Recent Articles

Obamacare and the Bursting Dam

Obamacare and the Bursting Dam

November 25, 2013 | By | 1 Comment

The media for the past three years has failed to do its job as independent and skeptical investigative journalists with regards to Obamacare in general and the essential technology infrastructure in particular — not just the Healthcare.gov website itself but all the back-end systems and the state exchanges as well. Even when Healthcare.gov launched, most […]

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Post at Ace of Spades: why Obamacare is different

Post at Ace of Spades: why Obamacare is different

November 21, 2013 | By | Add a Comment

I have a new post up over at Ace of Spades about why Obamacare is different from the usual anti-GOP tropes put forward by the Democrats, and why they should be very, very afraid: 1) How many of you know someone who died in Hurricane Katrina? (Just thought I’d get that out of the way.) […]

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Obamacare and the 90% solution

Obamacare and the 90% solution

November 20, 2013 | By | 1 Comment

The first 90% of a software project takes 90% of the schedule. The remaining 10% takes the other 90% of the schedule. – The Metric Law of 90s We’ve had a lot of percentages thrown around about the Healthcare.gov system lately: 30-40% remains to be done, 60-70% is complete, as of December 1st it will […]

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Obamacare and the Three Heads [UPDATED]

Obamacare and the Three Heads [UPDATED]

November 19, 2013 | By | Add a Comment

In a large-scale, well-managed IT project, there are three key roles that need to be filled by three different people who are each talented, qualified, tough-nosed, and given commensurate authority. Actual titles may vary a bit, but the roles themselves are well-known: Project Manager. This person manages the personnel (and sub-organizations) on the entire project; […]

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Obamacare and the Potemkin Website

Obamacare and the Potemkin Website

November 16, 2013 | By | 3 Comments

[minor edits and additions, as always] Back on October 25th, Jeffrey Zients “landed” at the White House and took charge of the ailing Healthcare.gov website. He famously declared at the time: “By the end of November, HealthCare.gov will work smoothly for the vast majority of users. . . . Let me be clear: HealthCare.gov is fixable.” […]

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Obamacare and the Unstopped Project

Obamacare and the Unstopped Project

November 13, 2013 | By | 2 Comments

The most valuable IT consultant is someone who stands athwart a failing software project, yelling Stop, at a time when no one is inclined to do so, or to have much patience with those who so urge it. (with apologies to William F. Buckley) After a flurry of posts over several weeks on the unfolding Healthcare.gov […]

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Veterans Day – 2013

Veterans Day – 2013

November 11, 2013 | By | Add a Comment

Here is our annual Veterans Day post listing the vets in our respective families: ============= Bruce Webster: CPL Darren Green, USMC (active) — served twice in Afghanistan; married and still active. CPL Jon A. Webster, USMC (former) —  served in al Rutbah, Iraq; now going to school [son] Heather Harris, US Army National Guard (former) — […]

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Post at Ace of Spaces: what comes next for Healthcare.gov?

Post at Ace of Spaces: what comes next for Healthcare.gov?

November 5, 2013 | By | Add a Comment

I published a post over at Ace of Spades yesterday on what is likely to happen next with the Healthcare.gov development effort: So, what can you expect next? There are two basic courses that a project such as this takes at this point: oscillation or off-line. Oscillation is what happens when the developer continues to push […]

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Obamacare and the Unforgiving Gauntlet

Obamacare and the Unforgiving Gauntlet

November 3, 2013 | By | 3 Comments

  “Running the gauntlet” refers to a ceremony of passage, trial, or even execution wherein a person is forced to walk or run between two lines of people who are usually armed with clubs, whips, or other weapons. The people in the lines are then free to strike at the person running up the middle. […]

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“Ender’s Game” (the movie): a brief review w/spoilers

“Ender’s Game” (the movie): a brief review w/spoilers

November 1, 2013 | By | 1 Comment

I read the original “Ender’s Game” short story when it was published in Analog (August 1977). I was startled, because I knew the author, Orson Scott Card, slightly. He and I attended Brigham Young University at roughly the same time (he was a year ahead of me), I had met him a few times, and […]

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