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Thursday, April 30 • 11:00am - 12:30pm
My Silver Toolbox

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A few years ago, I started ending my presentations and workshops with the phrase “I hope that this is another tool you can put in your silver toolbox.” The idea of the “silver toolbox” comes from a 2009 quote from Mel Rosso-Llopart of Carnegie Mellon University: “I can’t give you a silver bullet, but I can give you a silver toolbox!” I doubt Mel even remembers saying this. It was in the middle of a random lecture during the TSPi course he teaches—but I do remember. And that simple phrase concisely describes my entire approach to adopting and teaching software engineering methods and practices.

When I travel on-site with a customer, I always bring a “coach’s bag”—a cheap Vivisimo handbag filled with various tools I nearly always need to facilitate workshops, enhance ad hoc design sessions, create documentation, or generally improve discussions. In my mind, I keep a tool kit of experiences—methods, bits of knowledge, nuggets of wisdom, strategies, and catch phrases.

These are the tools I have in my “Silver Toolbox.” What’s in yours? Join me along with Simon Brown, Will Chaparro, George Fairbanks, Ari Font, and Gail Harris as we explore some of the tools of the trade and learn what it takes to be a software architect.

avatar for Michael Keeling

Michael Keeling

Software Engineer, Watson, IBM
Michael Keeling is a software engineer at IBM, where he helps build Watson and has worked in the software industry for over a decade. He is the author of the forthcoming book Design It! From Programmer to Software Architect, now available in Beta. Keeling has a Master of Science in Software Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the College of William and Mary... Read More →

avatar for Simon Brown

Simon Brown

Coding the Architecture
Simon Brown is an independent consultant who helps organizations build better software by adopting a lightweight, pragmatic approach to software architecture. He is the creator of the C4 software architecture model and the author of Software Architecture for Developers, a developer-friendly... Read More →
avatar for Will Chaparro

Will Chaparro

IBM Watson Group
Will Chaparro is a development manager at The IBM Watson Group who has spent over 5 years designing and building complex enterprise search solutions for organizations. He also spent 11 years as a software engineer designing and implementing scalable audio-conferencing solutions for... Read More →
avatar for George Fairbanks

George Fairbanks

George Fairbanks has been teaching software architecture and design since 1998, is the author of the book Just Enough Software Architecture, has a PhD in Software Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, and is a software engineer at Google.
avatar for Gail E. Harris

Gail E. Harris

Gail Harris is the director and architect of web and mobile delivery at TVOntario (TVO), Ontario's public educational media organization. Gail oversees all technical and operational aspects of TVO's web and mobile presence, long-term technology strategy, development methods, and software... Read More →

Thursday April 30, 2015 11:00am - 12:30pm
2. Salon D

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