Jenkins-as-Code: Creating Jenkins jobs with text, not clicks

This is the first in a series of posts on how we upped our Jenkins game by treating Jenkins jobs as code, rather than pointing-and-clicking to create jobs. In this series, I’ll cover: the problems we had as our Jenkins use scaled throughout the organization the target conditions we wished to achieve how we addressed those problems using the job-dsl-plugin along with some sugar on top what the development workflow looks like what a realistic set of jobs looks like for a sample project the sugar we built on top of job-dsl-plugin how we encouraged adoption of this approach across teams … Continue reading Jenkins-as-Code: Creating Jenkins jobs with text, not clicks

It’s my chicken!

This is a quick story about parenting, and about positive self-talk. Several months ago, our youngest daughter joined a local soccer rec league. It’s her first experience playing soccer outside of the occasional game in gym class. We’re not a rabid soccer family; my wife never played, I played a year in high school, and our oldest daughter played for a few seasons when she was little, much to her displeasure. Now, being her first time and all, our youngest had pretty much no clue what to do, or what was going on in general. There’s a ball; there’s a goal. there’s lots … Continue reading It’s my chicken!

2015 Year in review; What’s coming in 2016

Before diving head-first in to 2016, I want to look back a year and look forward a bit less than that. It’s said, “The days go by so slowly, and the years go by so fast,” and I see evidence of that when reflecting over a timeline of at least as long as a year This was my 2015: Changes at work Since about mid-2013, at my dayjob I’ve been the nominal, non-supervisory team lead for what was once called our “Release Management” team and is now called “Software Delivery” team. It’s grown considerably since its inception, both in terms … Continue reading 2015 Year in review; What’s coming in 2016

A Learning Approach to processing emails after returning from vacation

Anyone who works in an email-reliant organization knows the pain of dealing with emails after a vacation of more than a few days. Hours, perhaps even days, spent dealing with hundreds or thousands of emails that have piled up. Herein, I’ll describe an approach to processing emails with the goals of: Catching up on important decisions Learning about your team Quickly moving on to more important work Most email is time-sensitive and will be irrelevant by the time you read it after vacation. Spending hours or days trying to catch up is a fool’s errand, prompted primarily by Fear of Missing Out … Continue reading A Learning Approach to processing emails after returning from vacation

On 18F: past and future

Disclosures: at the time of this writing 1) I work for the U.S. federal government. 2) several former colleagues currently work at 18F 3) my perspectives are decidedly civil and not defense 18F is a digital services delivery team within the U.S. federal government General Services Administration (GSA), recently celebrating its 1 year anniversary. Since inception, it’s created or strongly promoted several public applications and initiatives, including Hub, Midas, Analytics, HTTPS initiative, and much more. 18F publicizes its project statuses on a dashboard. I know first hand how hard it can be to get things done in federal government IT, and … Continue reading On 18F: past and future