Developer productivity – you’ve got mail

on Jun 3, 10 • by Alen Zukich • with No Comments

A while back, I talked about how I keep running into organizations that seem to go out of their way to make developers’ lives hell.  I’ve run into several examples where developers had to switch between different environments just to write and compile code.  That’s as productive as watching paint...

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A while back, I talked about how I keep running into organizations that seem to go out of their way to make developers’ lives hell.  I’ve run into several examples where developers had to switch between different environments just to write and compile code.  That’s as productive as watching paint dry and as much fun as rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

For teams that want to run source code analysis in these types of environments (or any kind of dev tooling, frankly)  it’s very difficult for vendors to support.  I did my usual PM grumbling about these environments but since that post exactly 1 year ago I’ve come to realize that these environments are a reality and we need to figure out a way to support them.  Maybe it’s not productive but organizations are making it work.  I’m sure they would even argue that they have made it productive (good luck to them).  It’s for this reason that Klocwork has given in and instead of pointing our finger and making fun (I swear I never did), we’ve decided that it’s in our best interest to make sure we provide these customers with the capability to run static analysis.

A couple of releases ago, Klocwork introduced a new tool called Klocwork Desktop that provides Klocwork command line users with the same graphical capabilities that one would get from Visual Studio or Eclipse.  This tool was great for users who never used an IDE.  With Klocwork’s 9.1 release we have extended Klocwork Desktop’s reach by providing a remote capability that’s designed to support the type of environments described above.  Using Klocwork Desktop in remote mode allows users to view their source and detected-issue information when Klocwork Desktop does not have direct access to source files or defects, yet still get the benefits of finding and fixing your defects before you check-in your code.

One really cool feature that is part of this is the “you’ve got mail” notification.  At first, I have to admit this is something that worried me.  If I had to label one thing as a productivity drain it was those annoying alerts you get of new email coming in.  Of course right in the middle of doing something important you get distracted by a new email with plans for the next party (or in my case hearing about the kids latest poop explosion).  The first thing I always do is turn it off.  But in the case of finding bugs while coding, it only makes sense to give you these notifications in a heartbeat.  So you can actually be writing code on some machine in Jakarta and automatically your machine in San Jose is alerting you of bugs.  Pretty neat stuff.

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