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Kevin Matheny
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Technology problem-solver. Dad. Tabletop & computer gamer. Terrible guitarist.
Technology problem-solver. Dad. Tabletop & computer gamer. Terrible guitarist.

394 followers
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+James Wright is making great points here. 
Free Stuff
Free Stuff
stonekettle.com
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“There’s a mountain of data that we have at our disposal,” says Todd Yellin, Netflix’s VP of product innovation. Netflix has a well-earned reputation for using the information it gleans about its customers to drive everything from the look of the service to the shows in which it invests. “That mountain is composed of two things. Garbage is 99 percent of that mountain. Gold is one percent… . Geography, age, and gender? We put that in the garbage heap. Where you live is not that important.”
"That mountain is composed of two things. Garbage is 99 percent of that mountain. Gold is one percent…" 📽📺
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And with that click, I have registered for Agile 2016. 
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Wisdom, which is pretty much par for the course for +Esther Derby . 
In response to a post advocating measuring "agility," I replied:

My aim with employing agile methods is to improve the effectiveness of the over all system. So I look aspects of the organization that agile methods can move:

value work vs. fixing work
release cycle time
through put

I may look at work satisfaction or retention, but these are often slow moving.

If the work is still coming into teams in a chaotic, half-baked manner, or there are deep technical issues, agile methods alone are probably not be enough to move these dials.

I see "agility assessments" that ask binary questions such as "Does your team have a ScrumMaster," or "Are teams doing retrospectives." Questions like these may measure (surface) compliance. But they aren't particularly helpful in understanding what the issues are, or whether agile methods are moving the trend line on those issues. (Or even if people are doing something that aligns with the core principles of agile.)

What other measures seem useful?
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I've been spending an inordinate amount of time the past couple of weeks working on superhero and villain characters for an upcoming game. I'm using a heavily adapted version of Champions - adapted to the point where it's really much more "inspired by"' than "adapted from" - that I first came up with more than 10 years ago. It's very light - the whole thing fits on one piece of 8.5x11 paper, although it does take up both sides. It's intended for convention play, where I want to be able to introduce the system to new players in a few minutes, and keep the rules out of the way of having fun. 

I call the system Threat or Menace, first because I think that's funny, and second because I'm trying to capture the feeling of superhero comics circa the 80s, when J. Jonah Jameson published the headline "Spider-Man: Threat or Menace?"

Emboldened by the example of +Rob Donoghue  and others, I may just go ahead and publish the system this time. It would be neat to get feedback on it. 
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This is amazingly geeky, and very very entertaining. A PhD candidate researcher in computer science is using a recurrent neural network to generate Magic: the Gathering cards. Many other people have joined in, and the networks are getting remarkably good at creating cards. 

http://www.mtgsalvation.com/forums/creativity/custom-card-creation/612057-generating-magic-cards-using-deep-recurrent-neural?
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Nice piece on the books that inspired 5th Edition D&D. I particularly like this, about +Saladin Ahmed's Throne of the Crescent Moon:

“A lot of the stuff behind bonds, flaws, all the stuff that binds characters to the campaign, was inspired by reading Throne.”

http://www.forbes.com/sites/davidewalt/2015/01/27/books-fiction-inspired-dungeons-dragons/
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+Fred Hicks , I was looking at your works list and noticed that the Hero Games store link is busted. I'm guessing they moved it. Correct link seems to be http://www.herogames.com/forums/store/
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+Harry Connolly , is there a forum for spoilery discussion of The Great Way? 
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