Archive for August, 2005

JetsetJr in the news…

Monday, August 22nd, 2005

On Sunday, August 14th, the Raleigh News & Observer ran an interview with JetsetJr co-founder Doug Griswold.

The Project Management Triangle

Sunday, August 21st, 2005

Project ManagementHas your project hit a bump in the road? Are the project results diverging from the plan? Are you starting to think something might be wrong? How do you get back on track?If you have looked for answers in all the usual places, it might be useful to review the project management triangle.

The project triangle is a simple triangle with each edge labeled Scope, Time and Money. As a project manager, it’s your responsibility to control at least one side of the triangle. Without control of at least one side, you won’t be able to regain control of your project. If all three sides are fixed, the project will fail.

Time – often the first choice of Engineering, just add more time to the schedule. Let’s be honest, estimating dates is difficult. Sometimes people make mistakes. Sometimes dates are coerced. Whatever the case, if you are going to ask for more time, be sure you ask for enough time. Nobody wants to continuously slip a schedule. It’s bad for business and it’s bad for moral.

Money – people or equipment. In The Mythical Man Month, Fred Brooks cautions against adding more people to an already late project, but if the project is truly short staffed the addition of “value-add” players may be the solution. Some projects are constrained by their tools – slow computers, limited disk space, etc. Buy, rent, or borrow what you need to get the job done.

Scope – often this edge remains fixed when in fact it can be the easiest to manipulate. By postponing commitments we remain fluid and agile. Is it better to complete 5 features on time or slip the schedule to get 7? That depends on how committed you and your customers are to those 2 features. In Lean Software Development, Mary and Tom Poppendieck advocate postponing decisions until the “Last Responsible Moment.” Many projects try to nail down too much up front. Mary and Tom make some great arguments in favor of waiting.

One final note: smooth running project strive to balance the triangle. Extremely short or long sides make for an unstable project. Next time your project starts to lean, adjust one of the three sides.

Visit Llamawerx solutions to learn more — or contact us today.

The tasks of leaders

Tuesday, August 16th, 2005

In the May/June issue of Consulting magazine, David Morrison summarizes the tasks of leaders.

  • Invest where value is flowing in, which is relatively easy
  • Disinvest where value is flowing out, which is difficult because of the human and organizational implications
  • Find the next winning business design, which is the most difficult

I’ve had a copy of his article pinned to my bulletin board. This is simple enough for even an engineer like me to understand. To me, this distills what business is all about.


Monday, August 8th, 2005

RALEIGH, NC – August 8, 2005 – Llamawerx proudly announces the launch of their new website, is an online community dedicated to traveling with children. The site will enable people to exchange information about traveling with children.“If you have ever tried to plan a trip with your kids there’s always some information you’re looking for but can’t find,” said Llamawerx’s Doug Griswold. “When my family traveled to Thailand last year with our 18 month old son we searched all over for what to take and how to do it. That was the first inspiration for JetsetJr. Now, we’ve built an online community where travelers can post your questions and let others help you out.”

Discussion boards, free links and a weblog are part of the package along with an online store. The online store recommends age-appropriate items for kids and their parents to make the trip more enjoyable and educational.

“Today’s children are bombarded with cheap toys having limited value. As a mother and traveler, I’m on the lookout for travel stuff that will be entertaining, educational and small,” said Judy Gerard. “We’ve tried to select items for JetsetJr that meet these requirements and are age-appropriate too.”


About Llamawerx
Llamawerx is a client-driven consulting group conceived in 2001 to provide agile services relating to consulting, software development, business analysis, mentoring and training. Their strength is their ability to bring software from concept to reality, rapidly and reliably. For more information, visit or call (919) 863-4336.

Llamawerx Summer Update

Monday, August 1st, 2005

Summer’s here and while the US is baking under a heat wave, I thought it would be a good time to update everyone on what we’ve been up to here at Llamawerx.Have you thought about setting up a website, but continue to put it off? Do you have a site that could use freshening up? We’re running a summer special on web development and hosting. For a limited time, you can get a professionally designed website starting at $595. For details, visit Hurry, this offer expires September 1, 2005.

Llamatrax the newsletter has been retired – and replaced with The Llamatrax Weblog. For us, blogging is a big improvement over the PDF newsletter. Entries are simpler to create, written in HTML, archived chronologically, allow comments and can be read using a web browser or RSS reader. If you haven’t seen it yet, visit and read what’s there. Don’t forget to bookmark it and come back!

Llamawerx proudly announces the launch of JetsetJr – an online community dedicated to traveling with children. I know many of you have children and sometimes you’re looking for information to help make a trip go smoothly. On JetsetJr, you’ll find a weblog, message boards and an online shop. The more people that visit – and participate – the more information will grow. Even if you’re not traveling, take a look. You might find some neat gifts for the kid in all of us –

Finally, if you’re looking for something to read this summer, visit our bookshelf for some great Amazon selections:

Enjoy the summer.