Web reading list for April

Question: Is this David Cameron's rating or Apple share price?
Question: Is this David Cameron’s rating or Apple share price?

Since the week before Easter I’ve been extremely busy – there was the holiday period, followed by a big family celebration, and then last Friday I managed to fall off my bicycle and break some fingers. In short… it’s been quite hectic.

During the family celebration I heard a brilliant quote from a friend, Yehuda, an IT Solution Architect, who had travelled from Israel to join us for a week. We were discussing how IT projects have become either prescriptive (detailed requirements) or business focussed (with high level requirements and leaving the solution to the supplier partner). He tells this to all his customers:

Tell me either what you want to do, or how to do it, but if you tell me both – go and do it yourself.

Continue reading Web reading list for April

A Review of Google Inbox

New Google Inbox - the names and subjects have been blurred to protect the guilty
The new Google Inbox. The names and subjects have been blurred to protect the guilty

Last week one of my Endava colleagues came over to my desk in the office and caught a glimpse of my Outlook Inbox. The way I organise my email is really simple – unread emails in my Inbox constitute my Items To Do. Once I’ve acted upon the email, or strictly speaking, the item-to-do, I then delete the email. I could just rename the Deleted Items folder as Done – to me it’s the same thing because I keep all the emails in my Deleted Items anyway.

To my Endava colleague, my extra simple organisation of Inbox and Deleted Items was alien – they preferred multiple folders, and Follow Up flags, and categories (which I do use in the Calendar, but not email). In fact, she was most upset that most of her emails appeared in my Deleted Items folder – because I’d acted upon them, and not filed away in a project folder .

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AgileLondon at McKinsey Labs

This week I went to AgileLondon which was hosted at McKinsey. It was a really interesting MeetUp-style event with a format I’ve not seen before.

There were seven presentations and we all voted for two of them after a short elevator pitch from the presenters on why their presentation was worthy of being included. The other five were ‘eliminated’ and the audience provided a topic for those presenters to work on while the two were being presented.

Continue reading AgileLondon at McKinsey Labs

Payments International 2015 – Endava & Worldpay Fireside Chat

As the Principal Sponsors of Payments International 2015 event, we had a slot to speak on the closing afternoon (I’m never sure if the last afternoon – especially a Friday afternoon – is a blessing or a curse).

One of our biggest clients in the payments industry, Worldpay, offered to join us at the event, so Nick Telford-Reed, their Director of Technology Innovation, and I both spoke on stage.

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Payments International 2015 – Day 3 report #PayInt15

Today was the final day of the Payments International 2015 conference. Here are my notes. Again I apologise for any brevity, grammatical abominations and spelling errors – this post is a case of publishing speed versus comprehensiveness.


Smart companies and dumb companies - according to Mark Stevenson
Smart companies and dumb companies – according to Mark Stevenson

Mark Stevenson was the keynote speech. Mark is clearly a Marmite presenter – people either like or dislike him. Personally I liked his approach, and during the session started following him immediately at @optimistontour.

His keynote on “Why Infrastructure We Have Now Can’t Survive” began with describing how core infrastructure and business models are soon going to be unfit for purpose.

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Payments International 2015 – Day 2 report #PayInt15

Today I was at Payments International 2015, which is one of the main annual industry events. Endava are the principal sponsors (that’s my disclaimer) – a colleague spoke at the event yesterday, and I’m speaking tomorrow. I was busy elsewhere yesterday, so today was my first day at the conference.

“Apple bites man”

The first keynote talk was from Ben Hammersley, the Editor-in-chief at Wired magazine, but he also does the speaking circuit and he made an interesting documentary about cybercrime earlier this year.

Continue reading Payments International 2015 – Day 2 report #PayInt15

Weekly reading list

Internet of Useless Things - well worth a quick read, even on the throne
The Internet of Useless Things – well worth a quick read, even on the throne

Here are the best articles that I’ve read during the last week:

Warc – Measurement issues hit TV– regular readers will know my frustration with measuring TV audiences. Their time has come, just as they are reporting a sharp decline in audiences. But in an industry based on advertising revenue, the measurement companies are being urged to create ways of showing increasing audience sizes. Bizarre but inevitable.
25 years of Photoshop | Adobe Photoshop 25th anniversary – This one made me feel old. Some beautiful imagery here.
Apple Pay is now the number one mobile payment solution at Staples – When reading any headlines about Apple Pay, remember that Apple Pay has paved the way for contactless technology in the US, which is still growing at a good rate here in the UK.
The Internet of Useless Things – I loved this (thank you Matt) from Rehab, who we’ve done some great work with at Endava.

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Windows 10 one week on

Last week I handed over my perfectly working Surface Pro 3 to our IT department who upgraded it from Windows 8.1 to Windows 10. Here’s my report after spending a week with Microsoft’s latest operating system on Microsoft’s latest tablet/laptop.

Firstly, it’s stable. I have used beta versions of Windows before, from XP to Vista to Windows 8. They all have their own niggles, but Windows 10 is fine. I haven’t had a single crash, despite plugging in all sorts of displays, docking stations, printers and USB devices. Continue reading Windows 10 one week on

Fortnightly web reading list

Here’s what I’ve read over the last fortnight.
One thing I experienced over the last fortnight is that we take cloud services for granted. When I upgraded my work laptop to Windows 10, I lost a few days worth of web pages stored in OneTab because I assumed the bookmarks were saved in the cloud – my apologies.
China tourist visas: user research | Government Digital Service – some great advice and experiences on user testing, and the need to do it face to face sometimes.
Warc – Contactless payment takes off– Contactless payments grew 108% in 2014, but as a new technology, should we be expecting an even higher use?

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Happy Tenth Birthday to YouTube

This weekend was Valentine’s Day, and it was also the tenth anniversary for YouTube. On 15 February 2005, the domain name youtube.com was first registered.

Today, YouTube has more than 1 billion users, and every day people watch hundreds of millions of hours on YouTube and generate billions of views – and this is growing 50% each year. 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute.

20 months after the domain name was registered, the site became incredibly successful and the founders Chad and Steve sold YouTube to Google for $1.65 billion.

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