Browsing articles tagged with "systems design Archives | Pedro Innecco"

SLOTH: A model about user’s unreasonable expectations of systems

One of my favourite subjects during my MSc (also one of my top grades), was Human Factors in Systems Design. Therefore I shouldn’t act surprised that this subject is so present at my current work as the central focus in our process of designing and developing software.

While I consider having a user-centred design approach a fundamental aspect of successful software, involving users can also lead to problems. These problems can be easily managed though, as long as we recognise them. With that in mind, I came up with the SLOTH model, which aims to identify some fundamental issues of involving end-users in systems design.


Dear developers: Enough with the bad coding

Good riddance 2016! Many would argue that it has been the worst year in decades. And while I do not want to get into the merit of the loss of talent the world has suffered, I did notice another heavy blow we took this past year: The quality of software developed on Windows. It seems to me that a lot of developers are taking certain liberties that are rubbing me off the wrong way. Such bad coding practices are certainly not new, but I did notice an increase in them this past year. So I wrote this open letter for 2017, in the hope that such bad coding habits can be addressed. Read more >>

Considerations when formatting phone numbers

If you ever read my post about considerations when customising address fields, I reckon you would know by now that I am all about consistency and standards. No, I am not aspy (my mother had me tested). But I could argue that computers are, which is why I am all for data quality and integrity.

I reckon everyone reading this would agree that normally, the formatting of phone numbers is a minor issue. However when one is involved in a project as a solutions architect and a requirement arises asking for phone numbers to be ‘perfectly’ formatted on systems, I am sure they’ll beg to differ. In this post I’ll be going over misconceptions and considerations around phone numbers an the consequences it might have on computer systems.


Dynamics CRM: Considerations when customising address fields

The perceived issue on customising address fields and how to store addresses in computer systems always fascinated me. Not because of any apparent complexity one might believe that exists when handling addresses, but mostly because of people’s undeserved anxiety around the subject. And in Dynamics CRM it is no different.

The issue tends to surround the myth that countries and regions with different subdivisions would require complex requirements for address handling. I came across a couple of clients who believe that they require such a complex solution that their Dynamics CRM deployments almost came onto a halt because of such hurdle. I the end, the solution relies not on complex customisation, but on standards compliance, a little bit of compromising, but most importantly: common sense.

Please note that while this post relates to address fields in Dynamics CRM perspective, the data management considerations presented here should be taken into account regardless of the applications. Read more >>

Windows 8 and Metro: Let’s not get carried away

When I was about 8 years old, I saw in an art gallery a painting that got stuck in my memory forever. The canvas had an textured, icy grey background colour. Besides that it had only two thin lines of paint crossing each other forming an “X”. One of those lines was painted in a soothing lilac tone, starting half-way to the bottom left of the canvas and going on a tangent towards the top-right corner. The other line was a striking tone of pink, which started with a gentle stroke, increasing in contrast as it went on a tangent towards the top-left corner.

Then I checked the price of that piece of work. The next thing I remember was my mother reprehending me for cursing out loud in a public place. This story came to my mind today as I was installing Windows 8, and reflects what I think of the whole hype around the Metro interface. Read more >>