although, I will always strive to be considerate and diplomatic. Some folks may find change difficult to digest.

3) I will challenge the status quo. At times, this may be discomforting.

4) I will not turn away from looking under rocks. Some folks may not want this.

5) I will actively work to help change things for the better. Some folks may actively resist this.

6) I insist on dealing from the top of the deck - with everyone (board members, executives, employees, contractors, vendors, partners, customers). Some folks may not be aligned with this.

7) I will tell you what you need to hear, not what you want to hear. I am fairly certain - this may not always be well received by some folks.

8) I  will view any project expenditures I may propose - as if it were my own money being spent. You should know, I am a frugal person. I abhor waste. A $1 investment needs to produce a return (however, that return may be expressed in several possible dimensions - not all of which are strictly/directly monetary).

9) I am deeply interested in considering 2nd and 3rd order effects of decisions - considering the enterprise as a patient - that should be diagnosed - and treated - holistically. My perspective can be a positive balancing force with ready-fire-aim cultures - but, it may also create discomfort for some folks.

10) I am very detail oriented. This expresses itself in my work as being thorough. This may be uncomfortable for folks that may not wish to have their areas examined too closely - or who have little interest in root-cause determination.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

2019-08-18 Sunday - Git Repository Naming Conventions Research

Photo by Jeremy Thomas on Unsplash

I've started drafting a proposed guideline document (consider it as a possible baseline from which to custom your own "Git Repository Naming Conventions" standard). This will be published under an Open Source MIT License.

As part of my research, I've reviewed many articles, discussion threads, and have examined the naming conventions used (explicit, implicit, or derived/implied) for repositories in dozens of well known, high profile, Open Source, github accounts.

If you might be interested in receiving a link to review the preliminary draft - just leave a comment, and I'll send you a private message with the link (targeting by early September).

If you have strong opinions, ideas to contribute - please contact me privately.

I welcome suggestions, review feedback, and additional input - and will be happy to include citing your co-authorship. 

If you know of a non-trivial, publicly published, standard/convention - please share that as well in a comment below.

Friday, August 16, 2019

2019-08-15 Friday - Sparx EA v15, now available

Photo by Cesar Carlevarino Aragon on Unsplash

I noted that Sparx EA v15 was officially released on July 27th, 2019

Some particular improvements that I noted after doing a quick read of the Release Notes:
  • Diagrams
    • AWS Architecture and Google Cloud Platform technologies updated to improve behavior when dropping an image with the their toolboxes active
    • Amazon/AWS and Google/GCP toolboxes now check for imported image library during use
    • Amazon/AWS patterns updated
    • Added support for web style back navigation when following a hyperlink on a diagram
  • Source Directory and Visual Studio Solution Import Updated
    • Improved usability for detecting and adding language macros
    • Added a 'Dry Run' option to quickly scan for potential issues
    • Added an option to compare timestamps of files being imported before performing the import (Currently C++ only)
    • Added Package per File option to Solution import
  • Code Engineering
    • Source Code Directory Import 'Package per File' improved
    • Visual Studio Project Import now supports importing as Package per File

  • Other Changes
    • Error handling for bulk updates over the cloud improved
    • Modeled Add-Ins can now be loaded in eap files when JET 4 is disabled
  • User Interface
    • Element Browser now shows a context menu with Navigation Options for root item
    • Traceability window handling for elements with very large numbers of relationships improved
  • Dynamic Model Add-Ins
    • All behavioral code is written in javascript
    • Add-ins can access all Repository based behavior
    • Add-ins can respond to repository events (signals)
    • Add-ins can set up and use property lists
    • Add-ins can call SBPI based API's
    • All code is in Javascript
    • Defined add-ins can be published to XMI or deployed to a RAS service to allow use across multiple models
    • Add-ins can now return "Workflow" in EA_Connect to opt-in to workflow events
    • Can model mail users when state changes
  • Javascript engine updated
    • Built-in javascript support updated to use the Mozilla Spidermonkey 63
    • Provides new functions such as JSON parsing
  • Simple Drawing Style
    • Introducing a new diagram drawing style that will make it easy to draw flat and simplistic diagrams
    • Similar to Visio style drawings
  • Diagram Alternate Views
    • Specification - A document style view of the elements on the current diagram. Focused on the name and the notes of elements\
  • Diagram Matrix View
    • This connector focused view provides a view of how elements on the current diagram are related
    • Provides a relationship matrix view for the elements that appear on a diagram
    • Drawn in a style similar to the state table view
    • Uses existing quicklinker rules to determine which connectors can be created
    • Includes the option to limit the display to those elements that have relationships defined
  • Model Documents XML export
    • Model documents can now be exported to XML that allows importing all linked packages into another model
    • Allows you to easily define a model subset that can be included in a restricted WebEA view


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