Saturday, May 10, 2008

The Mythical Man-Month

I ran across a copy of "The Mythical Man-Month" in a second hand book shop yesterday.

Despite being written back in 1975, the book is a still Delphic oracle of software engineering. I credit it (and the friend who introduced me to it) with starting the boost me from a code-monkey-programmer to a software engineer.

The largest theme of the book is that adding manpower to a late software project makes it later.
i.e. if you're behind schedule, adding a newbie is NOT going to help.

Sounds like a truism in these days of XP/Agile/Scrum and so on, but it was revolutionary back then.

Mouse 1 : Scientists 0

I don't often visit the news satire The Onion.

But this article had me crying with laughter...

Son of a bitch mouse solves maze

New to Tivoli Monitoring?

Lets get some content onto this blog.

I'll assume you're a new recruit to your IT company and you now must start working with a product called IBM Tivoli Monitoring (ITM).

Where to start? What to do?

In a (very brief) nutshell, ITM is one of a series of Tivoli products. The entire Tivoli suite is designed to help companies manage and understand the various pieces of computer technology they use. ITM manages the servers and applications that the company uses. Remember Mission control in the movie Apollo 13? Well, they were using NASA specific systems, but the analogy holds - they were using a product which monitors and controls the spacecraft, just like ITM does to the servers.

First day on the job, someone has given you a welcome speech, shown you your chair and you've scribbled your user/password on a note.
What now? How to find information about ITM?

There are three types of websites which will help you
1. IBM documentation
2. Forums
3. Personal / Company websites

The first places you should go are
There are two main public forums for ITM
And here are some websites/blogs by a few people and consultancy companies that supply Tivoli services.
I don't represent any of them, nor should my linking to them constitute endorsement of any kind by myself or my employer (IBM).
But you will pick up a few tips, ideas and help from them which vary from good tips to excellent ones.
By alphabetical order:
All of the sites I've referenced here have RSS options so you don't need to check them daily.

I'm sure I've forgotten any number of other sites, so just drop me a line / add a comment if you think I should add/change anything.

Good luck with your new job ;)