What Works – Increasing Code Quality While Staying Lean

Update: the video of this session has been posted. And we’ve started to publish the original blog posts this was based on, along with things we’ve learned since: What Works.


A big thanks to everyone who came to my DevCon session, and especially to those who asked questions! It was great getting to share some of the things that have made a big difference for SeedCode–I really hope you found it useful.

As I mentioned in the intro, this came out of a series of blog posts we wrote as KC was joining the company. We wanted to capture what was unique here (and what was working) so that we could pass that on to him, and we ended up with this pretty cool playbook for how we go fast. A recording of the session should be up soon. In the meantime, you can find the slides on the FileMaker Community or on Slideshare.

Here’s the way the talk was described on the conference site

Session Description

FileMaker lets you build new apps quickly and modify existing solutions just as fast. But if you’re occasionally missing deadlines, accumulating unbillable work or shipping bugs, you’ll learn six techniques to dramatically increase quality while working quickly.

In this session, learn what’s proven to work for SeedCode when delivering both large custom projects, as well as quick little mods. Importantly, these are techniques you can implement without hiring new staff and without slowing down.

Recommended Background

This is a not a technical session, and the techniques here apply to in-house developers, solo developers, and folks running larger firms. In fact the smaller you are, the more impact these kinds of efficiencies can make.

Session Objectives

• Break deliveries into smaller pieces to reduce the cognitive load (and risk) for developers AND customers

• How recording short (< 3 minute) videos makes the mental shift necessary for QA while reducing turnaround time for customers validating your work

• Simple strategies for recording “technical debt” as you go, so you can jump into cold projects much more quickly.

• Why documenting your dev decisions creates a path from the customer’s use cases to the code that addresses them


Update: Video Posted

FileMaker posted a recording of the session here. The video doens’t show me (thankfully) just the screen and audio, but it works. Enjoy!

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4 Comments

  • Dan Shockley

    I believe this session will have the most dramatic impact on improving our team’s work. One of the best sessions at DevCon this year. Thanks for making the materials available, and I’m looking forward to having the video so the rest of my team can see it.

  • I’m sure all will become clear when the Devcon video is available, but I’m a little impatient. This looks like an excellent session and I wish I could have seen it. Can you offer any more details on the video portion of the discussion? Are they stored in the client’s solution? Do you put the on the web somewhere (Unlisted YouTube perhaps)? I used the method one time and found it helpful, but at your suggestion I’m considering making it a practice. Many thanks!

    • seedcode

      Thanks for asking. The videos are short: 3-5 minutes. The app we use to record uploads them to our server automatically at the end of recording, so it’s super easy for us. (The videos are public but with an obscuring url.) We then email the video to the client along with a short note. For recording we use http://screencast-o-matic.com and https://www.monosnap.com/
      Hope that helps!

  • Damian

    Feeling guilty about almost doing something ‘more technical’ on what was actually the most important session from Devcon. Our in house bug tracking piece of c* is now on the way to the bin.

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