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Polar Expeditions and Agility: the 1910 Race to the South Pole and Modern Tales


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Let's follow the 1910 race to the South Pole, as well as modern and personal expeditions to discover how the polar world can inspire agility in software development
Agiletour lausanne-2016

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Polar Expeditions and Agility: the 1910 Race to the South Pole and Modern Tales

  1. 1. Polar Expeditions and Agility: The 1910 Race to the South Pole and Modern Tales Alexandre Masselot Agile Tour, Lausanne November 2016
  2. 2. Alexandre Masselot Agile Tour, Lausanne November 2016 Polar Expeditions and Agility: The 1910 Race to the South Pole and Modern Tales
  3. 3. Polar Expeditions and IT projects a goal, a team, constraints, risks and a methodology
  4. 4. Polar world 101 1. South & Greenland: an icecap 2. North: a frozen sea and polar bears 3. It’s cold, but it’s cool
  5. 5. Polar world in 1900 The last unconquered lands
  6. 6. Robert F. Scott - British - Captain in the Royal Navy - Average evaluations, but eager to climb the ladder At the South Pole
  7. 7. Roald Amundsen - Norwegian, skier - North West Passage
 1903-1906 - South Pole
 1910-1912 At the South Pole
  8. 8. Today, still in Norway
  9. 9. Børge Ousland - Norwegian - North Pole - North Pole solo - Antarctica crossing solo - Arctic crossing solo - North Pole Winter crossing Solo or small parties, Unsupported
  10. 10. “Børge Ousland is arguably the most accomplished polar explorer alive!”
 National Geographic
  11. 11. Børge, Sjur, Liv, Vegard
 and the others: The Oslo Gang
  12. 12. … and a personal perspective
  13. 13. Alex - Ten years of polar expeditions - Two Greenland crossing - Polar bear sightseeing in western Svalbard - Patagonia Northern Icecap (a turn back) - Small parties or solo, Unsupported
  14. 14. Introductions are over, may the expeditions start!
  15. 15. And everything starts with
  16. 16. A Vision
  17. 17. The vision Google’s: “to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Agile consulting 1st workshop: Framing the vision Never seen a team where folks could not simply phrase their job goal?
  18. 18. The vision “Going to the pole and back” AMUNDSEN 2 goals, plus collecting stones… SCOTT “Scott was marshaling his forces
 for a ponderous campaign,
 while Amundsen was sailing on a raid” Roland Huntford A map is display in the chart room
 for “everybody’s use”
  19. 19. The contemporary vision: “from A to B, unsupported”
  20. 20. We have a vision, let’s assemble a team!
  21. 21. “The wrong companion is infinitely more dangerous than the worst blizzard” R. Amundsen
  22. 22. Building a team That resonates like IT project management “There were many men, shoved at random” Wilson SCOTT “A small team of chosen specialists” Huntford AMUNDSEN
  23. 23. Amundsen interview patterns Seeking for “I don’t know” and “I cannot do that”
  24. 24. Team Organisation -Applies the Royal Navy rules -“Lt Ewans, Campbell and Wilson have formed
 a sledging committee and I am nominally the 
 secretary […] with not much to do.” Cherry Gallard SCOTT -Everybody takes turn, cleaning dog shit,
 handling the rudder… including the Captain -A pilot on Fram: “It was the most astonishing boat
 I have ever seen. No order were given but everyone
 seemed to know exactly what to do.” AMUNDSEN
  25. 25. Team Organisation -The boss did not show in the shop except if called. AMUNDSEN
  26. 26. Team Organisation AMUNDSEN SCOTT All men share
 the same
 comfort level. Officers have
 separate quarters
  27. 27. The leader position “Discipline was instinctive. […] He often used to say that on board all were captains and all crews […] But nevertheless nobody was in any doubt who was the chief on board” Helmer Hanssen AMUNDSEN SCOTT “Myself, I dislike Scott intensely […] He is not straight, it is himself first, the rest nowhere.” Lawrence Oates
  28. 28. We have a team, Let’s hit the snow!
  29. 29. Problem #1: Moving on snow
  30. 30. Dogs or no dogs: the expert voice -Nansen: “go find dogs in Siberia!” -Inuit: “how can we move without dogs?”
  31. 31. Dogs or no dogs: Tradition rules “No Ski. No dog” Sir Clements Markham, 1888
 Father of modern British Antarctic Exploration Sticking to legacy Oracle for all problems
 When NoSQL opens new horizons “I use MongoDB for all my NoSQL challenge,
 because it’s the only one I know.”
  32. 32. Dogs or no dogs? AMUNDSEN SCOTT Sails with 52 dogs Sailed with ponies,
 cars, dogs and man hauling Focused on ponies A key to success They will die before start Can be eaten “It’s not human to eat
 these poor creatures”
  33. 33. Dogs or no dogs: learn the tool AMUNDSEN SCOTT Improve, optimize sledge, ski… Train, test played football
  34. 34. Dogs or no dogs AMUNDSEN SCOTT
  35. 35. Tradition is not always beaten Amundsen shoes ruled
 the polar world until early 2000 R for graphics LaTeX for publication A well crafted set of Perl scripts for infra tasks
  36. 36. Innovation: other ways to move To cross a sea of ice,
 why not using sails?
 Nansen, 1888 Greenland 2002
  37. 37. Disruption: crossing arctic waters © National Geographic
  38. 38. Process automation wherever possible Camping by -39°C can be smooth: -Learn from others -Have a clear routine -Improve each steps to make it as smooth as possible Testing (unit, integration, system, perf…) - Deployment - Monitoring - Incident handling -
  39. 39. Continuous improvement The Gjøa went ashore twice, ⇒ a man was in the crow nest 24/7 Retrospective Actually do it! AMUNDSEN Lessons learned: -first thing in the plane home -published on the net
  40. 40. Spitsbergen 1996
  41. 41. Decision Making Hielo Sur, Patagonia 2000
  42. 42. Group decision making - Phrase the topic at hand and a scope - Encourage and listen everyone’s opinion - Trigger alternatives if only one solution is foreseen Setup a mindset where: - the decision is built upon group contribution - “the best solution is not my solution” - “I’m not stupid because the group did not go for my idea”
  43. 43. A simple pattern: rank decides SCOTT
  44. 44. Managing Risk
  45. 45. How to avoid being eaten by a polar bear? -learn from past incidents -don’t listen to “reasonable voices” -get a clear process for crisis -enjoy! Spitsbergen, 2001
  46. 46. The main risk: starvation -one depot every degree -carefully packed -depot were marked sideways
 (to be found in the fog) AMUNDSEN -minimalist depots SCOTT The strategy is to lay food depot
 along the route
  47. 47. Amundsen back to base camp Scott team R.I.P. {
  49. 49. SCOTTAMUNDSEN “Victory awaits him who has everything in order 
 — luck, people call it.
 Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time;
 this is called bad luck.” “Our luck in weather is preposterous… How great may be the element of luck”
  50. 50. Ice river crossing, Greenland 1998
  51. 51. Landing ashore
  52. 52. Oslo, the Silicon Valley of polar expeditions
  53. 53. Agility is not about rituals Agility is about growing a group, values and a mindset to go after a project.
  54. 54. Every organization can change
  55. 55. En route vers de nouvelles aventures Fram!