Monday, October 24, 2011

Umm, Why No, There Aren’t Any More CodeMash 2012 Tickets

If you blinked this morning then unfortunately you’re likely out of luck.

CodeMash 2012 sold through 1200 tickets in 20 minutes.

We on the CodeMash staff are stunned at the excitement and passion our attendees show. Thanks for helping us make this an awesome conference!

CodeMash 2012 Registration Opens Today!

What’s special about October 24th? One should look no further than There you’ll find that in 1901 Anna Edson Taylor was the first person to survive going over Niagara Falls in a barrel. Her Wikipedia page leaves out a little-known, but extraordinarily important fact: she went over the falls, driven mad by having to program in COBOL.

Please, PLEASE, do not let the same thing happen to you. Keep your skills sharp and on the cutting edge. Keep yourself aware of the important things happening in the IT industry, and keep yourself tied in with great networks where you can find wonderful opportunities to keep you engaged, empowered, and motivated – and out of a barrel going over Niagara Falls.

CodeMash 2012 registration opens today at 10:24.

Do NOT delay or fool around. A barrel and ignominy awaits those who miss out.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Know a Diabetic? Help Them (Us!) by Supporting the Artificial Pancreas Campaign

Type 1 diabetes sucks, plain and simple. I won’t bother you with more details than that. Just take my word for it, T1D sucks—and my situation is relatively stable and very controllable compared to many other diabetics I know. Plus, I got my T1 when I was well in to middle age rather than at a very young age. If you’re interested in learning more, then hit any one of the many solid websites on the topic.

What I will bother you with is a request that you help try to sway the Food and Drug Administration’s opinion on speeding up progress around development of an artificial pancreas. (The pancreas produces the body’s insulin – it’s the organ that goes haywire for us diabetics.)

The Low Glucose Suspend (LGS) insulin pump, a precursor to an artificial pancreas, is currently in use in over 40 countries, including Canada, England, France, and Germany. Unfortunately, the FDA blocks diabetics in the US from using the LGS.

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation is sponsoring a petition to send to the FDA encouraging them to move forward with adopting recommendations from industry experts. Adopting these recommendations would result in the FDA approving clinical trials around this sort of device.

The FDA is set to issue its guidance on 1 December, so there’s not much time to sway their opinion. Please take a few minutes, think this over, perhaps do some research on your own, and then go sign the petition if you believe it’s worthwhile.

If the same device is approved in 40 other nations, why in the world shouldn’t diabetics and medical researchers  here in the US have access to it? (Please note that depending on what sources you read from, the FDA isn’t actively blocking use of these devices; it just appears they’re not moving forward with approval in a timely fashion.)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Video of my Selenium Talk from Rocky Mountain Ruby Posted

Back in late August/early September I spoke at the Rocky Mountain Ruby conference in Boulder, Colorado. My talk was about lessons learned dealing with large functional test suites over my career. For example, at a previous job I ran a team that got up to 9,000 Selenium tests scattered across roughly 850 test fixtures. I’ve had similar experiences working on other projects too.

The talk was videotaped and is now up on the Confreaks video hosting site: Surviving Growing from Zero to 15,000 Selenium Tests. Yes, the talk’s title is wrong. I goofed when submitting it.

The fundamentals I lay out in this talk span all test tools and frameworks, so it doesn’t matter if you're writing your tests in Selenium or Watir, or using QTP or Visual Studio. Early in your automation effort you’ve got to address basic problems such as long-running suites, brittle tests, and focusing on automating only the most valuable, critical aspects of your system.

(I like to think that Telerik’s Test Studio helps you navigate these issues a little more easily but 0) I’m biased and B) you absolutely still need to use your grey matter and think about this stuff as you’re doing it!)

This talk was the genesis for my “Automation Isn’t Shiny Toys” talk I’m giving a number of times over the next few months. I’ll be writing up a number of blog posts around this both here at FrazzledDad and at my Telerik blog.

I’d also recommend you watch the Testing Panel discussion from the same conference. I sat on that panel with three other really smart folks and there’s a lot of tremendously useful information on it.

Monday, October 03, 2011

Upcoming Speaking Engagements

Updated AGAIN: I’m also giving my Intro to Unit Testing talk at the Cincinnati Financial User Group on 10/12.

Updated: I had the wrong date for speaking at Dayton! I’m doing that talk on 10/26!

I’m on the road a fair amount over the next couple months talking about maintainable automation and how to keep your sanity while moving forward with it. Here’s where I’ll be at between now and Thanksgiving. I’d love to see you if you’re in the neighborhood!






Anaheim, CA

Cincinnati Financial User Group


Cincinnati, OH

DFW QA Association


Dallas, TX

Dayton .NET Developers Group


Dayton, OH


2-4 Nov

Las Vegas, NV

Agile Testing Days


Berlin, Germany

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