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Live from INCOSE 2008

I think this is becoming a new favorite pastime, blogging from conferences! I’m here at INCOSE 2008 in the Netherlands, specifically the beautiful old town of Utrecht. In case you are not familiar with it, Utrecht is the oldest town in the Netherlands, about 30 minutes by train from Amsterdam.

I have been here a few days now, acclimating from jet lag and touring about. In some ways it feels just like home – a university town, with people in orange running around the streets celebrating at night (and drunk). The difference is that instead of cheering for UT’s latest victory, they are cheering for the Netherland’s football wins at Euro2008.

Anyway, I’m here and hope to do some posting “live from INCOSE 2008” all week, as I’ve done in the past.

Just a quick intro to INCOSE – it is an organization in support of systems engineering. This international symposium occurs each year, to encourage sharing of new ideas in systems engineering. I’m particularly interested in the conference because I get to learn about working on large systems projects. We see a variety of both large software application projects and systems projects, and so it’s fun to see the distinctions. Honestly, many of the concepts, methods, and tools apply to systems and software projects. But in some cases, there is much more complexity in large systems projects that brings out new requirements challenges.

One of my favorite parts of this conference is hearing people’s examples. There are a lot of people from the transportation industries in Europe, with fantastic projects for railroads, waterways, and aerospace.

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