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Developer plantations - colonialism of XXI century (GeeCON 2017)

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Slides from my presentation delivered at GeeCON 2017.
Have you ever wondered why great multi-billion dollar software products changing our lives are built in the US, Western Europe or Australia and not in Poland, Ukraine or Bulgaria? Uber, Facebook, Spotify, Tesla (sic!), JIRA - all of them built by software geeks. Are Polish (or other CEE) IT specialists less intelligent or worse than their colleagues from the West? Or maybe it’s about the huge capital those countries have and we don’t. Or maybe the problem is in our approach to IT and our mindset? Regardless of the true reasons, as the effect, tens and hundreds of thousands of relatively low-cost and controllable people in Poland and other CEE countries work on conserving and maintaining software systems envisioned and usually designed elsewhere. Together with other emerging countries, we have become a development plantation for the most modern countries. I’d like to analyse some reasons of this situation and present what mindset change must happen so that Poland and other CEE countries are not anymore colonies providing human resources, but instead have a creational impact on the advancement of the civilisation and modern economy.

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Developer plantations - colonialism of XXI century (GeeCON 2017)

  1. 1. Developer plantations Colonialism of XXI century Wojciech Seliga Kraków, 17-19 May 2017 @wseliga Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0
  2. 2. A FEW QUESTIONS ➤ Who works in Poland or other CEE countries? ➤ Who works in a company with the headquarters in the US, Australia or Western Europe? ➤ Who frequently talks to the end users of the system you develop?
  3. 3. HISTORICAL RESOURCES OF POLAND ➤ woods ➤ crops ➤ coal ➤ iron ,
  4. 4. MODERN RESOURCES OF POLAND ➤ Educated, ambitious and hard- working people resources ➤ Default go-to country for building Shared Service and Outsourcing Centres: ➤ Accounting services ➤ Human Resources ➤ Payroll services ➤ IT services
  5. 5. SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT OUTSOURCING / SHARED SERVICES Picture courtesy of Luc Galoppin - CC BY 2.0
  6. 6. SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT SERVICES BECOME A COMMODITY
  7. 7. A DEMAND FOR DEVELOPERS FOREVER?
  8. 8. MINERS ENGLISH TEACHERS LAWYERS BANKERS Picture courtesy of Willian Soares - CC BY 2.0
  9. 9. GFC SEPTEMBER 11TH DOTCOM BUBBLE Picture courtesy of Marco Bellucci - CC BY 2.0
  10. 10. 2005
  11. 11. ABILITY TO WRITE COMPUTER PROGRAMS BECOMES COMMODITY (like literacy in XX century)
  12. 12. TECHNOLOGY EXCITEMENT & FOCUS Java Scala Ruby React Angular2 Akka Hibernate Node.js Ember.js Vue.js Django Play Mesos Kubernetes Docker Spring C# Hadoop RDS Nagios Redis MongoDB S3 Python Bootstrap Bricks - by Egor Smile - CC BY-SA 4.0 Cement mixer - by Ben Sutherland - CC BY 2.0 Trowel - by Obersachse - CC BY-SA 3.0 Hammer - by Shakespeare at English Wikipedia - CC BY-SA 3.0
  13. 13. BRICKSGOODFOREVERYTHING?
  14. 14. BRICKSGOODFOREVERYTHING?
  15. 15. BRICKSGOODFOREVERYTHING?
  16. 16. BRICKSGOODFOREVERYTHING?
  17. 17. BRICKSGOODFOREVERYTHING?
  18. 18. BRICKSGOODFOREVERYTHING? Ege University Sport Hall courtesy of Mach - CC BY SA 3.0LOT Dreamliner courtesy of Tony Hisgett - CC BY 2.0 Brick house courtesy of Chris Light at English Wikipedia - CC BY SA 3.0 Brick bridge courtesy of Gillie Rhodes - CC BY NC 2.0
  19. 19. Race to the Bottom
  20. 20. WE NEED TO PROVIDE FAR MORE VALUE THAN JUST THE CODE
  21. 21. “TECHNOLOGY” BECOMES IMPLIED
  22. 22. TechnologyProduct Real solution to a real problem
  23. 23. Why How What Technology and software development processes here Traditionally this is “Business” Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle
  24. 24. Why How What Technology and software development processes here Traditionally this is “Business” Developers should try to enter this circle Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle
  25. 25. Tester QA Engineer Project Manager Support Engineer System Admin Product Manager Product Marketing Manager Business Developer Business Analyst Growth Hacker Customer Advocate Account Manager Designer Release Manager Globe by TUBS - CC BY-SA 3.0 Telemarketer Data Scientist Developer
  26. 26. SOFTWARE BUSINESS & PRODUCT SPECIALISTS ARE UNICORNS IN POLAND
  27. 27. The Matrix, WarnerBros, 1999
  28. 28. ARE WE DOOMED? Picture courtesy of Robert Hruzek - CC BY NC ND 2.0
  29. 29. PROGRAMMING
  30. 30. PROGRAMMING SOFTWARE ENGINEERING
  31. 31. PROGRAMMING PRODUCT ENGINEERING SOFTWARE ENGINEERING
  32. 32. PRODUCT ENGINEERING From Wikipedia: …Product engineering usually entails activity dealing with issues of cost, producibility, quality, performance, reliability, serviceability, intended lifespan and user features. These product characteristics are generally all sought in the attempt to make the resulting product attractive to its intended market and a successful contributor to the business of the organization that intends to offer the product to that market….
  33. 33. Software Development Quality Assurance Maintenance Deployment APIs Support Performance Engineering Software Engineering UI Design Vision Data Analysis Design Extensibility Documentation Market Awareness Advocacy Strategy Pricing Strategy User Experience Customer Engagement Competitive Analysis Market Research Inspiring Customers User Research Adoption
  34. 34. Software Development Quality Assurance Maintenance Deployment APIs Support Performance Engineering Product Engineering UI Design Vision Data Analysis Design Extensibility Documentation Market Awareness Advocacy Strategy Pricing Strategy User Experience Customer Engagement Competitive Analysis Market Research Inspiring Customers User Research Adoption
  35. 35. buy/acquire/integrate over build kill over let it rot measure over hope de-scope over half-bake research over guess challenge over believe ask & validate over assume
  36. 36. PRODUCT ENGINEERS ARE NOT ARTISTS
  37. 37. FEEDBACK LOOP WITH THE MARKET/CUSTOMER/USER IS THE ULTIMATE FEEDBACK LOOP PRODUCT ENGINEER IS INTERESTED IN
  38. 38. Photo by wackystuff - CC BY-NC 2.0 Even God himself created the world in 6 iterations! Iterative Execution
  39. 39. PLAYING AS A TEAM Product Engineering is a multi-discipline game
  40. 40. ENGINEERS JUMP TO SOLUTIONS TOO QUICKLY (including yours truly)
  41. 41. PRODUCT ENGINEERING IS ABOUT LEAVING YOUR COMFORT ZONE ➤ enter uncharted territories ➤ make connections with people not from your tribe ➤ go dangerously fast ➤ make constant tradeoffs between time, cost, technical quality and scope Picture courtesy of oklanica - CC BY-NC 2.0
  42. 42. “If everything seems under control, you're not going fast enough -Mario Andretti Photo by Legends of Motorsports - CC BY-SA 2.0
  43. 43. ENGINEERS SEEK ORDER ➤ By default engineers want to see or establish an Order around them ➤ Software engineers want it even more, as the software is infinitely flexible - refactoring, renaming, code style, process improvement & automation, “Clean Code”, … ➤ The balance between The Chaos and The Order is the key - otherwise risk-takers win or you collapse Photo by Rich Renomeron - CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
  44. 44. PRODUCT ENGINEERING IS HARD Photo by jochenWolters - CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
  45. 45. RELATIVELY POOR ECONOMY DOES NOT HELP - CEE VS SILICON VALLEY Plenty of investors? Great networking options? Rich parents? Greater courage? Bigger market? More persistence? Better companies? Photo by Artur Andrzej CC BY-SA 4.0
  46. 46. RELATIVELY POOR ECONOMY DOES NOT HELP - CEE VS SILICON VALLEY Plenty of investors? Great networking options? Rich parents? Greater courage? Bigger market? More persistence? Better companies?
  47. 47. Photo by Jeremy Segrott - CC BY 2.0
  48. 48. The Matrix, WarnerBros, 1999
  49. 49. REALITY - THOSE WHO KNOW “WHY” - TAKE IT ALL Subcontractors / Craftsmen Construction Companies Investment Group Resource Engagement Business - Why & How Technology Outsourcing Companies
  50. 50. REALITY - THOSE WHO KNOW “WHY” - TAKE IT ALL Subcontractors / Craftsmen Construction Companies Investment Group Resource Engagement Subcontractors Craftsmen Construction Companies Investment Group Profits
  51. 51. TECHNOLOGY IS A MEAN, NOT A GOAL FOCUSING JUST ON IT PUTS YOU IN DANGER
  52. 52. KNOW-HOW KNOW-WHY
  53. 53. THE QUEST FOR THE PLACE TO GROW ➤ Direct exposure to customers and the market ➤ Direct exposure to “Business People” ➤ No single centre of gravity abroad ➤ Career paths in “Business”, ideally without the need to relocate ➤ No people pigeonholing (aka. devs can do only coding), a place for generalists ➤ Headquarters in Poland/CEE…? ➤ No slave-driver culture amongst local management (think: Stephen for Django Unchained…) ➤ Local capital involved
  54. 54. PEOPLE WHO STAY IN THEIR COMFORT ZONE DO NOT EVOLVE AND … BECOME IRRELEVANT
  55. 55. IT’S GOOD TIME TO TAKE RISKS WHILE THERE IS STILL A DEMAND FOR DEVELOPERS AND … YOU CAN DEMAND
  56. 56. THANK YOU Twitter: @wseliga We are hiring in Gdańsk! Shameless plug

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