Agile Connect Lisbon meetup – retrospective

Last week we hosted the 1st Agile Connect meetup in Lisbon, to an audience of about 20 developers, sysadmins and managers. I couldn’t be more proud of the outcome of this event, as the engagement of the audience was way above what I was expecting.

After a short intro by Nuno Gomes on the Portuguese Scrum Community past and future, the always nice Marco Silva presented ALM (Application Lifecycle Management) and it’s value in organizations (not necessarily Microsoft focused). In the end, we held an OST where everyone participated and Joaquim, an audience member, even took the task of leading the OST and explaining the concept to everyone.

It’s incredibly rewarding to witness such an active vibe from people interested in Agile here in Portugal. Known for being quite a bureaucratic country and miles behind in productivity, this meetup has proven that there’s people in organizations of all shapes and sizes, and in all kinds of roles, that are willing to push their workspaces into delivering value faster and working better.

As I started my hosting duties, and after a short dance to get the state up (it can get worse), I shared how I see the impact of Agile and Lean in general. It’s not (just) about delivering projects faster and being a happier team. It’s about delivering more value and faster to end-users. That’s the real impact. Take the recent example of It directly impacts the health of US citizens. The faster and better it’s done, more users will be healthier and more lives will be saved.

We’ll be doing one meetup every first Thrusday of each month, so stay tuned at Feel free to suggest topics and propose your own topic.

Side note: there is also an Agile Connect Porto

Here’s a (crappy) video of the meetup.

Agile Portugal Session – Don’t Blindly Follow

I did a session on Agile Portugal 2015 titled Don’t Blindly Follow. It’s based on a post by Mike Cohn that left me wondering why so many teams I know adopt something (eg: Scrum, Kanban) and stick to it without questioning if it’s really fit for them.

Super kudos to the team that organized the conference. It’s been growing fast for the last couple of years and it reached more than 300 attendees. Very excited for next year.

How to be in a popular rock band, have a full-time job and stay sane

I’ve written a post about having a great career while playing in a band. What I’ve learned about leadership, autonomy and working remotely.

Hope you like it. If you have simliar stories, I’d love to hear from you.

Tech Meetups in Lisbon for next couple of weeks

There’s so much happening on the tech scene in Lisbon right now. One of the things I’m more proud of while working on the community side of Rupeal is knowing we’ve helped developers get great content.

I was squeezing some of the next meetups in my calendar and realized this could be interesting to you as well.

Hopefully this list will be more and more interesting each month.

Feb 18 Lisbon Conversion Stack
Feb 19 XPlat (Cross Platform Microsoft) w/ Josh Holmes
Feb 19 require(‘lx’) – JS, Node
Feb 19 phplx February Meetup
Feb 19 Xamarin Experience
Feb 20 IoT at Microsoft
Feb 21 Women in Tech weekly meetup
Feb 24 Scala – “The Play Framework at Codacy” & “Challenges of moving a Java team to Scala”
Feb 26 Productized Talks

You can also checkout Kwan, we’ll try to keep it up to date with new meetups as we know about them.

Life for the past year

Talking about code while having delicious Belgium beers. This is Rupeal. Picture (C) 2013 Rupeal

It’s been way too long since I’ve written something here. Life’s been full of changes and new challenges for the last couple of years and writing has gone way down on my list of priorities. Enjoying a holiday, I decided today is a good day for a status.

Change #1 – Welcome Lucas, the new family member

Lucas Santa-Clara Fiel was born. Being a dad is the ultimate experience and my kid has thought me so much about me and life in general. The scary thing is, this is only the beginning. What awaits for the upcoming years is a secret only time will tell, but let me tell you, I’m loving every nanosecond of it.

Change #2 – Goodbye Fullsix, Hello Rupeal / SWAT

After 5 and a half years at Fullsix Group Portugal, I’ve joined RUPEAL as Chief Technology Officer. I’ve been a close follower of the company since it began and many of the people there were my colleagues in college. The time at Fullsix was amazing and I can’t thank enough for the people I’ve worked with along the years.

Rupeal’s culture is very different from the typical IT companies in Portugal, and this is even more noticeable in the SWAT team. Everyone knows all salaries and everyone has a say on promotions, hirings and overall team strategic direction. Adding to the CTO role, I’m also managing this team and everyday I’m learning something new. SWAT are a Rupeal team focused on creating awesome web products, from UX to Engineering, mostly focused on Ruby on Rails. More on this later (I was a Microsoft guy, remember?). We only use Scrum and our main source of clients and projects is word of mouth, which is a very good sign for me that this team, basically, rocks!

Change #3 – Welcome Rails and Apple

Most of my career has been around Microsoft technologies – ASP.NET, SQL Server, Azure and Silverlight. I’ve been a regular speaker at Microsoft events and, most of the times, a big fan of their products. My new team is focused in Ruby on Rails and everyone uses a Mac (including me, and I’m in love with the 13″ Air). By joining SWAT I had two choices – learn these platforms or try to push MS ones. The choice was obvious and learning Rails and working on a Mac have greatly opened my horizons on some things. I’ve not stopped using Microsoft. I’ve just added some new ones. We do some work on the Microsoft stack (ASP.NET, Web API, SQL Server, Azure) and our latest experiences were great. Microsoft is in the right direction for web development and, IMHO, is now better than Amazon for PaaS in the Cloud. But my time on Rails was very important to really understand where the new concepts in MS stack come from: migrations, continuous deployments, etc…. This is not just coding, this is a whole new mindset. Most of my time, however, is spent on Salesforce, Excel and management stuff.

See you really soon. In the meantime, check Rupeal’s new website and the really cool video below.