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Showing posts from March, 2014

The Anomic Potential of #NoEstimates

I was looking for a bit of clarification on #NoEstimates, and I remembered reading one of Neil Killick’s posts about it that I thought would be relevant. As I was combing through his blog, looking for the post I had in mind, I stumbled across People Need Estimates . What caught my attention was not so much the title of the post, but the image of a red umbrella that went along with the post. That image of the umbrella, along with the title, had me making the connection between #NoEstimates and the work of Peter L. Berger because Berger says that society creates a sacred canopy (or umbrella) to help us relate to the world in a consistent way, and if we are forced to move from under that canopy we face chaos and fear. I began to get excited as I read the article because, whether he knew it or not, and reference to the umbrella aside, many of the points that Neil was making were resonating with what I remembered reading in Berger’s book The Sacred Canopy: Elements of a Sociology of Reli

Book Review - The Shape of Actions: What Humans and Machines Can Do

If you’re a tester and you’ve been around social media, attended a conference, watched a webinar, read blog posts, or watched videos of other testers speaking on YouTube, you may have heard at least one mention of polimorphic and/or mimeomorphic actions. But what does it mean when someone says that an action is polimorphic or mimeomorphic? Where do these ideas come from, and why, as testers, do we care? The concepts of polimorphic and mimeomorphic actions come from the book The Shape of Actions: What Humans and Machines Can Do, by Harry Collins and Martin Kusch. In the book the authors develop a new theory about what they call the shape of actions. I’ve attempted to cover the highlights and general topics of discussion, or at least what I found most interesting, from each chapter in the summary below. Chapter 1 – Humans and Machines In Chapter 1, Collins and Kusch introduce the reader to their theory which basically states that humans can do three things – they can do polimorp