Hughes Blog
Thoughts on Software Development, Project Management, Parenting, and Running.
Friday, June 30, 2006
June Workouts
First Week of June
Run - 0 Miles
Bike - 17.2 miles
Swim - 1000 Meters

Second Week of June
Run - 0 Miles
Bike - 70.3 Miles
Swim - 5500 Meters

Third Week of June
Run - 0 Miles
Bike - 111.5 Miles
Swim - 2500 Meters

Fourth Week of June
Run - 0 Miles
Bike - 136.3 Miles
Swim - 4500 Meters

June 26 - 1000 Meters Swim
June 28 - 13.3 Miles Bike (Lemond Trainer)

Total For June:
Run - 0 Miles
Bike - 348.6
Swim - 14500

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Tuesday, June 27, 2006
Workout Notes Week Ending June 25
Monday - Nothing
Tuesday - 30 minutes LeMond RevMaster 8mli 100 RPM Ave Cad. 115 mph Ave Velocity
Wednesday - 3x500 + 5x100 Swim
Thursday - 45 min LeMond RevMaster 13.3 miles 113 RPM Ave Cad. 117 MPH Ave Velocity
Friday - 4x500m + 5x100m Swim - 1 hour
Saturday - 85 Miles on the Cannondale
Sunday - 30 Miles on the Cannondale

Total For Week:
Bike: 136.3 Miles
Swim: 4500 Meters

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Sunday, June 25, 2006
Sunday Ride
Terry called last night. He just got back from Weatherford OK, where he had participated in a sprint triathalon. Terry suggested an easy ride for Sunday Morning. Given that I was likely to be splattered from my 85 miles yesterday, I thought easy and short would be good.

So we agreed he'd ride out to my house arrving around 0620.

Which is exactly what happenned. Terry brough his neighbor, who's name I could barely pronounce, much less spell. We had a pretty easy ride out Rowlett and back. Nothing eventful to report.

Distance: 30.06 Miles
Max Velocity: 30.6 MPH
Ave Velocity: 16.6 MPH (and that was with no wind. Like I said, Easy.)
Duration: 1:48:37
Ave HR: 133 BPM
Max HR: 160 BPM

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Saturday, June 24, 2006
Smile!
I forgot to mention, that this past thursday, removed the braces from my teeth! It took me less than two seconds to get some bubble going. Eating is fun again. 20 months of torture is now over.


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85 Freaking Miles...
...on the bike. Today. A record for me. Shattering my previous record of sixty miles.

I left the house at 0630. I figured I'd hook up with Scotts group, Scott being the yahoo I met last week on the RBM Ride. I headed west on Renner Road, and did not get very far when I saw them coming. I did a U turn and hooked up. Fran gave me strict orders to be home at 0930. That meant I had time to do the loop with Scotts guys and maybe ride all the way back to RBM - but there was no way that would be able to head out with the Big Dog Group and get home in time.

Indeed we got back to RBM at 0845 and I rode back home solo arriving with 50 miles on the odometer at around 0920 or so. Then Fran told me that Joe canceled Marissa's practice. That meant that I did not need to be home. That also meant if I hurried I could catch the big dogs for the big dog ride.

As I approached Renner Road from the house a group of them went by. It was not the Big Dog group - it was the Nearly Big Dog group that I rode with last week. Once more I was behind them and it took me a couple of miles before I finally caught them at the light on 78.

I was totally out of place in the group. As I was riding up 78, one of dudes was yelling at me to tuck in closer to the dude in front of me. Finally he came up, put his hand on my ass (hey!) and pushed me right in behind the guy in front of me. He was like, "stay tucked in and let the draft suck you along." Right.

A bit later, I found myself at the front of the pack. It was my turn to pull, so I was hammering along - except I everyone else was going slower. Crap. Now I was dead. The same dude was like, "Don't gap out in front when you have the lead." Right. Except I am not sure I really have that bit figured out.

Bikers have too many rules.

I was able to stay with them almost to the end of the ride. But when the odometer hit 70 miles, that was it - I was toast. I took it very easy for the three miles to RBM. My camelback was empty - so I went inside and got a gatorade and a powerbar. I sat down in the shade and ate the power bar and killed the Gatorade! I got a second Gatorade and loaded that back in to the camelback for the 10 miles I still needed to get home!

On the ride home another guy named Herb came up and suggested that we do 20-21 for ride down Renner. Right. I kept up pretty good, but got clobbered on two of the big hills!

Anyway - I am totally amazed that I survived.

Stats:
Distance: 85.1 Miles
Max Velocity: 32.5 MPH
Ave Velocity: 18.5 MPH
Duration: 4:35:53
Ave HR first 50: 145 BPM
Max HR first 50:
Ave HR last 35: 171 BPM
Max HR last 35: 192 BPM

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Thursday, June 22, 2006
Who counts by fifteen?
Like my friend I have a non-tennis tennis elbow. Which got me to thinking about the reasons why I don't play tennis. After all both my parents love the game. I was introduced to the game a young age. And it was only today that I came to grips as to why it didn't take hold.

You see I am a math person. My degree is in Mathematics. Tennis scoring does not follow any common rule of mathematics. 15-30-40? What the heck is that? Who counts by 15? And if you are gonna count by 15 then please make the scoring work 15-30-45. It simply does not make any sense. Why not count the points by 1? You need at least four points to win a game and you have to win by at least one point. Why not that?

Tennis scoring made my eight year old mathematically inclined brain hurt. It caused me cognitive dissonance.

So I quit.

And have never played since.

In spite of the fact that I enjoy watching the game.

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Tuesday, June 20, 2006
Freeway 2.0 - Just Another Roach Motel
Recently I was approached by an overzealous sales yahoo from Lionbridge. I am pretty sure that this dude had gotten wind that BMC was in the market for a Global Content Management system. He was trying to use me as a back door to the decision makers so that he could pitch his product .

Freeway is a pretty cool product from what I can tell. It allows online management of content and facilitates translation of content between the publisher and the translators. However, Freeway has one fatal flaw. Its a Roach Motel. Here are some nuggets straight from the website:

Access to Freeway’s collaboration features and language technology is free for Lionbridge clients and translators.


And if you look at the terms of use:

1.1 The Site is a communications medium by which clients can have access to and use Services offered by Lionbridge.


That approach is so old it is pre Web 1.0! Gimme a break! The sales dude initally pitched this to me as a "Free" SAAS offering "like Salesforce.com". Again its a cool product, but it ain't nothing like salesforce.com. And like the terms of use state - this roach motel is simply a communications medium. Until Lionbridge wake up and smell the coffee, this is never going to evolve to be a kick ass service offering. A real shame.

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Sunday, June 18, 2006
Workout Notes Week Ending June 18
Monday and Tuesday - Nothing. Insanity at work.
Wednesday - 30 minutes LeMond RevMaster 9.3mi 18mph AVE Velocity 118RPM AVE Cadence
Thursday - 30 minutes LeMond RevMaster 9.2 miles
Friday - 4x500m + 5x100m Swim - 1 hour
Saturday - 52 Miles on the Cannondale
Sunday - 41 miles on the Cannondale

Total For Week:
Bike: 111.5 Miles
Swim: 2500 Meters

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Sunday Ride with Terry
Last night, as I was trying to recover from my ride with the Big Dogs, Terry called and suggested that we do a ride similar to the route that I took last week over to Rockwall. Terry suggested a 0550 departure from my house. I figured, what the heck - so I agreed.

Terry's route was the opposite direction of what I did. My route was counter clockwise around the lake, where Terry wanted to go clockwise. We headed west on 78 and took a right on 205 over to 66 and back. The roads were a little wet from the thunder storms that blew through here last night - but not too slick. In a weird quirk of weather we had a strong south wind as we headed south. But when we turned north, so did the wind. It was in our face the whole ride. Exhausting!

As we were riding across the lake we came upon a guy off his bike with a flat. I asked if he needed help and indeed he did need help. He reported that he had purchased his bike yesterday and he was not able to inflate the tire. He had a CO2 inflator in his hand, but apparently he somehow messed it up. As reported previously I am now an EXPERT in CO2 tire inflation. I still had one can in my pouch. So I inflated his tire. And for the very first time ever, I did not feel like the complete bike rookie that I am. :-)

Stats:
Distance: 41 Miles
Max Velocity: 30.1 MPH
Ave Velocity: 17.5 MPH
Duration: 2:20 Minutes
Ave HR: 137 BPM
Max HR: 152 BPM

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Saturday, June 17, 2006
Still Pretty Much of an Idiot when it comes to the Bike
Last night I got online to see if there was a race of some sort I might do this morning because there were no AM soccer games! There was not much in terms of swimming. The was a Duathalon down at White Rock Lake at 0730. But that has two - two mile runs. I coulda done that and I was tempted. Then I checked out the from . Now those looked interesting. But ya know I have never riden in a group larger than me and Terry. And I a totally dweeb when it comes to the bike. And which freakin group should I hook up with? And what if I fall over? It could happen!

Those were some of the thoughts blasting through my head when I set out from my house this morning. I figured I'd ride over to RBM. Did you know that RBM was Lance's first sponsor? Yes that RBM. These dudes are serious. Its something like 8 miles from my house to RBM. So I left a bit after 8:00am and rode over there. The east-west rides come right by my house. The 47 mile ride looked good distance wise, and I could dump out at my house on the way back. But those dudes average 20-21 MPH. I have never averaged that pace. But in a group - would it be different? Ya know if I get dropped so what, I could fall back to the next group or finish solo.

As I pulled out on Renner Road on my way to RBM, there was a guy on a bike heading my direction. After a couple of miles he caught up to me. His name was Scott and he was like 10 feet tall. He was on an absolutely huge bike. Scott told me he was also heading to RBM. He was finishing up the 47 mile loop that he started at 0600 and then he was going to do it again with the group. I told you these guys are serious. And of course I am kinding asking him if the pace is gonna kill me. And he is kinda not really saying anything - which is smart - thats what I would do. I would not want any blame for blowing up a newbie. He is like,"how long you been riding?" Which I figure is dumb question since I am wearing my 15 dollar Wal-mart helmet; a singlet; and lets not forget my 'dangerously" wired 15 dollar GT bike computer. Pretty much I am screaming rookie. Oh yeah and I was also jamming out with the ipod. So I tell Scott - six months. But Scott told me that I was welcome to hook with his 0600 group any time. So I might do that. Scott was wearing team colors. PCM is where I bought my bike. Terry says PCM is the anti RBM bike shop - whatever that means. I figure the PCM dudes are cooler than the RBM dudes.

Scott and I arrived at RBM at like 0840. The killer group was scheduled to depart at 0905. I went into RBM and got me some Mocha Gel stuff. In all the years that I ran Marathons - I never ever took a gel. But I only had a Red Bull before heading out this morning and if I was going to hang with the maniacs, I figured I needed something for an edge. I went back outside and sat down on a bench and consumed the gel. As I was sitting there another dude rode up and was like "Chris?". Hot dog! Someone I knew! It was another permenantly-barred-from running, and former-member-of-my-running-group - none other than Mr. Dave DeSosa! (Check out Dave's 2:05 800m and my 4:30 1500m time here. Those were the days.)

So Dave and I talked. Dave usually goes out with the slower group. But today he was going to run with the big dogs. That was perfect for me - since I had already stupidly talked myself into that group as well! Dave was a bit concerned about my ability to keep up. But I had pretty much made up my mind. Big Dogs or die trying!

So off we we went. Did I mention I have NEVER ridden in group before? So I get on the back of the pack along with Dave. It was then that I learned lesson #1. These dudes rocket from a dead stop and if you fall off the back its a bitch getting caught up. So it took a couple of stops for me to get with that program. Once I figured that out I was cool, but as I rocketed up from the start I was no longer in the back of the pack. Now that was scary. Overall things were good. Dave said as soon as we got out in the boonies, these guys would drop the hammer. Whatever. We'll just deal with that when the time comes.

I hung with the group for about six miles or so. Until we got to SH190, AKA The Bush. We hit the light there. When I did the rocket manuever I heard - Pthphthphth. That could mean only one thing. A flat tire. BTW in the exact location where McGehee split his head open! This was probably a sign from the good lord that I should not be riding with the Big Dogs. Also this represents another strike against Terry - who recommened these super duper no flat tires.

I am getting pretty damn good a repairing a flat. Frankly its a skill that I'd rather not be the expert. The 18MPH pace RBM group leaves five minutes later than the Big Dog group. The dogs are faster - so I had something more that five minutes before the next group would come along. I had the tube on and was getting the tire back on the rim when the next group went by. BTW I had picked up a staple through the sidewall. I got the bike together and started to chase the Not Quite Big Dog group.

One problem that I had was that I only had a vague idea of the route that they were taking. So I figured worse case, if I did not catch the Not Quite Big Dog group and maybe even if I did catch them, I might double back and try to pick up the Big Dog group. Anyway when I got to Sachse, I saw some riders heading out on 78. I figured I'd head to Miles Road. I thought I saw another guy going that way. And he went that way but he did not turn on Miles. He kept going north down a road I was not familiar with. What the heck. I kept following that guy and low and behold I went right by the RBM Not Quite Big Dog group who were waiting to turn on the road I was on. And they were coming my direction. I was in front of them though! Acckkkk. It had taken me about ten miles of hard riding to get caught back up. I was a bit bushwhacked at that point.

We were coming to an intersection so I waved trying to figure out if I should turn. Indeed they all started screaming RIGHT! Excellent. I hooked the right hand turn, and there were a buncha riders from the Big Dog group waiting there. Including Mr. DeSosa! Apparently if you get dumped from the Big Dogs - this intersection is where you catch the next group. So now I was back in the pack and hanging pretty good. We did a big loop of Sachse, and as we headed back to Richardson - I got dropped. Dave helped me work back. Then I got dropped again. I was toast. Eventually a group of about six of us formed and we headed back to RBM.

I found Dave. He told me he got dropped from the fast group. He told me that I did well under the circumstances. Still I feel like a complete rookie and am in WAY over my head!

The Stats:
Distance: 52.756 Miles
Max Velocity 34.5 MPH
Ave Velocity 18.7 MPH
Duration 2:49
Ave HR 168 BPM
Max HR 192 BPM :-)

My HR profile will qwell any doubts that I was working hard today:





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Thursday, June 15, 2006
Logan Scores the winning goal!
I have not posted about the kids soccer recently. A LOT has changed!

Reagan is playing on an indoor team with . Her first game was saturday and they managed a win!

had their last games of the year at a tournement in Houston two weeks ago. They played four cames and came away with two wins, a draw and a loss. There are no more games until July. Between now and then Marissa will need to sign a new contract. Lets hope it goes smoother than last year. Marissa plans to play for the Texans again next year. Coach Joe says she will get a contract. So if all of that plays out, then we just need to make sure that they get enough players to make a team.

Now on to Miss Logan. She was not pleased with Coach Dave at Superblue. I convinced Coach Don to let Logan play a year up with the 98 girls. That plan got blown up when Don was offered a spot coaching the Sting 96 Girls team. Which led him to hand off the 98s to another coach. That was not going to work for Logan!

In the mean time we had been bringing Logan out to to play with She just loves Mike. So when the plan with Superblue blew up we hooked up with Andromeda.

She played the first game with Andromeda while we were in Houston - so I did not get to see her play with them. Then last Saturday, her team notched a win. Logan played hard, was having fun and clearly was earning the respect of her coach. She had a game this afternoon and I caught the second half. She played keeper in the first half and according to reports had some great saves. In the second half she played forward most of the game. She scored the winning goal of the game and then had an assist for the insurance goal! She is really having fun which is great to see because that was not case under coach Dave.

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Wednesday, June 14, 2006
More on what it means to be Agile
The thing that I love about Scrum is that we use the software to tell us the state of project. Sure we track some metrics, like the sprint burndown chart (below). But the thing that tells us where we are and therefore what needs to be done next is the state of the software.



On our current project we have just completed reworking the entire presentation layer. This was a massive effort and the software is telling us that our work is not yet done. This makes my job as a project leader easier. Instead of having to deal with reworking a big huge hairy project plan, I can simply advocate the correct course of action for the next sprint based on what the software is telling me. In our case that means we will be spending time running through test cases and getting the code whipped back into shape!

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Sunday, June 11, 2006
Workout Notes Two Weeks Ending June 11
Week of May 29

Monday: Memorial Day 50 Miles on the Cannondale.
Tuesday: 16 Minutes on the LeMond RevMaster (4.6 Mi.), 1500 meters in the pool (2x500, 10x50).
Wednesday: 41 Minutes on the LeMond RevMaster (13 Mi).
Friday: 15 minutes on the RevMaster (4.2 Mi.) 1000 meters in the pool (2x500).
Saturday: 31 Minutes on the Lifecycle (13 Mi.)

Total for week: Swim - 2500 Meters; Bike 85.5 Miles

Week of June 5

Tuesday: 15 minutes on the RevMaster (4.3 Mi.); 1000 meters in the pool (2x500)
Wednesday: 45 minutes on the RevMaster (13 mi.)
Thursday: 2000 Meters in the pool (4x 500)
Friday: 45 minutes on the RevMaster (13 mi.)
Saturday: 2500 Meters in the pool (5x500)
Sunday: 40 miles on the Cannondale

Total for week: Swim 5500 Meters; Bike: 70.3 Miles

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Long Sunday Ride
Terry is off in Oklahoma doing a triathalon, so that left me solo for a long ride this morning. There was another strong south wind this morning. So I took the usual route through Wiley and Rowlett. Instead of coming back the usual way, I decided to head across Lake Ray Hubbard along the route I speculated several weeks ago. It worked our really well. The 66 bridge across the lake has a nice wide shoulder. And there is some good rolling terrain in Rockwall. Coming back along the 205 with the wind behind me was amazing. I was rolling along at almost 30MPH on the flats and even in low gear up hill I was hammering 20 MPH! GMAP here.

Here are the stats:

Distance: 40.04 Miles
Max Velocity: 38.3 MPH
Ave Velocity: 18.9 MPH
Time: 2:07:09
Ave HR: 155 BPM
Max HR: 177 BPM





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The Fledge Emerge
Hey! Where are the bugs. I'm hungry....

TwoFledge
Much Better...
Chowmein

Thank you daddy!


Update May 20, 2007 - Fixed the damn photos.


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Saturday, June 10, 2006
A long sad tale of woe....
This is the long stupid post that I never get around to writing. For a time it was was denial that kept me from publishing this post. Anyway, there is no getting around it....

I have not run competitively in a year.

Actually it will be a year on the 18th. BTW, those results are incorrect. They got the times mixed up. I had the 2:25 (and witnesses.) Anyway, at that meet, Lindsay checked my SI. She did not need to check it because like I said I had been in denail. But I knew the SI was rotated because my left shoes had been wearing down abnormially quicker compared to the right. I just never wanted to admit it. But at that moment there was no getting around it. I needed to get my butt repaired.

I scheduled an appointment with Dr. Christopher Garrison at the Baylor Landry Center. I told Garrison what the problem was and that I needed PT and that I wanted a prescrition so that I could see Dale Smith. Dale is the best PT in the world for this problem. He also understands runners, as he was Michael Johnson and is Jeremy Warnier's PT!

Sadly Dale was out of the country when I needed him, so instead I went to see Francie, his partner. Francie and worked on the hip from August until October, when it finally stabilized. At that time I did start jogging easy on the grass, as reported here and throughout the procedure I started biking and swimming. The SI was stable, but the pain and inflamation never went away.

Then in February it was off to India. Fourty hours in coach. That trip sent the SI back over the deep end and out of whack. I needed a prescrition to get back to see Francie, which meant another trip to Garrison. Except he did not show. So I fired Garrison and hired a new Physiatrist, Dr. Jim Sterling at Presbyterian Hospital. Sterling is the head physician for the US Winter Olympic Team. Gotta wonder about his selection to that post what with his DALLAS location and all!

Sterling got me back in to see Francie. She got the SI stabilized in a week. Sterling told me no more running until we got it under control. He took an XRAY of my hip (not the SI apparently). And he ordered two MRI's one of my back and one of my hip (not the SI.) Sterling was VERY pleased with how my back looked. "For a guy like you who has run as much as you have, your back is in EXCELLENT shape." Great - lets get the pain in my ass dealt with please.

So I got Sterling to put me on Lodine - which helped a bit, but still has not whipped the problem. Sterling is recommending a Cortisone shot. However, before he pulled the trigger on that he sent me to see Fleischmann to rule out Ankylosing Spondylitis(AS).

So thats pretty much the tale of woe. No running. Pain in ass. The week after next I see Sterling and Flieschmann again. I checked with Coach Vaughan, and he was not a fan of the Cortisone shot. I think Sterling screwed up by not doing an MRI (and XRAYS) of the SI. So I think an MRI and possibly a bone scan are in order before doing anything else. Oh yeah, Its still possible it could be AS, which in some ways would be a relief - at least I would know what it was and then I could run and deal with it. BTW, running does not cause any additional pain, in fact it usually feels better when I run! :-)


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Adoption
OK so I am a bit late with this post. :-P

For Mothers Day Fran suggested that we adopt a new member of the family.

This is NewCat (in jail before the rescue), who now can keep OldCat (who was also rescued from the same place) company!



Friday, June 09, 2006
Martins and Progress on the war on Terror
Here are some photos of the babies! There are six of them. A second pair of Martins are caring for four eggs. And I now have a third pair of Martins that have yet to lay any eggs.

Fledge

Fledge2

Now them babies need a lot of bugs to keep them going. And did I mention that there are six of them?

Dragonfly

dragonfly2


The Sparrows will kill the babies. So having become desperate I purchased a Gamo Air Rifle. This next photo may be disturbing to some of you.

Sparrow

We also have a dove sitting on two eggs and a mockingbird sitting on three eggs!

Update May 20, 2007 - Fixed all the damn photos - uploaded them to Flickr and changed the links.

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Monday, June 05, 2006
Agile Teams
My team has been leading the charge with Agile Software Development. When I came to BMC, our group was using a Feature Driven Waterfall methodology. Since August I have been attempting get folks on board with an Agile-Scrum methodology. While management is basically supportive, sometimes they don't really "get it".

Scrum is based on empowering people to excel as part of a team. Many times in a waterfall driven development organization one finds that the oranganizational silo own part of the process. For example, the QA team or the Doc team has their role, which they define and execute against. They define the API's, if you will, between their silos and the other organizational silos like engineering. Scrum is about working as a single team with a single missions and getting team members to commit to thier mission and the overall goal regardless of their specialty. Instead of defining an API layer for the interface to their group, its more like subclassing thier skill into the project team.

In a scrum environment teams commit to a sprint which is a short fixed duration effort. During a sprint the team defines goals and works to complete those goals.

Today I discover that our QA silo had decided to "redeploy" some of the team members who had been working on our sprint. One of the nice things about scrum is that sprints are SHORT. The current sprint will end in two weeks. If the management of the QA silo desires to screw with the team assignments, please wait until the end of the sprint!



All views expressed in this post and on this blog are my own. None of my comments should be construed to represent the views of others including and not limited to: BMC Software Inc., Corel Corporation, Dun and Bradstreet and AC Nielsen. Copyright Chris Hughes 2004-2012