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@dottedmag: that is very cool indeed.


regarding remote working. I find astounding that companies rather have their employees commute in several hours a day then have them work from home and have a (more) decent work/life balance.


@thomas: Trade happiness of employees against decreased productivity? Every time!


@dottedmag: as in less happy employees and less productivity?


or more productivity?


@thomas: The choice is usually between remote (unproductive employees due to lack of support for remote work) and on-site (unhappy employees due to long commute).


It's still rare for companies to use resources for making remote work first-class.


@dottedmag: I have done some remote pairing… and I found it almost as good as sitting next to each other. Almost better as the office where I work is very noisy.


so it can be done… if only people choose to do it.


I'm considering going remote. Noisy office I can deal with (headphones), but I'm suffering from multiple allergies. First it was the carpet, air conditioning and now it's the highway: my lungs feel terrible after a day at the office.


Also looking backward, the most productive work and deepest thoughts always usually at home.


I'm still looking at the disadvantages of remote, like: being socially isolated and keeping a good work/private balance.


When walking through code, do remote people usually record the video and make it available to teammates?


(On-site, I find it invaluable to always record when someone’s walking through a system. Even months later, I never have to ask them to repeat something they already explained.)


@tjg I like the idea


@tjg: why not use a screen sharing program


@borkdude: Oh yeah, if people use that, I'm wondering if people record it and make it available to each other.


(Since I'm currently the only one who has my videos, I get lazy and don't pause recording when I'm reading private emails/IM, etc. simple_smile )


You can use something like screenhero for walking through code reviews with colleagues


It's pretty awesome. You both have control of the system doing the screenshare


two mouse cursurs, etc.


It can even be integrated with Slack so you type something like /hero @someone and it'll fire up the share via screenhero


From the integration doc:

Once your account has been configured, you can type the following commands in Slack to use the Screenhero integration:
/hero @username – Start screen sharing with a teammate.
/hero  – Start screen sharing with someone not on your Slack team.
/hero voice @username – Start a voice call with a teammate


I think there are lots of challenges when trying to implement a remote company culture. Getting everyone on board to use the relevant tools can be... complicated. I tried to roll out JIRA Agile across a small team and nobody else really invested themselves in it. So I've stepped back a bit and am working on getting everyone (including management) to use the issues system built into the codebase on GitHub so that everything is kind of documented in one place, rather than having everything spread across email, Skype text message and verbal chat. This seems to be working well so hopefully once this is a daily activity for everyone involved I can look to step it up again and try using some sort of agile/kanban methodology to keep project milestones on track.


open office plan was a terrible idea


I'm already distracted enough with the whole internet


having people walking behind me, talking, doing their stand ups and conference calls


I cannot even think of a possibility how someone got the idea and said, hey, lets all move to open plans, we will be more productive there. Only thing I see is that its cheaper regarding office space...but thats all...


@jrotenberg: I worked for a company which had an open office, converted from old mayonnaise factory. 10m-high ceiling and echo like in an indoors swimming pool. It took me couple of months to move my desk to an (unused) small meeting room. Last time I dropped by, all but one of the meeting rooms were converted to the offices (2-3 persons in each).


Open area was left to the HR and sales :)


The company I work for did research on this 40 years ago… and came to the conclusion that office are 11% more productive. Guess what we have?


open plan… yes.. loving it…. not.


none of the options are ideal


this whole working thing is totally unnatural regardless of when and where you do it


I definitely need a laptop and just move whereever, if I'm in an office. Even if I like a particular spot, it's unpleasant for me to be there every day.


@tjg: even when I worked 50% from home, I tended to move to a coffee bar during the day, just for the change


i’m probably ~50% at home and when i’m in the office i’m basically waiting to leave


often won’t even start a task until i get home because i know i’ll end up distracted midway


i had an office once


when i worked in a kitchen cabinet warehouse


for minimum wage


of course i was only in there when i wasn’t loading a customer or unloading a delivery


but on slow days i had the whole place to myself


Open office has been shown to increase collaboration. Unfortunately, the main function of developers is not collaboration. So open offices help us get better at talking to everyone while getting less non-talking work done.


I've heard the opposite as well (don't have a source handy).


in my experience collaboration is more of a general value (or not) in teams and not necessarily related to the physical environment


n=1 disclaimer applies