I did a presentation at the Agile 2012 conference in Dallas on how to do Agile release planning with distributed teams. This is something that we struggled with at my last company since we had 300 developers split into 40+ teams in 5 different countries.
I covered a bunch of different topics that matter for facilitators of Agile planning sessions, including budget hardware for video conferencing. While you can pay for expensive video-presence solutions from Cisco and AT&T, with clever usage of consumer hardware you can achieve pretty good results for a fraction of the cost. For more details about hardware options for doing virtual planning sessions, my hardware guide to streaming is a good place to start.
This also was an announcement of a new version of the Apropos Portfolio Planning Tool that I did in JavaFX 1.3 and previously open-sourced. Ravi Buddharaju, one of my former co-workers who is a great Agile coach and Java developer (and leader of the new Hyderabad JUG), did a new version of Apropos based on JavaFX 2. It is quite a bit faster and much more stable than the old version of the tool, which speaks volumes to both Ravi’s skills and also the maturity of the JavaFX 2 platform.
For more information about the Apropos project, check out the Google code project here (we will post on the front page when the new version of Apropos is checked in):