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Re: An interesting rebuttal of "agile"

by Errto (Vicar)
on Mar 17, 2008 at 19:43 UTC ( #674631=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to An interesting rebuttal of "agile"

I didn't read the full article, but certain points strike me off the bat. One is that more process control is not always better; it's important to find the right balance. More specifically, it's important for all stakeholders (management, developers, QA, support, and the clients, be they internal or external) to understand and be comfortable with the process (and if possible, participate in its design) in order to avoid needless bureaucracy.

Where I work we have production releases every two weeks. Our process is pretty lean, but we follow it rigorously. Others might complain that it's not rigorous enough, but truthfully I think a lot teams I've encountered or read about have erected rigid processes to make up for the fact that they can't work in this "agile", rapid-development environment. Why not? Hard to say; lack of motivation, lack of imagination especially on the part of the team leaders, who knows.

Not, mind you, that I'm claiming rapid development is inherently better for all applications. If I were developing embedded systems, real-time systems, safety-critical stuff or anything under a strict regulatory regime, things might be different.

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Re^2: An interesting rebuttal of "agile"
by chromatic (Archbishop) on Mar 18, 2008 at 04:42 UTC
      The second link didn't work, chromatic, but the paper is available in the articles directory with the first paper. Well worth sleuthing out, too, thank you very much! Our teams here at D3ll do heavy embedded Linux work, and we constantly have evolving hardware as a constraint, usually with completely different schedules.

      For example, right now I'm helping a junior engineer explain to the project core team that there's a hardware defect blocking our progress. No matter how hard you try, software can not force a pin high when there's a leakage through a bias diode that drags it below 2 vdc.

      I think my big issue with Agile is integrating Agile teams with other players in our product development game. We'll be working those issues here, because the benefits of Agile are obvious. Our company as a whole releases a phenomenal number of products, and they go out the door mostly working right. Our challenge is that we need to do even more, with less overhead, because our markets are developing and technology is changing rapidly and we're under beancounter pressure to reduce operating expenses. Agile and XP have lots of good ideas we can use, but we still have to think through (for one example) how to integrate incremental software / firmware releases with publishing Users' Guides in multiple languages. Minor little details like that need to be worked out satisfactorily, and there are a lot of them.

      Don Wilde
      "There's more than one level to any answer."

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