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Showing posts from April, 2014

Exploring the DVCS family that uses change sets rather than timelines (darcs and camp)

I've been interested in DVCS systems for some time. I spend most of my solo programming time for school projects using Fossil which meets my needs perfectly. So far, it has performed very well.  I use git at work.

I've known about darcs but quite frankly I couldn't remember what made it unique.  I spent a few minutes looking over the documentation and watching an excellent video on "camp", a member of the darcs family of DVCS.  The video makes the point that darcs is based on patches, not on chronological commits and branches.  It doesn't sound like much but this is a  huge difference.

While the video makes a great case for how the branches essentially are automatic, it does not address the issue with binary diffs.  And that's where I suspect this system has problems. But that's a minor problem given that binaries are not (traditionally) checked in to source control. With images and video now becoming part of products, this may be an issue in the futu…

Use effective subject lines and abstracts to get attention and results

The tip is simple to remember - don't make me look.

I receive anywhere between fifty and a hundred emails a day on average.  I'm in meetings most of the day.  I get a couple of seconds between meetings to scan my inbox and determine what I'm going to handle immediately.

Don't make me look deeply into your communication.  Tell me why I should open your email, read your blog, look at your tweet, or read your document. I'm not talking about a teaser email, like an advertisement.  I'm talking about an indication of what you expect from me and sufficient information to find your email in the future.

A more completely reasoned version of this was developed by a former McKinsey consultant (Barbara Minto) into the Minto Pyramid. It boils down to leading with the conclusion.

Example #1 (poor):
Subject: important Example #2 (good)
Subject: important email about your trip to Cancun
Example #3 (best)Subject: No Action Required: Confirmation for 3/14/2014 trip to Cancun
The fi…