So I'm going to take the plunge and see if this whole weblogging thing is for me. I've been in the field of software development for quite a few years now, and I think I know a thing or two about a thing or two. I offer to my future reader (hi mom!) a vague assurance that the "insight" captured here comes straight from an authentic walking, talking Dilbert comic strip.
You see, as a Java guy, some would argue that I was never a real coder. But I'm a Manager now baby! So I spend my days getting in the way of folks who do real work. In an effort to cement the reputation of do-nothing managers everywhere, I shall set out to prove that we have lots of time on our hands to blog away when we're not surfing for pr0n or harassing our minions for TPS reports. We'll see if my cynical and sarcastic views of the world will entertain anyone else enough to find and frequent my little corner of the web.
So what's with the name? Turmoil a word that I've been fond of for a long, long time. Defined as a state of great disturbance, confusion, or uncertainty; it was the perfect fit for an online gaming identity. So it became my handle from 1993 until just a few years ago. My online gaming ranged from a mechanized warfare game called CyberStrike to a host of FPS games like Quake and Tribes to the John Madden Football series on PS2. It became readily apparent that playing said games competitively online with all the young whippersnappers simply wasn't something that I could accomplish without devoting mass amounts of practice time, so it had to go. And yes, that means I was losing. I'm fiercely competitive. I don't like losing. I do miss playing though. It's greatly rewarding to punish your opponent in a game like Madden, all the while trash talking the 12 year old on the other end of the line with your dorky headset on. The time will come to pick up the sticks again. My son is only 3 months old, but I'm putting him on notice now: I will kick your ass in all video games, at all costs.
OK, where the hell was I? Oh yes, the name. So as an engineer working in a world where everyone is regurgitating old ideas with snazzy new names, I think Turmoil Driven Development or TDD is a nice play on Test Driven Development. I also hope it'll be an appropriate name as I blather on about software craftsmanship and managing people because turmoil is synonymous with chaos and while I'm not sure who to credit with the creation of the phrase, I fully prescribe to the assertion that projects should live on the Chaordic Edge. To paraphrase, a project is most healthy when it is perfectly teetering on the very fine edge between chaos and order. There's just enough adrenaline and uncertainty flying about to keep folks engaged and pissed off but there's also just the right amount of process and oversight to make sure that the team doesn't kill each other on their way to producing software art.