Situated learning - Legitimate peripheral participation

is an excellent book by Jean Lave and Etienne Wenger (isbn 0-521-42374-0). As usual I'm going to quote from a few pages:
The world carries its own structure so that specificity always implies generality (and in this sense generality is not to be assimilated to abstractness).
Reversing production steps has the effect of focusing the apprentice's attention first on the broad outlines…
The fact that the work was done in an interaction between members opened it up to other members of the team.
There is anecdotal evidence that where the circulation of knowledge among peers and near-peers is possible, it spreads exceedingly rapidly and effectively.
A learning curriculum is thus characteristic of a community.
Understanding and experience are in constant interaction.
Mirroring the intricate relationship between using and understanding artefacts there is an interesting duality inherent in the concept of transparency. It combines the two characteristics of invisibility and visibility… It might be useful to give a sense of this interplay by analogy to a window. A window's invisibility is what makes it a window, that is, an object through which the outside world becomes visible. The very fact, however, that so many things can be seen through it makes the window itself highly visible, that is, very salient in a room, when compared to, say, a solid wall. Invisibility of mediating technologies is necessary for allowing focus on, and thus supporting visibility of, the subject matter.

World class match fishing

is an excellent book by Kevin Ashurst (isbn 0-304-29729-1). As usual I'm going to quote from a few pages:
I always try to visualise what is happening under the water, and the only concrete clues I can count on are the bites, or the lack of them.
When loose-feeding for roach and dace, it always pays to shuffle the tackle when bites cease. Moving a shot an inch or two, or altering the depth slightly, works so frequently that one has to assume that the fish, as well as becoming wary because of their diminishing numbers, also get shy of baits coming to them in precisely the same way all the time.
Good loose-feeing is one of the key factors affecting success in match angling, and the difficulty of getting it right is one of the reasons why I set so much store by practising for big matches.
The starting point is the knowledge that you cannot scare fish away if they are not there to begin with.
I always think fish behave a bit like birds. If you scatter breadcrumbs on a lawn the birds begin eating it from the edges, rarely alighting in the middle, and I reckon fish behave the same way.
The trick to drop fishing is to read the signs, and the most important one is getting a caster shelled or a maggot sucked without seeing a bite.
A stick float is quite heavy in relation to its size, and at any sort of range we can cop for a splashy sort of strike.
The fish in shallow water tend to be shy. They usually come into the baited area, pick up a bait and bolt.
The original choice of float is obviously dictated by the distance to be cast and the conditions on the day, and the aim should be to achieve whatever distance is required easily. It is better to overcast and pull back than to fall short and have to cast again.
It goes without saying that the kinds of bites we can expect depends entirely on the way the fish are behaving on the day, and how we are shotted in response to that behaviour.
To be perfectly honest the appearance of my floats has never interested me. I never even thought about them in the artistic sense until Colin brought it up, but I suppose the answer lies under the general heading of ignoring everything which is not essential. I devote a lot of time, thought and energy to my fishing, but only to those departments which require time, thought and energy.

More CyberDojos

I ran a CyberDojo at the excellent Tampere goes Agile conference recently (left photo). It got a 100% green card vote.

A few days later I ran another CyberDojo for the devs at Solita Oy, also in Tampere. A nicer bunch of people you couldn't ask to meet.

And a few days after that I ran yet another CyberDojo at the Ericsson Agile conference in Helsinki (right photo). @jussikm @htaubert and @karmolis tweeted that it was the most fun they'd had at work in 2011.

ALE CyberDojo Ice Breaker

I ran a mass-participation CyberDojo "keynote" at the excellent ALE conference in Berlin recently. 10 laptops were setup with a Yahtzee refactoring exercise in Java. Over 200 people participated. The aim was not to write code - it was to mix people up and get lots of energy into the conference right at the start. I think it worked very well.