Skype rules. I simply love the way you can easily use it to connect with other people. In my house, the Grandparents love it because they can see their grand daughter. So how can you make the most of Skype for your decentralized Agile team?
The guys over at Skype journal let us in on a list we just had to write about.
Using Skype for Agile Teams:
- Dial in video conferencing – For team cohesion, offsite team members video Skype to the daily standup meeting. Extend this for other meetings too!
- Remote pair programming – In pair programming, two programmers work together at one screen. Turn on Skype desktop screen sharing during a voice call with your programming partner. You’re both seeing the same things and can talk to each other. I believe that @joem uses this with his programming with Pivotal Labs.
- IM team backchannels – Skype has persistent chat: This means your conversations continue, even when other people are offline.
- Language translation – Take advantage of the free Chat Translator and Speaker for Skype, which pipes your IMs through Google for live machine translation.
- Be connected to other offices – Open up a full screen video call on a large monitor (or television) and just leave it on. It offers for a sense of being connected and the opportunity for chance conversation.
- IM notifications and alerting. The Skype Public API makes it easy to write apps that will pipe notifications from code repositories, test frameworks, and work tracking into Skype text chats.
- Avoid distractions. Skype offers the ability to turn off bells, beeps, and bloips for each chat room. The /alertsoff and /alertsoff IM commands give you control. Skype says:
“/alertsoff” Disable message alert notifications.
“/alertson [text]” Allows you to specify exactly what needs to appear in a chat for the chat to pop up. For example, /alertson London will only alert you when the word “London” appears in the chat.
Full of #win! Watch @joem below in an example of utilizing Skype for pair programming:
[VIA: Skype Journal]