Piratical Management (Pirarticles)

Reading time ~ 2 minutes

I’ve spent very little time on writing articles directly related to my nom-de-plume.

There are 3 main reasons behind this.

  1. Most* of my “Bad Captain” thinking is fuelled by negative workplace, management and team experiences and I’ve not had any for a long time.
  2. I have a backlog of 70+ more valuable articles and ideas already without adding pirate concepts into the mix.
  3. There are plenty of articles already discussing pirates and management on the web, why re-invent the wheel!

*The rest is probably fuelled by cider, rum and late-night ramblings with close friends – think “Father Jack with earrings”

So as I make final preparations for a dawn raid at the Grand America Hotel in Salt Lake City and a week at Agile 2011 I’ve been digging out some reading material…

Here’s a quick pick-through of piratical management articles (“pirarticles”) I’ve found on the web so far plus a couple of potential reads to add to my “booklog” (thanks @MarkDalgarno for that very sticky term last week).


Some short articles for when my cognitive load means I don’t have space for anything more plus one or 2 that are more formal.


I’ve not read either of these, I’d be interested in some reviews from people that have done but for now they’re going onto the booklog.


  • Pressgang – Not directly about Pirates per-se but they do belt out a few amazing seafaring related folk-rock stories.

A little history (not much)

Deadly Serious:

A reminder that whilst my moniker is a light-hearted dig at my appearance and occasional nocturnal ramblings, there’s a whole other side to “real” pirates…

Arrrr – Thar Be Treasure in Cambridge!

Reading time ~ 2 minutes

I’ve been quiet on the writing front for a couple of weeks as I get up to speed with my new job. In the meantime, I wanted to share one of my leaving presents from my former crew and some software community highlights from this fantastic city.

In order to protect the innocent, I’ve had to do some minor editing to anonymize some of the content however my 2 favourite landmarks are still nice & clear as is some of the entertaining corporate commentary.

Credit to Stoots The Quartermaster and Squelch the Ship’s Artist/Brawler for this gem!

The Captain's Treasure Map

Treasure! – click for a full-size version

For anyone thinking of joining the local treasure quest, there’s a fantasic, forward-thinking software scene in Cambridge (UK). I’ve been up here for 7 years now and I’m still having a blast.

The team at Software East are busy putting on fantastic events and following the huge success last year, the second “Agile Cambridge” conference is happening in September with keynotes from David Anderson & Jurgen Appelo.

For those considering a career here; whilst not exhaustive, the Cambridge Network is a great place to start looking, and for an example of the kind of companies that make working in Cambridge special, take a look at these guys.

Meanwhile you can often find a large contingent of my former crew at The Portland Arms on a Friday Lunchtime. Every other Monday a few of us head down to The Old Spring for the now regular “Agile Cambridge Monday Meetup” and once a year the Cambridge Beer Festival becomes a regular lunchtime and evening haunt (and a recruiting/networking hub) for much of the city.

Of course there’s all the usual culture, architecture, students, music and everything else here but you can read about all that from the usual tourist guides.



Reading time ~ < 1 minutes

Ahoy Me Hearties!

Having mortgaged my soul to Davey Jones’ BBC Model B long before the dot com Boom & Bust, the Millenium Bug, the introduction of the Euro and the demise of Altavista; 2011 is the 15th year of my commercial softwarefaring exploits and roughly the 25th year since my voyaging began in Basic with Usborne books, the “Welcome Tape” and early forays into the online ocean via Prestel.

Herewith begins my testimony of daring exploits, shores travelled, cultures & rituals observed and occasional ramblings associated with bad bread.

Before I commence it is important to clarify that these musings represent a manifestation of my inner monologue and must not be associated with those of any of my current or past employers.

With this short introduction, I bid you good day.