Flowcon SF 2014, September 3-4 San Francisco, California

Erik Sowa, VP Engineering ulive

Erik Sowa

Biography: Erik Sowa

Erik has been working in software development and operations for over 30 years, and has held roles ranging from computational physicist in the national laboratories to VP Engineering at ulive. Along the way he has come to appreciate flow principles, continuous delivery practices, and devops culture as key enablers of high-performance teamwork in rapidly changing environments. Erik has spoken at conferences on topics including “Feature Bits: Enabling Flow Within and Across Teams”, “Tweeting Through Space”, and “Conway’s Law for Executive Teams”.

Twitter: @eriksowa

Presentation: Front-End Ops and the OODA Loop: A Decision Cycle Time Strategy for Winning in a Hostile Internet Environment

Time: Wednesday 12:00 - 12:30 / Location: Metropolitan 3

Many organizations are using John Boyd’s OODA loop to describe business strategies driven by continuous innovation cycles and the supporting technical practices. In a hostile environment, whether it is a aerial dogfight or an advertising-supported internet business, survival itself depends on going around the observe-orient-decide-act loop faster than the threat. At Scripps Networks Interactive, we are doing online video syndication and we surely have to contend with a hostile environment. In this talk, I will discuss how we moved our decision cycle time from weeks to hours by instrumenting our embedded video player and using our data operating system to understand what is happening in the field. The emerging mindset and set of practices called “front-end ops” — which brings front-end work into the culture and practices of devops and continuous delivery as a first-class citizen — can be used to shorten the  cycle time through the OODA loop and increase the power of the actions we can take. Can we get the cycle time to minutes or even seconds? Let’s find out.