Every Friday since somewhere in 2007 or 2008, developers and other co-workers at Accusoft come together for Tech Talk during lunch and watch a video presentation centered around topics of interest. These are usually videos from conferences likeTechEd, Google I/O, or any of the other numerous technical events that happen each year. We also watch inspirational videos from TED or other business, management or general interest videos. Accusoft is nice enough to supply us lunch during the videos and everyone has a good time sharing in the new information.
November is the last month that I show Friday videos since December is often filled with people taking various days off. Since it’s hard work finding videos every week, having a month off to build up a stockpile of videos is actually relaxing.
We started the month off with a video from TechEd North America 2012, then a few videos from the Microsoft BUILD 2012 conference that just completed, and finish the month with some thought-provoking TED Talks.
Metrics That Matter: Improving Lean and Agile, Kanban and Scrum
It discusses some of the general problems with metrics and gives a pretty good introduction to the different things measured in Kanban and Scrum.
SignalR looks like a great abstraction layer over something that is becoming more and more common, real-time web communication. I love that they’ve built various fallback implementations, allowing you to seamlessly use WebSockets all the way down to Long Polling with the exact same code.
Angle Brackets and Curly Braces
For the last Friday of the month I pick TED talk videos that I find interesting. There is no theme here, just things that are usually a little lighter, maybe a bit more humorous than the usual technical videos.
Psychology and Behavioral Economics always come up with great research. These two videos discuss cognitive limitations and conflicts of interest. The discussion of cognitive limitations and the suggestion that we should treat them more like physical limitations is enticing.
We used Peter Norvig’s textbook in my Intro to AI class. I wish I had had the room in my schedule to sign up for his online class when he did this. The ability to teach 100K students is incredible and is just the beginning of the changes we will see in education.
Being able to change your chemistry by changing how you sit or stand is powerful information. I wonder how many people went back to their office and di the Power Pose after this video.
A video I watched a few years ago reported on studies that said if you end with something pleasant then that is what will be remembered most. So, who doesn’t like Magic and Augmented Reality?
The availability of conference videos online has made this great learning experience possible. It is a huge time and money saver for the company and sparks some great conversations among coworkers. The Amazone re:Invent conference just wrapped up and I am looking forward to sharing those videos with the office next year.
Share with us in the comments below what has inspired you from TED, BUILD 2012, TechEd or any other events over the past year.