"I have a mind like a steel... uh... thingy." Patrick Logan's weblog.

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Monday, November 17, 2008

Nothing New

What Jim is observing is a problem, but I don't see this as a decline
from a previous position. This has been a problem all along...


"James Shore has declared agile to be in decline. He cites the many
teams doing 'sprints' and stand-up meetings, without adopting any of
the technical practices necessary to produce high-quality software
over the long-haul. In his estimation, this has led to thousands of
Scrum teams doing agile so poorly that they will almost certainly
fail, and possibly take the agile movement with them.

James lays a large portion of the blame on Scrum, and the
misapplication of Scrum. He compares Scrum with Extreme Programming
(XP) and notes that Scrum intentionally leaves out the engineering
practices that XP includes. Scrum is silent on topics such as pair
programming, test driven development, continuous integration, and test
automation. Without such practices, a team can quickly build a large,
buggy, and unmaintainable code base. This then becomes a weight around
the neck of the team, preventing them from responding quickly to
change, as an agile team should.

James thinks it's not all the fault of Scrum, however, as each team
must take responsible for its own success or failure. Many are
choosing to adopt only the superficial, and easy, parts of Scrum such
as short development sprints and daily stand-up meetings, while
ignoring harder, yet critical practices such as reflecting and
improving. Via this process, teams are empowered to identify and adopt
the engineering practices that they need to deliver shippable software
every iteration. Unfortunately, many teams fail to take this step."

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Portland, Oregon, United States
I'm usually writing from my favorite location on the planet, the pacific northwest of the u.s. I write for myself only and unless otherwise specified my posts here should not be taken as representing an official position of my employer. Contact me at my gee mail account, username patrickdlogan.