Cover photo
James O'Sullivan
Works at Building better places to work


James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
Happy Thanksgiving to all my American family and friends
Aaron Day's profile photoAlan Dayley's profile photo
Thanks! The turkey came out nicely this year. 
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
Nespresso's machines and pods are just a delivery mechanism for it's coffee business. If you remove the competitive advantage of being vendor locked, you have to compete on the quality of your product.
Incumbents use lawyers...@Nespresso's business model comes unstuck in France ‪#‎bmgen‬ tks +Alexander Osterwalder 
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
Emergence and its life cycle feels right to me, but I'm going to have to re-read this a few times to fully grok it.
Meg Wheatley posits that there is a lifecycle of emergence as a sequence of stages: 1) Networks 2) Communities of Practice 3) Systems of Influence
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
What are your objections to continuous delivery of quality software?
Chuck Durfee's profile photoHolger Schauer's profile photoJames O'Sullivan's profile photoMorgan Hall's profile photo
The training point is a good one. Customer documentation falls into the same category of being hard to keep up on as well, although well integrated docs teams can usually do pretty well for the major features.

I think an area that it is difficult is when you support a cloud offering and an on-premises offering. Your cloud solution is likely to work quite well with CD. Your on-prem customers will tend to be slower moving and won't be getting every release. This creates a challenge for the support aspect, since some enterprise organizations may only want to do a single upgrade per quarter or year even.

CD is still a good thing, but you have even more configuration management to contend with when rolling out versions to on-prem customers and there is a cost to pay in managing that.

The more control you have over the version your customers run, the easier it is. Ultimately I think the satisfaction and quality that comes from shipping often outweighs the challenges associated with config management for the on-prem customers.

Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
Though I'm uncomfortable with the strength of some of the language in this post, it's generally congruent with my own thoughts about Autism Speaks. Fear-mongering and stigmatizing autistic people makes understanding and acceptance much much harder. I won't light it up blue for autism.

Don't take my word for it though. As always I recommend doing your own research.

Via +Thinking Person's Guide to Autism
Every April, fear-mongering organizations like Autism Speaks – organizations that profit from stigmatizing, harming, and exploiting Autistic people – do a big publicity thing that they call “Autism Awareness Month.” And every April, the Autistic community and their real allies
Vince Lammas's profile photo
I confess to only knowing about some of the issues through my conversations with good friends and their family members who live with the everyday challenges of autism and Aspergers.

I haven't personally seen any evidence of scare-mongering or stigmatising campaigns and I just can't imagine how it would be possible to spread fear about people who really don't seem so different from you and I.

I certainly don't know enough about the two named campaigns to be able to pick or choose between them, though I can understand the point about listening to people directly vs hearing the views of others who might be well-intentioned but seen by some as misguided.

Isn't that just the politics of different perspectives, which relates to every issue on the planet?
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
The last two years made me forget how much I love software development. Now that I'm back to working on modern web based tech I'm back to loving coding again
James O'Sullivan's profile photoMartin Donnelly's profile photoMorgan Hall's profile photo
I have often thought it would be worth it to just offer a Starbucks or other gift card for people to just come back in a different browser. Throw up a dialog complaining about IE and offering a way to claim a gift. Obviously too easy to hack, but god we spend too much time supporting IE oddities. 
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
Just because humans naturally form hierarchies, doesn't mean that they the optimal way of structuring ourselves. In some places they are downright harmful (social hierarchies for example). I'm not completely against hierarchies. They work well for simple domains, unfortunately few things are simple these days. Layering a hierarchy over a complex or complicated system can restrain the system or cause more complexity. 
Brundizzle B (verified by your mother)'s profile photoJames O'Sullivan's profile photo
+Bruno Vela point well made. Perhaps it's that we have different types of complexity which require us to be far more responsive and flexible than in the past due to increasing automation, connectivity and lower barriers to entry. A complexity that requires new models to be effective.
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
To say that I'm confused about my career path is putting it mildly. I constantly reverberate between several themes (in no particular order):

1 - I love writing software when I have autonomy, mastery and purpose.

2 - I love helping build, guide and mentor teams towards high performance.

3 - I need to be hands on, but not necessarily all the time.

4 - I dislike people management, but love technical mentoring.

5 - I love seeing things grow and mature and being part of that.

6 - I dislike consultancy because of number 5.

7 - I'm passionate about building places of work where people can thrive.

8 - I think I can make difference in small and medium-sized businesses with regards to number 7, but realise that I can't do it just from grass roots efforts.

9 - I'm unhappy when I'm not part of forming technology strategy.

10 - I need to be continually learning and experimenting.

11 - I really dislike people management.

12 - I'm worried about being able to get a software development job when I'm in my fifties (still a while away yet), due to the bias towards youth. Even though it's been proved that this bias is unfounded.

13 - I want to experiment with different organisation structures.

14 - I need to be part of something bigger than me.

15 - I love product development, not project development.

The typical path would put me into fulltime management, which would satisfy some of the above, but I don't think would satisfy me.
Staying in software development would also satisfy some of the above, but I'm really worried about 12. It also doesn't give me much clout to deal with larger organisational issues which is my dual passion (thriving) along with software development.

Now that I look again at the items above, I think I need to go back to technology start-up life and grow with a company from the beginning. Until I come across the right opportunity, I think my next step will be into an established innovative technology company such as Google, somewhere that is continually pushing the boundaries. 
Gideon Rosenblatt's profile photoAlan Dayley's profile photoJames O'Sullivan's profile photoJonathan Mendez's profile photo
+Alan Dayley Without getting into too many details, I'll just say that I appreciate the caution and am very aware that just because I've been allowed to carve my own path doesn't mean it's all rosy :). Interestingly, in this role I've tended to get more visibility outside my own department than within it.
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
Having been on teams in survival mode in the past, these signs are all too familiar.
Interesting list of signs for survival mode. I would like to highlight the last point / sign: "Being non productive for a long period of time". This looks highly unintuitive, doesn't it? The expectation would be that you are so busy banging out or fixing things and you have to, to survive your current situation, and that's the definition of productive, no? No. Actually, I've seen this happen more than once that people were completely stressed because there was so much to do that they actually couldn't finish anything.
I know of myself that if pressure and stress overwhelms me I tend to end up procrastinating, because I either lack the guidance of what to fix first or I already lack the power to actually push through and finish whatever is at hand. And of course, this is just adding to the stress, so it's a self-feeding process that keeps you under pressure. You have to actively step back and break the vicious circle. I mainly use a personal backlog of sorts to notice when I fall into this trap and I try to address the problem head-on when I notice it.
We had an interesting discussion in class on how one can detect you might be in survival mode. Her...
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
The business operating system

Software development is core to your business rather than a supporting function, whether you like it or not. Every company has different needs and piecemeal generic or big box solutions don't cut it anymore. Not only does software allow you to streamline your business, it allows you to codify how your business works. Essentially creating a business operating system (bOS) on which your company runs. In turn this will allow you to respond quicker to market pressures, enabling your agility. It can do this because software is easier to change and more reliable than written process which people have to follow. Combine your bOS with analytics to get deeper insights about internal changes and their impact on customers and employees. This data gives you extra confidence to refactor your business. I'd argue that your bOS should be custom and you have developers in-house to develop it. No-one knows your business like you do and an established software development department can build up that domain knowledge to help be a better partner.

Take care though, quality and architecture have to be key. Any software that has accrued large amounts of technical debt can slow things down, and in this case hamper your agility. This includes software that has grown organically, but rarely refactored from a holistic standpoint.

I truly believe that companies who have software as their core, connecting everything and everyone, will be the ones that survive during this current age of disruption. 
Aaron Day's profile photoJames O'Sullivan's profile photoBrundizzle B (verified by your mother)'s profile photo
"core to your business"  is delivering value for your customers.

i know this is completely besides your point:)   
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
Many companies consider Continuous Delivery as luxury, undesirable or impossible for their business. I believe that it's the opposite and is going to be a critical skill for companies that want to survive this current age of disruption. If you can deliver software to production on demand, it opens you up to various possibilities. For example, you can react quickly to shifts in the market, or perhaps conduct experiments for new features or products.
More innovation with less stress - +Stephen Denning explores the Etsy experience
How does, the rapidly-growing billion dollar online market, deploy more than thirty software improvements each day, in the workplace that is low stress? The future is already here.
Erik Andersson's profile photo
Ah. Very interesting reading. 
Add a comment...

James O'Sullivan

Shared publicly  - 
Remember April is autism awareness month not autism fear month. Fear might be an easy way to raise awareness about an issue, but it makes understanding and acceptance much much harder. Using words such as tragedy and epidemic are not only false, but hurt more than help. If you want to raise your awareness about autism (which is only the first step), spend some time getting to know a family with autistic children, or autistic adults. Recognise their challenges and help where you can. 
Marita Beard's profile photo
Add a comment...
We need to have places to work where people thrive not just survive.
Basic Information
Apps with Google+ Sign-in
  • Fallout Shelter
Software Development Team Leader
  • Building better places to work
    -, 2012 - present
  • OzoneHR
    Scrum Master & Senior Developer, 2010 - 2012
  • Aptia Systems
    Director of Technology, 2008 - 2010
  • Aptia Systems
    Lead Developer, 2002 - 2008
  • EHS Realtime
    Lead Developer, 2000 - 2001
  • Torrington Interactive
    Technical Project Manager, 2000 - 2000
  • Escape Technologies
    Senior Developer, 1999 - 2000
  • Direct Connection
    Senior Internet Solutions Developer, 1996 - 1999
James O'Sullivan's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
Flooby Nooby: Line of Action - Mickey's Christmas Carol

As shown in this post, the position and posture of the characters in the scene can greatly effect the staging and composition for any animat

Can I Start My Software Career As A Scum Master of Coach?

I don't want to be a downer, but I need to give an observation (out of love) which will cause everyone to not like me for about a week. Nobo

Thinking Person's Guide to Autism: Best Autism Conference Ever: The UK N...

I had no idea autism acceptance and understanding in the UK were so much more culturally ingrained than in the US. Granted, there is still m

I, too, am racialized.

TW/Content: Brief discussions of violence and ableism, detailed discussions of racism and racist microaggressions. ... I, too, am racialized

Plants vs. Zombies™ 2

"Plants vs. Zombies 2 es una descarga obligatoria." —CNET"No es que sea bueno. Ni siquiera genial. Es un clásico instantáneo." —"

Seth's Blog: The first lie...

is that you're going to need far more talent than you were born with. The second lie is that the people who are leading in the new connectio

"A" Players

I hear many references to organizations wanting to follow the advice of Steve Jobs and to have only what he called "A Players". Jobs' logic

Social Business is Dead! Long Live What’s Next! - Chris Heuer - Brian Solis

Tweet. October 16, 2013; 54 Comments · shutterstock_111469742. Guest post by Chris Heuer, CEO, Alynd (@chrisheuer). When I heard Marc Beniof

Google Play Books

Choose from millions of titles on Google Play including new releases, New York Times best sellers, up-and-coming authors, and free books. Ea

Crisp's Blog » Culture > Process (Paris Scrum Gathering keynote)

Here are the slides for my keynote “Culture > Process” at the Paris Scrum Gathering. Amazing level of enthusiasm in the room, seems like thi


Moves automatically tracks your everyday life and exercise. Just carry your phone in your pocket or bag. FEATURES • Automatic Tracking: Reco

The Most Powerful Leadership Question

Every leader desires to be the most effective leader he can be, but in order to make a lasting impact, he must commit to supporting all stud

Seth's Blog: The truth about the war for talent

It's more of a skirmish, actually. Plenty of recruiters and those in HR like to talk about engaging in a war for talent, but to be truthful,

Plague Inc.

Plague Inc. is a unique mix of high strategy and terrifyingly realistic simulation from developer Ndemic Creations and brought to you on And

Jef Claes: Inheritance is like Jenga

The personal blog of Jef Claes on software and life

Fing - Network Tools

Born from the ashes of Look@LAN Network Monitor, Fing is the ultimate toolkit for network management: * network discovery * service scan (TC

The most interesting things I've learned about organisational culture

Value statements and culture books are more "culture theatre" than actual culture. Culture is not visible artefacts nor behaviour but rather

Minecraft - Pocket Edition

Minecraft is about placing blocks to build things and going on adventures!Pocket Edition includes randomly generated worlds, multiplayer ove

Something went wrong with Scrum: Analogies with the Underpant Gnomes and...

Story card hell is when you have 300 story cards and you have to keep track of them all. [...] Every customer I've ever worked with wanted t

Review of The Autistic Brain | Beautiful Minds, Scientific American Blog...

To many, Temple Grandin is the public face of autism. A professor of animal science at Colorado State University, Grandin's story has signif

This is my go to Italian restaurant in the Borough area. Great food. Haven't had a bad meal there yet.
Public - 3 years ago
reviewed 3 years ago
1 review