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Author Archive: bfwebster

Webster is Principal and Founder at at Bruce F. Webster & Associates, as well as an Adjunct Professor for the BYU Computer Science Department. He works with organizations to help them with troubled or failed information technology (IT) projects. He has also worked in several dozen legal cases as a consultant and as a testifying expert, both in the United States and Japan. He can be reached at 303.502.4141 or at bwebster@bfwa.com.

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The Wetware Crisis: All Our Sins Remembered – Intro

May 14, 2008 0 Comments
The Wetware Crisis: All Our Sins Remembered – Intro

[Copyright 2008 by Bruce F. Webster. All rights reserved. Adapted from Surviving Complexity (forthcoming).] Humanity has been developing information technology for half a century. That experience has taught us this unpleasant truth: virtually every information technology project above a certain size or complexity is significantly late and over budget or fails altogether; those that don’t […]

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The Dead Sea Effect: why would IT engineers leave Google?

May 5, 2008 4 Comments
The Dead Sea Effect: why would IT engineers leave Google?

In my post on the “Dead Sea Effect“, I talk about why the overall quality of personnel in large corporate and government IT shops declines over time (short answer: the great IT engineers leave for greener pastures, the not-so-great ones stay and entrench). So, why would IT engineers leave one of the most highly regarded, […]

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Some thoughts on “Up or Out”

April 29, 2008 8 Comments
Some thoughts on “Up or Out”

[UPDATE: Here are some more observations from Ruby-coloured glasses.] Alex Papadimoulis over at The Daily WTF (one of my favorite IT blogs) has posted a lengthy and thoughtful solution to the problems I raised in my post on the “Dead Sea effect“. Specifically, he refers to the “Up or Out” model, pioneered over a century […]

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The Wetware Crisis: the Expert Pool

April 26, 2008 4 Comments
The Wetware Crisis: the Expert Pool

[Note: I originally wrote about this concept in my first edition of The Art of ‘Ware and was going to include it in version 2.0 of that book. However, my review of the most recent translations of the oldest manuscripts of Suntzu pingfa has led me to re-interpret the maxims for that section. As a […]

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Negotiations and Lovesongs: Introduction

April 16, 2008 1 Comment
Negotiations and Lovesongs: Introduction

[Copyright 2008 by Bruce F. Webster. All rights reserved. Adapted from Surviving Complexity (forthcoming).] Two disappointed believers, Two people playing the game. Negotiations and love songs Are often mistaken for one and the same. — “Train in the Distance”, Paul Simon I used to have arguments with Carol Teasley, one of my mentors, regarding software […]

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