Jamie's Picture Jamie Dinkelacker, Ph.D.
Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii
email: jamie {DOT} dinkelacker {AT} gmail {DOT} com

Blog . Resume . Selected Publications . Sunarcher

Jamie Dinkelacker serves as Director of Engineering for Google's Niantic Labs for new product development in areas at the intersection of geo/local, social, and mobile applications and services such as Ingress and FieldTrip He currently manages teams in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Mountain View, California. He previously served an engineering manager for Google Maps, Google's Launch Team, and Google's Enterprise Group. Jamie has deep expertise with lean and agile development, leading highly technical teams, new product development, and product management. Jamie is also a co-chair of the Maui Software Initiative, a private enterprise group focused on evolving Maui into a software technology center for the Pacific Rim, and he is a member of the University of Hawaii Maui College Advisory Board for their Applied Business and Information Technology program.

His interests, activities, and research focus on the essence of how organizations can effectively produce software of value for users, and thus involves management, leadership, software engineering, innovation, technology trends, communities of practice, collaboration and organizational performance. These interests encompass the realms of "lean" development, open source, software services, and reflect the intricate balance between product management and project management when constrained by real market economics. Jamie's occassional blog is located here.

Background: Jamie worked in Silicon Valley for two decades as a senior technical manager at Google, HP Labs, Netscape, and Apple's Advanced Technology Group. Prior to Google, throughout 2005 and 2006, Jamie was a Consulting Professor of Software Engineering Management at Carnegie Mellon University's West Coast Campus. He was a Director of Carnegie Mellon's Center for Open Source Investigation and Research Director of CMU's Center for Engineered Innovation.

From 2000 through 2004 Jamie managed the Global Collaboration Environments Group at Hewlett-Packard Laboratories in Palo Alto, California, where he oversaw the Lab's worldwide external and internal web sites and services, streaming media services, and collaboration tools, and content management systems. Prior to that he was the manager of technology transfer for software at HP Labs, scaled from the desktop to the enterprise.

Jamie had the wild ride of working as a senior technical manager at Netscape for 5 years managing software development of e-commerce software, and creating developer training programs. Earlier, he managed development in Apple's Advanced Technology Group in the User Experience Laboratory. His work has covered the spectrum from senior scientist to senior product management, from software development manager to software training, from performance support systems to international ecommerce installations. He had tours of duty at both AOL (America Online) and iPlanet (the Netscape/Sun venture). He has managed companies, organizations, departments, teams, products, grants, and projects.

Dr. Dinkelacker taught at Michigan State for 10 years, and also founded and ran two start-up companies focused on advanced analytic software for the media industries, especially television news operations. He has a background in radio (former president of WRPI-FM) and live musical performance (click here for some tunes.). He has published in both the academic and trade press, and holds two active patents on web technologies. He is an active amateur astronomer with particular interests in the solar wind, space weather, and electron strahl.

Jamie is often an invited speaker regarding lean and agile software methods, collaboration, Internet technologies, and social aspects of renewable energy. He is on the board of advisors of the Foresight Institute and earlier served as an advisor to the Nanobusiness Alliance. He also held an appointment as a Research Fellow at California State University, Monterey Bay in the School of Information Technology and Communication Design for 2004-2005. He was formerly Vice-Chair of the Environmental Committee of the Los Altos, California City Council.

Student of Organizations: Since college, Jamie's been intrigued by thinking of organizations as organic entities in their own right as complex adaptive systems, many aspects of which are evident with the Internet and the web-enabled world that is emerging. The rising tide of open source software and its myriad implications for business, entrepreneurship, and social activities heralds fresh economic opportunities and research vistas for software development and delivery, the role of game theory in product/service creation, the evolving practices of lean/agile software development, and poses far-reaching challenges for leadership as the ways of the new undermine the ways of the obsolete. Lean development, in particular, recognizes that software is best developed with a fresh mindset of delivering value, removing muda, and continuous learning -- hence, moving beyond the sordid history of failed attempts of applying the mass production mindset to software development. Jamie has the good fortune to work with, and often lead, incredibly productive and innovative technical teams with several of Silicon Valley's most signature companies.

Sunarcher: For years Jamie had a private consultancy, The Sunarcher Organization, that advised senior executives about effective approaches for sustainable software development with a focus on building successful and product technical teams, working with managers to bring out the best of their staff, and helping them achieve the disciplined focus necessary to achieve success in the rapidly changing economic environment of high technology software development. Jamie has been described as an expert technical meeting facilitator and has led numerous technical discussions and strategy offsites for Sunarcher clients.

Energy Enthusiast: As a personal hobby, the field of renewable energy, especially the intriguing notions of an anticipated hydrogen society and hydrogen economy, fuel cells, and distributed generation, are long-standing personal interests since having conducted various market research projects for the solar industries during the 1980s. Jamie is the webmaster of the Suntriz website, an educational site about residential photovoltaics targted for Silicon Valley property owners, and the H2Nexus educational website about the anticipated Hydrogen Society. He now has a project underway to fully move off the grid..

Expertise: Jamie's expertise reflects the integration of software development, technical management, communication, teaching, and leadership. He stays current with the state of the art of lean and agile methods, design patterns, distributed systems, cloud computing, mobile devices, web technologies, computing at massive scale, and software services.

Education: Jamie received his B.S. in Management Science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in Troy N.Y. with a specialization in operations research and minor in economics, his M.S. in communications research also from RPI with an emphasis on statistical modeling, and his Ph.D. in communications research from Michigan State University with studies in system science, organizations, and media.

Personal: Dr. Dinkelacker is an avid musician, artist, and cyclist -- and loves playing ball and frisbee with his whippets. He and his lovely wife live in the Launiupoko area of Lahaina, on the island of Maui, Hawaii. Thank you for reading.

Jamie is known to regularly pull glowing rabbits out of invisible hats when dealing with tough technical issues and dysfunctional teams.
©: 2012 Jamie Dinkelacker