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Agile (as practiced today) is the new Waterfall

This is supposed to be an introductory presentation on Agile.

In this presentation I give some examples of heavy weight methods and their implications on your project. Then I give a quick overview of Agile methods, the rationale behind it, its origin, its values and principles. I move on to describe that what I see happening today in the industry is really waterfall in the name of Agile. I give some reasons why this is happening and then I give some pointers to move away from this flawed thinking.

Bottom line, Agile is not a Silver Bullet and don’t fall pray to marketing gimmicks. Question dogmatic claims. Adapt Agile to your needs and take baby steps.

View more presentations from Naresh Jain.
  • http://www.methodsansmadness.com/ Jeremy Kriegel

    Great deck. The last few slides are very applicable and too the point.

  • http://www.methodsansmadness.com Jeremy Kriegel

    Great deck. The last few slides are very applicable and too the point.

  • jb

    I don’t much agree with your analysis or your recommended solution, but it is always interesting to get new perspectives and thoughts.  Thanks

  • jb

    I don’t much agree with your analysis or your recommended solution, but it is always interesting to get new perspectives and thoughts.  Thanks

  • http://www.martinig.ch/ Franco

    Interesting presentation with a lot of “numbers”.  You should however not forget that Tom Gilb was advocating iterative and incremental delivery in the 80s. RAD is also a technique from the 90s. So Agile principles are not so new as they seem.

  • http://www.martinig.ch/ Franco

    Interesting presentation with a lot of “numbers”.  You should however not forget that Tom Gilb was advocating iterative and incremental delivery in the 80s. RAD is also a technique from the 90s. So Agile principles are not so new as they seem.

  • http://langrsoft.com/ Jeff L.

    The Naked Agile slide is most interesting. A link might be helpful to others looking for you to expound on these bullet points. I found this at http://blogs.agilefaqs.com/2009/03/17/naked-agile/.

  • http://langrsoft.com Jeff L.

    The Naked Agile slide is most interesting. A link might be helpful to others looking for you to expound on these bullet points. I found this at http://blogs.agilefaqs.com/2009/03/17/naked-agile/.

  • http://www.pureschmaltz.com/ Dschmaltz

    Great headline! There’s something that happens when any belief system ‘gets adopted’ that seems to distill into exactly more of the same, even if one belief system is polar opposite to another. The great challenge seems to be in how organizations adopt more than what they adopt. When they embrace anything enthusiastically, evangelically, they’re in deep trouble but imagine themselves ‘saved at last.’ And many organizations seem incapable of adopting anything without a fog of enthusiasm and evangelism surrounding it.

  • http://www.pureschmaltz.com Dschmaltz

    Great headline! There’s something that happens when any belief system ‘gets adopted’ that seems to distill into exactly more of the same, even if one belief system is polar opposite to another. The great challenge seems to be in how organizations adopt more than what they adopt. When they embrace anything enthusiastically, evangelically, they’re in deep trouble but imagine themselves ‘saved at last.’ And many organizations seem incapable of adopting anything without a fog of enthusiasm and evangelism surrounding it.

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  • http://agilefaqs.com/nareshjain.html Naresh Jain

    Franco, I’m not saying Agile is new. As Mary Poppendieck says “Agile existed even before waterfall and somehow waterfall became the defacto for software development”. Agile is new for folks who have forgotten how software was originally developed. Before IEEE came along and said software is an engineering declipse similar to manufacturing.

  • http://agilefaqs.com/nareshjain.html Naresh Jain

    Franco, I’m not saying Agile is new. As Mary Poppendieck says “Agile existed even before waterfall and somehow waterfall became the defacto for software development”. Agile is new for folks who have forgotten how software was originally developed. Before IEEE came along and said software is an engineering declipse similar to manufacturing.

  • http://www.dennisstevens.com/ Dennis Stevens

    Nice deck. I like most of this. However, I think it is irresponsible to propose that Engineering principles and Requirements management are not important in Agile. You can’t reliably deliver great software without solid engineering principles. Requirements at the Epic level are still required for most companies. It is the responsible application of engineering and the progressive elaboration of requirements that make agile work. An absence of Software Engineering and Requirements Management is just irresponsible development.

  • http://www.dennisstevens.com Dennis Stevens

    Nice deck. I like most of this. However, I think it is irresponsible to propose that Engineering principles and Requirements management are not important in Agile. You can’t reliably deliver great software without solid engineering principles. Requirements at the Epic level are still required for most companies. It is the responsible application of engineering and the progressive elaboration of requirements that make agile work. An absence of Software Engineering and Requirements Management is just irresponsible development.

  • Scott Duncan

    For 50’s era info and onward about iterative methods used in milityary projects, see the Larman and Basili article at http://www2.umassd.edu/SWPI/xp/articles/r6047.pdf.

    Also, don’t confuse “engineering” with “manufacturing.”  There are lots of engineering disciplines that are not manufacturing related.  The field of Production Engineering is about manufacturing, but Design Engineering is not, for example.  The push toward (software) engineering was a reaction to the increasing ease with which code could, physically, be put together, compiled and run.  The latter marginalized some of the early manual QA/QC techniques (e.g., desk checking), leaving nothing to replace them except a code-and-fix cycle.

    Unfortunately, production engineering has sometimes been used as the model for efforts to bring engineering ideas into software.  For interesting ideas on engineering, ready the work of Henry Petrosky and Billy Vaughn Koen.  Or look at http://www.natkeeran.ca/EMethod/EngMethod2-Characteristics.html.

  • Scott Duncan

    For 50’s era info and onward about iterative methods used in milityary projects, see the Larman and Basili article at http://www2.umassd.edu/SWPI/xp/articles/r6047.pdf.

    Also, don’t confuse “engineering” with “manufacturing.”  There are lots of engineering disciplines that are not manufacturing related.  The field of Production Engineering is about manufacturing, but Design Engineering is not, for example.  The push toward (software) engineering was a reaction to the increasing ease with which code could, physically, be put together, compiled and run.  The latter marginalized some of the early manual QA/QC techniques (e.g., desk checking), leaving nothing to replace them except a code-and-fix cycle.

    Unfortunately, production engineering has sometimes been used as the model for efforts to bring engineering ideas into software.  For interesting ideas on engineering, ready the work of Henry Petrosky and Billy Vaughn Koen.  Or look at http://www.natkeeran.ca/EMethod/EngMethod2-Characteristics.html.

  • http://agilefaqs.com/nareshjain.html Naresh Jain

    Denis/Scott can you please help me understand what you mean by engineering? May be I’m thinking of something else when I say engineering.

    Also if you can explain why you think engineering is so important in software development?

  • http://agilefaqs.com/nareshjain.html Naresh Jain

    Denis/Scott can you please help me understand what you mean by engineering? May be I’m thinking of something else when I say engineering.

    Also if you can explain why you think engineering is so important in software development?

  • http://www.developsense.com/ Michael Bolton

    +1 on Scott’s recommendations to read Koen and Petroski.  Koen starts by saying “the engineering method is the use of heuristics to cause the best change in a poorly understood situation within the available resources…”  and then makes the claims that “the engineering solution to a problem has no reality apart from the heuristics used to obtain it, and everything in engineering is a heuristic.”  That seems, to me, to argue against form of process dogma, and in favour of Beckett’s notion:  “Try again.  Fail again.  Fail better.”

    —Michael B.

  • http://www.developsense.com Michael Bolton

    +1 on Scott’s recommendations to read Koen and Petroski.  Koen starts by saying “the engineering method is the use of heuristics to cause the best change in a poorly understood situation within the available resources…”  and then makes the claims that “the engineering solution to a problem has no reality apart from the heuristics used to obtain it, and everything in engineering is a heuristic.”  That seems, to me, to argue against form of process dogma, and in favour of Beckett’s notion:  “Try again.  Fail again.  Fail better.”

    —Michael B.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Alex-Martin/100000037786563 Alex Martin

    i studied and after that i express my opinion

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Alex-Martin/100000037786563 Alex Martin

    i studied and after that i express my opinion


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