Agile Programming for Your Family? Bruce Feiler says Yes!

I became an advocate for continuous improvement when I discovered that when we improve processes, we also improve people’s lives. Bruce Feiler’s TED Talk on agile families is well worth your time. I regret that I did not use these techniques when my daughters were younger, but I can certainly spread the message, starting NOW!
bh 2014/10/17

Bruce Feiler has a radical idea: To deal with the stress of modern family life, go agile. Inspired by agile software programming, Feiler introduces family practices which encourage flexibility, bottom-up idea flow, constant feedback and accountability. One surprising feature: Kids pick their own punishments.

Bruce Feiler: Agile programming — for your family 

Bruce Feiler, Writer
Bruce Feiler is the author of “The Secrets of Happy Families,” and the writer/presenter of the PBS miniseries “Walking the Bible.” Full bio

The Agile Family?

Yesterday’s “This will never work” becomes today’s “Wow! Why didn’t we think of this before?!” In the 80’s we heard that Toyota’s management practices will never work in the US. Toyota (and many others) went on to demonstrate how American workers were perfect for the Toyota Production System (known generically as ‘lean’). Then we heard that “Lean works in manufacturing, but it will never work in a human process.” Then a group of tech guys in 2001 got together and agreed on the Agile Manifesto. In this TED Talk, Bruce Feiler tells how he’s adapted Agile concepts to his household routine.

Statistical Speech Construction

This is fun… Sebastian Wernicke analyzed the statistics from previous TED talks, and uses his time to help us construct the perfect TED presentation, (including suggestions for the length of our talk, what to wear, and what colors are best to use). It’s a fun way to see how statistics can help us draw silly conclusions.

Lying with TED Statistics

Can Software Development Be Agile & Autonomous?

Those of us who work in the software development world are familiar with the term ‘agile’. But for us, this term is related to the Agile Manifesto. In Vijay Kuman’s TED talk, he speaks about ‘agile autonomous’ robots. He shows that decentralized control, local information, and anonymity work in this physical world. I wonder if we could use the same principles. He notes that the larger you make the quadrotor copter, the more inertia you have and the less agile it is.  Hmmm… that sounds awfully familiar.

About this video: In his lab at Penn, Vijay Kumar and his team build flying quadrotors, small, agile robots that swarm, sense each other, and form ad hoc teams — for construction, surveying disasters and far more. At the University of Pennsylvania, Vijay Kumar studies the control and coordination of multi-robot formations.

You Don’t Understand Third World Problems

First World= Small Family and Long Life Expectancy by contrast, Third World= Large Family and Short Life Expectancy

In 1964, United States had Small Families and Long Life Expectancy and as we might expect, Viet Nam had Large Families and Short Life Expectancy. But things changed. In 2003, United States still had Small Families and Long Life Expectancy, but Viet Nam had caught up. In 2003, Viet Nam’s Family Size and Life Expectancy were identical to the U.S. Rates in 1974 at the end of the Viet Nam Conflict.

from TED, posted on the website

Fear of Failure and How It Kills Innovation

This is a TED talk from Regina Dugan that begins with her asking, “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?”

She directs the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the DoD innovation engine responsible for creating and preventing strategic surprise. “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?” asks Regina Dugan, then director of DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. In this breathtaking talk she describes some of the extraordinary projects — a robotic hummingbird, a prosthetic arm controlled by thought, and, well, the internet — that her agency has created by not worrying that they might fail. (Followed by a Q&A with TED’s Chris Anderson)