The LabVIEW Experiment

You may have heard rumors that I started a podcast. "The LabVIEW Experiment" is a place to discuss how to improve our craft and make coding fun again.

The LabVIEW Experiment

If you have been to GDevCon or GDevCon NA, you may have heard rumors that I started a podcast. You may have also seen some of these "The LabVIEW Experiment" stickers floating around. I am starting a new podcast. It is called "The LabVIEW Experiment". The first episode will release next week on Tuesday morning.

Why a podcast?

The LabVIEW community presents an excellent opportunity for a podcast. There's currently a vacuum of new podcast content around LabVIEW. In the past, we've had VI Shots, which had lots of great content, most of which is still highly relevant. I very much recommend listening to it.  Unfortunately, Michael hasn't produced an episode in a long time. Jonathan Hobson's Quick Drop podcast showed a lot of promise. Jono put out some good episodes before he got distracted by life. Chris Farmer has his DQMH podcast, which also has some great content. Unfortunately, its scope is limited to just DQMH and his output is kind of sporadic. Since there's a vacuum in that space at the moment, it seemed like a good time to launch a new podcast.

Why the title?

The title works on several levels. LabVIEW is an experiment in graphical programming. Can we break free from lines of text and instead draw schematic-like graphical structures that the computer can execute? It was definitely an experiment when it started. I think it's fair to say that experiment yielded results since LabVIEW has stuck around for 30 years or so.

The title also works because LabVIEW started out targetting scientists and engineers working in laboratories conducting experiments. It still continues to be used for rapid prototyping both in industry and in academia. LabVIEW itself is designed to facilitate that kind of experimentation.

What is the goal?

That brings us to the goal of the podcast. The goal of the podcast is to bring that experimentation into the software design space. We design software to conduct experiments but rarely do we experiment with the software design process itself. Many LabVIEW developers are stuck in an old-school waterfall-type system. Also because most LabVIEW developers aren't software engineers or computer science majors, we tend to be an insular community. We tend to be either unaware or late adopters of many techniques and processes used by other, more mainstream, software languages. There is a huge opportunity there to improve how we do things and to make our lives more enjoyable.

The idea is to bring in ideas from other software communities and facilitate high-level discussions. I want to interview people in the LabVIEW Community who are implementing things like Test Driven Development and Continuous Integration. I want to pick their brain about the benefits they get out of those techniques and the tricks to implement those ideas in LabVIEW. I also want to bring in people from outside the LabVIEW community to discuss these topics as well, so we can learn how they are implemented in other programming languages.

I hope by exploring these advanced techniques to make them accessible to everyone. I want to bring a sense of experimentation, creativity, and joy into the LabVIEW community. I want community members to embrace learning new techniques and processes. I want to change our perception of software development from a rote activity into a creative process. I also want to remove the stigma around failure. If we are going to experiment, not everything is going to turn out like we planned. That's not failure, it's a learning experience.

Guest List

Our first guest is going to be Enrique Noe Arias. Some of you may know him. I ran into him at GDevCon N.A. He was just so happy to be at GDevCon N.A. and so happy to be on the podcast and share his thoughts. I put him first because I felt like he set the tone perfectly.

Here are some others I have interviewed (in no particular order). You'll see these published over the next couple of months. We'll release one episode every 2 weeks.

  • Allen C. Smith
  • Jim Kring
  • Bill Welch
  • Ravi Beniwal
  • Omar Mussa
  • Shane O'Neill
  • Stefan Lemmens
  • Derrick Bommarito
  • Joerg Hampel
  • Steve Watts

I have a much longer list of people I'd like to interview. If you'd like to get on that list, send me an e-mail or ping me on social media. If we're not already connected, and you don't know how to get a hold of me, leave a comment on this post and I'll reach out to you. I'm also open to suggestions too, so if you know someone else, who I should talk to, let me know that as well.

How Do I Listen?

The first episode will drop on Tuesday 9/29. After that, we'll release new episodes every 2 weeks. Once it is released, you should be able to find "the LabVIEW Experiment" on your favorite podcast app, such as Apple Podcasts, the android equivalent, Stitcher, Podcatcher, Sound Cloud, Spotify, etc. It probably won't show up until the 1st episode is released. Once it is released, if you still have problems finding it, let me know and I'll check into it.

There is also a website: https://thelabviewexperiment.com. It's up now. There's just some basic information up there now. The episodes will be posted there as well once they are up.

There is also a YouTube channel. We're recording video as well, so if you prefer video, you can check that out. The videos will release at the same time as the audio.
Here is a link:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjKjH3jJ_sW3KHgNrWWpQzQ

Mailing List

I started a separate mailing list for the podcast. Use the button below to signup and get notified when new episodes are available.