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PM's FAQ about System Engineering

Musings on Project Management

A lot of PMs know they need systems engineering, or think they might, but aren't sure who these folks are or what they do. Here's my FAQ I used when I was a Director for systems engineering for an aerospace and communications firm (And, I tried to make this not too stuffy!) What is this thing called system engineering? What is system engineering? Here's the way NASA defines it: " system engineering

Systems Engineering

Herding Cats

For non-trivial problems in any domain, Systems Engineering provides a starting framework for identifying problems, assessing possible solutions, implementing those solutions, measuring the performance of the efforts to deliver the solutions and the effectiveness of those solutions.

System Engineering FAQ

Musings on Project Management

A lot of PMs know they need systems engineering, or think they might, but aren't sure who these folks are or what they do. Here's my FAQ I used when I was a Director for systems engineering for an aerospace and communications firm (And, I tried to make this not to stuffy!) What is this thing called system engineering? What is system engineering? Here's the way NASA defines it: " system engineering

How Does the LiquidPlanner Scheduling Engine Work?


Here’s what makes LiquidPlanner different from other project management tools on our market: our scheduling engine. If you want more of the technical details, CTO and co-founder Jason Carlson talks about how the scheduling engine was built—in two takes, mind you!—and

Systems Engineering and Software Intensive System of Systems

Herding Cats

But in technical systems - engineered technical systems - the system has to work when commanded to do so. This is the domain of Systems Engineering, that many times is based on the principles of Ackoff and others like him. Systems Engineering: Coping with Complexity , Richard Stevens, Peter Brook, Ken Jackson, and Stuart Arnold. INCOSE Systems Engineering Handbook - membership needed. This is the professional society for Systems Engineers.

Against all odds – learning from great projectors: Ferdinand Zeppelin


Several industrial leaders supported his idea after a lecture on steerable airship designs given to the Association of German Engineers (VDI) in 1896. However, the engines were to weak and could not stand a longer flight.

Unravelling PI Planning


The PI Planning meeting is organized by the Release Train Engineer (RTE, also called the Scrum Master of the Agile Release Train). This is done by the Release Train Engineer after the PI Planning meeting is over and not during the meeting. • Img Src:

Actually, you can't measure it

Musings on Project Management

Or, you can measure anything -- everything Actually, you can't Measurements do the changing There are may project domains where measurements change the thing being measured, so that the results are incorrect, sometimes dramatically so: Many chemical reactions or chemistry attributes Some biological effects Most quantum effects Bayes decision deduction induction system engineeringWe're told repeatedly: you can't manage what you can't measure.

2016 10

About evidence

Musings on Project Management

estimate Quotations system engineeringDid you see this witicism at herdingcats? A skeptic will question claims, then embrace the evidence. A denier will question claims, then reject the evidence. Neil deGrase Tyson. Think of this whenever there is a conjecture that has no testable evidence of the claim. And think ever more when those making the conjectured claim refuse to provide evidence. When that is the case, it is.

2016 10

Thinking: it's about systems first

Musings on Project Management

planning system engineeringI've pointed to "Thinking in Systems: a primer" by D. Meadows in prior posts, and here I go again, largely because I think she's offered a lot that is useful to managers of all stripes, not just systems people. But, there's traps! Here's an abridged list of 'traps' she cautions against, a list of ills we should all be cautious about: Success to the successful If the winners of a.

2016 10

The requisite law of variety

Musings on Project Management

agile Risk Management system engineeringNow, this could be a bit stuffy: "The Requisite Law of Variety" But actually, it's an interesting concept to consider, to wit: Essential Elements (E): these are outcomes, results, or other artifacts that you want to have some control over, even if you are Agile Disturbances (D): these are events or actions that impact E. usually there are a lot of these! Regulation (R) or controls: these.

What is Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Jez Lister

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process that results in a website appearing higher up the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) on sites such as Google, Yahoo etc. This is also used in some search engines in the search results. Introduction.

Timing is not everything

Musings on Project Management

decision game theory Statistics system engineering"Just because something happens after something else happens doesn't mean it happens because something else happened Show me your data Show me your assumptions Tell me what questions you asked Tell me why you didn't ask other questions" From the TED Radio Hour, "Big Data". So, what we have here is the tyranny of the "Three Cs" * Coincidence, perhaps better written as co-incident to.

Weight of evidence

Musings on Project Management

Bayes decision risk decision system engineeringIf you are into risk assessments, you may find yourself evaluating the data Evaluating the data usually means testing its applicability with a hypothesis. The process usually cited in project management chapters about risk is this: A hypothesis is formed. And then the evidence against the hypothesis—observable data—is evaluated. If the evidence.

Fault and Root Cause Analysis

Musings on Project Management

Naturally, risk system engineeringFARCA -- Fault and Root Cause Analysis -- is what you do when you've got observations and symptoms of outcomes, but no real supporting explanation of the underlying causes and failure modes. Every PMO admonishes: Don't act on symptoms! Get to the 'facts'. Find out what's causing this And thus: deductive analysis*. When you've got the answer; now you must discover the question.

What is this Monte Carlo thing?

Musings on Project Management

Project Management Statistics system engineeringFor many years, I've preached the benefits of the Monte Carlo simulation (MCS). For many reasons, it's superior to other analysis paradigms. In network analysis, for instance, it handles the parallel join or 'gate' as no other method will. In fact, it's this very capability that renders the Monte Carlo superior to other risk adjusted ideas, like the PERT method in scheduling. PERT suffers.

The 15 commandments of safety-critical software

Musings on Project Management

Thou shalt adopt a fundamentally Project Management system engineeringThe following is borrowed unashamedly from Matthew Squair at Critical Uncertainties: "Herewith, are the 15 commandments for thine safety critical software as spoken by the machine god unto his prophet Hermann Kopetz. Thou shalt regard the system safety case as thy tabernacle of safety and derive thine critical software failure modes and requirements from it.

Lessons on architecture

Musings on Project Management

architecture system engineeringI love architecture, though I'm not an architect, and never studied architecture. Of course, I love system architecture, which is both different from building and construction per se, and identical -- because a building is a system, just as any other such integrated structure is a system. Frank Gehry is one of Canada-America's more esteemed architects. He does projects around the world.

Project Management CV – Writing in the First Person

Arras People

I have proven experience in the successful delivery of various projects across a number of industries including IT, Railway Engineering and Public Affairs.

Quote of the Day

Herding Cats

A New Engineering Profession is Emerging: Decision Coach," IEEE Engineering Management Review , Vol. If you can't explain what you are doing as a process, then you don't know what you are doing - Deming. Process is the answer to the question How do we do things around here?

2 ways to Perform Critical Path Analysis

PM by PM

Critical Path Analysis Using 0 and 1 Method I am a software engineer by education. I learned project management while managing software projects. I got introduced to MS Project and Critical Path Analysis in year 1997. In fact, I learned about Critical Path while using MS Project.

Tom Peters and Soft Skills

Zen Project Management

He began the talk with his experience coming out of college with an engineering degree. I recently had the opportunity to hear Tom Peters speak and I have to say that even at the age of 71, he still has a lot of energy and passion. He found the math and science classes did little to prepare him for the real world, the people part of the equation, or the “all important last 99%” of being successful.

2014 63

Estimating is a Learned Skill

Herding Cats

Believing is Seeing: Confirmation Bias Studies in Software Engineering, “Magne Jørgensen and Efi Papatheocharous, 41st Euromicro Conference on Software Engineering and Advanced Applications (SEAA). Release Planning & Buffered MoSCoW Rules,” Dr. Eduardo Miranda Institute for Software Research ASSE 2013 ‐ 14th Argentine Symposium on Software Engineering / 42 JAIIO (Argentine Conference on Informatics) September 16th, 2013, Cordoba, Argentina.

Advice – Downturn in the Oil & Gas Industry

Arras People

“ I’ve been working in the Oil and Gas industry for a while as a cost engineer but I’m concerned about the downturn in the industry. Any advice on how to make a move away from this industry?”

“When will this Software Project Ever Be Done?”


I recently attended a keynote from Sue Gardner, she was the executive director for WikiPedia as it rapidly grew from 8 to 200 engineers. Does this question sound familiar? If you get asked it regularly then you may be part of the mainstream transformation from software projects to products.

2017 85

Managing and working in Project Society


Examples of PBOs include consulting firms, creative and design agencies as well as architecture and civil engineering firms. Many surveys proof the fact, that we experience an increasing number and importance of projects in our society.

2020 79

Excellent Finalists and Winners of IPMA Awards 2016 have been decorated by IPMA


Bronze: SSR International Airport Expansion Project, China State Construction Engineering Corp. Managing projects and programs often means dealing with ever-increasing complexity and volatility.

2016 66

Podcast 76 – Tips for agile project management

Fix my Project Chaos

Let’s talk about: tips for agile project management Shane Hastie is Chief Knowledge Engineer & Agile Practise Lead at Software Education & specialises in agile practices, business analysis, project management, requirements and methodologies for Software Education in Australia, New Zealand and around the world.

Using Kanban in Marketing


Of course, we use Swiftkanban for prioritizing and working on specific marketing deliverables, as also to collaborate with other functions such as UI and Engineering! Marketing depends on a number of other functions such as UI/ UX, Engineering and Sales for planning and doing its work.

Against all odds – learning from great projectors: Daedalus and Icarus


The name “Daedalus” refers to what we nowadays call an “Engineer”. Thus, analyse the risks and stick to the advice given by the “engineers” who know best the limitations of their inventions. With this article we continue a series of pioneers and projectors to learn from.

Starting a Young Crew in Algeria with IPMA TAP-Training Aid Programme


Secondly, the contextual competences such as stake-holder management or the consideration of the financial and legal framework are often neglected in the PM approach, especially in universities and engineering schools.

2020 44

From Toyota, to AirBus, to Wrike: The Lean Journey of Errette Dunn

PM for the Masses

Some start in Engineering school, others have degrees in […]. Some start in Engineering school, others have degrees in […] Interviews Podcast Soft SkillsAs the host of the Project Management for the Masses Podcast, I get to know a LOT of people in the PM industry. One thing that always amazes me is to learn about the journey that each professional goes through to get to where they are.

2015 23

Projects and project management in China


It is the largest manufacturing economy of the world, manufacturing goods such as cars, ships, aircrafts, consumer electronics, food, agricultural products, machinery and heavy engineering. The People´s Republic of China has a population of over 1.4

2022 74

Software Development Process Improvement Opportunities

Herding Cats

Intentional Disregard for Good Engineering Practices? When we hear about all the suggested ways to improve the effectiveness of our development effort, if we're to going work on improvements, let's go where the REAL money is. . Here's the IT budget for the Federal Government.

Product Management 101: How to Become a Product Manager


Product managers are all former engineers. Product managers work closely with anyone from engineering to finance to marketing, depending on the current stage of the product lifecycle. Stop me if you’ve heard this before: .

Empathy and Respect: What Makes Teams Great

Pawel Brodzinski

As a matter of fact, enough fluency with engineering is something we validate first when we hire at Lunar Logic. I’ve been known to bring up research on collective intelligence in many situations, e.g. here , here , or here.

Why Johnny Can't Estimate?

Herding Cats

I work in a domain where engineered systems are developed for complex software-intensive system of systems. These systems are engineered with a variety of development methods. This would be like saying, risk management is a waste , control system engineering is a waste, thermal analysis of the computer system is a waste, assessment of the reliability, repairable, survivability - all the. Mine is in hard science and systems engineering.

Lean Project Management – old wine in new bottles or a real gain?


Building on Taylor and Ford, the Lean Principles emerged at Toyota and were used as a holistic concept, first in manufacturing , later also in other functions such as engineering, services and administration.

Lean 84

PM 101 – Working With Marketing

The Clever PM

We’ve already touched on the importance of working with Designers and Sales — and UserVoice gave me an opportunity to discuss working with Engineers — so today we’re going to continue the logical progression of teams that a Product Manager must have good relationships with by talking about the proper care and feeding of your Marketing teams.

The Bad Apple Syndrome in Process Improvement

Herding Cats

Long ago a very senior piping engineer on a multi-billion refinery piping design system, asked us software weenies . One of the engineers for the product we were using (Evans and Sutherland Picture System) went on to found Adobe.