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Agile, Craftsmanship and Exciting News!

“Software Craftsmanship rejects the narrow role specialization that software engineering forced on developers and instead celebrates true craftsmen who can take a complete job from start to finish.” – Pete McBreen – Software Craftsmanship: The New Imperative

For the past several years, my focus has been on helping organizations adopt lean and agile practices to improve how they deliver software. I tended to play one of two roles – either convincing managers and executives why it was critical to look at the whole picture, or convincing development teams that paying attention to the business and being involved was a Really Good Idea.

Around October of 2010, I made the decision to take a sabbatical from conferences, mailing lists, twitter, etc. Basically just spend a year reflecting on where I was and the impact I wanted to have. During that time I got to see things like Code Retreats and the impact that had on communities. I got to watch communities like Chicago grow and prosper because of the collaboration by the people who were part of it. And I got to participate as a minor role as a mentor with the groups participating in Gazelle Lab.

And it made me realize that – more than wanting to move to a place like Chicago or Silicon Valley – that I wanted to make that kind of community happen where I live in the Tampa area. We have great people, great companies, and great opportunities to continue with the momentum here. But, with a hectic travel schedule (I’m Platinum for the year on Delta – 75k miles – and it’s only the end of February) I knew that I’d have to find something different. But beyond just something different – an opportunity to be with a company or start something which valued the community, which valued building the skills and experiences of developers.

About three weeks ago, I talked with some people who had done something similar in Chicago – Micah Martin and Paul Pagel with 8th Light. And the more we chatted, the more it became clear that together we could make something amazing happen.

So I’m excited to announce that on March 5th, I’m going to be joining 8th Light to help expand an amazing company to a new market – Tampa, FL! We’ll be bringing a lot of the same principles to the Tampa office that are shared in Chicago – apprenticeship programs, 8th Light University and a company focused on building beautifully crafted software products that deliver the highest value to our customers.

We’ll be hosting several exciting events over the next couple of months, including bringing Uncle Bob Martin down to Tampa for presentations. More importantly, we’re going to be on the lookout for people interesting in becoming a part of an organization truly committed to a continuous learning process, and the growth of its people.

This also means I’ll be leaving Net Objectives which has taught me a lot about furthering my thinking around architecture and design, as well as scaling and adopting lean principles at scale. I’m thankful to Alan Shalloway, Alan Chedalawada, Amir Kolsky, Mike Cox, Scott Bain and Ken Pugh for their insights, discussions and partnership.

But I’m excited about the opportunities we’ll have here in the Tampa area to rejoin the communities and help build some amazing partnerships, products and events. My email address of foyc at cory foy dot com is still around, or you can email me at cory at 8thlight dot com, so if you have any ideas, or would like any information, be sure to let me know!

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