The Support Group Blog

Rich Coulombre

Recent Posts

How the Stages of Grief Relate to the Software Development Process

We develop custom business software solutions. Our job is to turn a customer’s business needs into functional, organized and attractive software solutions that improve their business operations. At the end of the day, our job is to make our clients look good inside their organizations.

At the heart of every software product is change. Once projects start to take form, our clients begin to see different possibilities and their minds fill with creative enhancements that will make their software even more valuable. We like when clients get excited about new possibilities, but it can also be difficult in terms of managing expectations.

It occurred to me that the process developers go through when faced with very difficult development challenges is much like the well-known stages of grief that psychologists describe. So here we go on the mental journey of almost every technical person faced with almost insurmountable client challenges.

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Siri Rocks!!!

Like a lot of people, I am the proud owner of a shiny new iPhone 4S.  Now, that may not sound unusual (I mean, Apple has sold MILLIONS), but the guys and gals I work with are saying “OMG!!!”

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Life Lessons: Backing Up

There’s an old adage that shows up in many forms:

Smart people learn from their own mistakes; really smart people learn from the mistakes of others.

I’d expand that to include learning from one’s successes and the successes of others, as I’ve endeavored to teach my children many times over.

I’ve been in this business over 25 years and worked at Apple for a few years before that. Over that time, I’ve seen a lot of interesting customer experiences, good and bad, with some providing major life lessons the hard way. Most of these are simple in nature but reinforce what many of us know intuitively. The stories I want to share today relate to backing up.

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"Why should a human do this when a computer can do it?”

Early in my FileMaker career, perhaps back in the first version of FileMaker, we were hired by a company selling and leasing commercial real estate.  The company’s database contained information on properties for sale and lease, completed transactions, and a variety of reports summarizing data by office, district, region, sales person, month and quarter.

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Aha!

I’m an old school guy.  I started with an Apple II Plus in 1980 with a text-based operating system, audio cassette player for storage and a whopping 4K of memory.  I thought I’d died and gone to heaven after purchasing a 5 1/4” floppy disk drive with an incredible 113K storage capacity.

I was the guy you read about staying up all night working away on some software or other.  I loved to program, and lived for that “Aha!” moment when the solution to a problem suddenly appeared.  Researchers have shown that the “Aha!” moment is associated with the release of neurotransmitters, including dopamine, serotonin, and an array of endorphins.  That feeling is real and something I lived for.

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