Playing Lean: the board game every entrepreneur or agile practitioner should play

Yesterday at work I had the opportunity to play a board game I had not heard about before: Playing Lean. It was one of the most entertaining days at work I’ve ever had.

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I tried the new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, and it’s better than I expected

Last week I had the chance to try the new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, in 13 and 15 inches, and I got a better experience with it than I was expecting to have. Continue reading “I tried the new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, and it’s better than I expected”

I’m now a Splunk Certified Power User!

Last week I got certified as a Splunk Power User! I took the online test after doing all the pre-required courses and passed it.

For those interested in getting certified, here are some tips:

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Agile Inceptions: 5 tips to make them more efficient

Inceptions suffer from the same problems that affect long meetings full of people:

  1. Having a lot of people in a room like your stakeholders, your team, your boss and your boss’s boss means only one thing: long discussions about opinions and points of view, without real hard data to back those opinions, which make discussions even longer. This of course means you can’t obtain much value for your product after these discussions.
  2. It’s normal to also have people connected via video-conference like Skype or Google Hangouts. It’s 2016 but we still have issues with these types of virtual meetings, specially with internet connections not being as good as they should be. This means you’ll probably have to repeat something many times in order for everyone on the other side of the screen to understand what you’re trying to communicate.
  3. Since there are so many people invited to this event, there’s probably more than one that will be late and you’ll have to do a summary of what has been discussed up to that point, only for that person, but wasting everyone else’s time.
  4. The Inceptions I’ve been to have lasted 5 consecutive days. 5 days! 5 days, with at least 10 people in the room, for 8 hours a day… that’s 400 hours of engineers, designers, project managers and executives. Are you sure you need that much capacity in order to know what product to build and set your initial backlog? Do you really need these really expensive 400 hours?

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Splunk Conference 2016 (.conf2016): What a great experience!

Felipe Cerda - Splunk2 weeks ago I had the opportunity to attend the 7th anual Splunk Conference – .conf2016 in Orlando, Florida. In this post I want to briefly share my experience with you.

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El día que aprendí a siempre tener y nunca olvidar las checklists

Hoy mi día empezó así:

Seagull Extra 300L

Pero 10 minutos después esto pasó:


Mi nuevo avión Extra 300L con recién 3 vuelos estaba completamente destruido. Alcancé a dar algunas vueltas con el avión cuando repentinamente un ala se desprende del fuselaje y un segundo después la otra ala hace lo mismo y lo que quedaba del avión cae como un piano en picada. El fuselaje de perdió completamente y el escape del motor se dobló. El resto se salvó, incluyendo las alas, motor y toda la electrónica del avión. Todo porque se me olvidó instalar los tornillos que sujetan las alas con el fuselaje.

Despues de lamentar la pérdida comencé a pensar en por qué me había olvidado de tan pequeño detalle que causó este accidente.

En mi caso no usé un checklist que me hiciera revisar todos los elementos previos al vuelo como cargar combustible, revisar baterías cargadas e instalar los tornillos de las alas, entre otros. Y entonces ¿por qué no tenía un checklist? Porque me confié. Confié en mi experiencia y en que había hecho este procedimiento decenas de veces en otros aviones.

En aviación esa es exactamente la razón porque existen los checklists. Los factores humanos son un tópico de estudio para cualquier aspirante a piloto y un tema de investigación para organizaciones relacionadas a la seguridad en la industria aérea. Los factores humanos y nuestra infinita capacidad a equivocarnos hasta en las cosas más simples han hecho que se tengan que implementar sistemas como los checklists para estar lo más seguros posibles de que no olvidamos ningún ítem como parte de algún procedimiento.

Si los pilotos de aviones de tamaño real revisan una lista de ítems a cumplir antes del despegue y aterrizaje, entonces voy a aplicar lo mismo en el aeromodelismo. La memoria es demasiado frágil y la confianza puede jugar malas pasadas.

Kindle Paperwhite: What a Great Invention!

kindle_paperwhiteIt’s no wonder that the Kindle Paperwhite is one of the best Kindles ever created by Amazon. And you can go to its official page to read all the specifications and features. In this brief post I want to share my experience with it and the reasons why I like it so much over the previous versions.

The Paperwhite is my third Kindle. I previously owned a Kindle Keyboard and a Kindle 4. This one is the best by far. Here’s why:

  1. It has a backlight so you can read at night. With all the previous Kindles you needed a lamp and that was very uncomfortable.
  2. It has no buttons and has a touch screen. This makes it so much easier to use. Turning pages by touching the screen and highlighting text with your finger instead of touching buttons is great. After using the Paperwhite it’s easy to think that it was so tedious to use the buttons with the other Kindles, especially typing or highlighting text.
  3. Because of the 2 reasons above, you can really focus on your reading and not on the device you’re holding. With the other Kindles I was still aware of the device so it distracted me a bit. The Paperwhite makes you forget about the Kindle itself and focus on the content 100%.
  4. It’s light, slim and easy to hold.
  5. The battery runs for weeks! It’s been more than 2 weeks since I bought it and I haven’t charged it yet.

I highly recommend The Kindle Paperwhite to anyone who loves reading. I still like to have physical books on my shelf, but the practicality that the Kindle Paperwhite brings just beats real paper.

Apple Lost its Common Sense

Have you seen the latest product Apple launched? The Smart Battery Case. If not, here it is:

Apple Smart Battery Case

As you can see, it’s very very ugly. If you asked 100 designers to come up with a battery case, I don’t think this design would have been the winner.

Something happened at Apple, and not just with this product, but with the ones released before like the new Magic Mouse 2 and the iPad Pro.

Look at how you have to charge the Magic Mouse 2. You can’t use the mouse while charging it. The previous version used 2 AA batteries that could be replaced in 10 seconds so you can continue using the device.


And look at how you have to charge the new Apple Pencil for the iPad Pro


That looks fragile. The slightest bad move on the pencil and it looks it’s going to break.

Apple lost its common sense. It’s like if Apple decided to fire the guy that made the last check before releasing a product. The guy that said “no we can’t launch that, it’s too ugly” or “that doesn’t make sense” or “the usability of that product does not exist” is not working for Apple anymore. Or maybe… was that guy Steve Jobs?

In his biography written by Walter Isaacson, it is mentioned that he always did that kind of things. Even if a product was ready to be released or in its final stages, he would look at it or use it and he would say it was too ugly, dumb or unusable and the product would be discarded.

If Apple wants us to feel that their products are special and carefully thought out again, they need a guy that makes that final check. They need a guy with a lot of common sense. Releasing a product just because it works good enough is a thing for Samsung or other competitors.

DU-BRO Factory Tour Video (7 minutes)

As some of you already know, I’m a big fan of RC (Radio Controlled) planes and I fly them as a hobby. This is why I want to share this video with you. It’s a quick tour of the DU-BRO factory.

DU-BRO is one of the best companies that makes parts and accessories for the RC world, including fuel tanks, push rods, wheels, and a list of about 1200 more items. They are based in the USA and in the RC world that is a synonym for quality, which is rare to find these days where almost everything is made in China.