Friday, January 25, 2008

Great blog on "realistic" agile

Scott Ambler has recently started a blog Agile Software Development at Scale. Finally, an established authority on agile is providing advice on how could you to apply agile in a variety of real-world situations. Now this might seem like a funny statement from somebody whose blog is titled "Agile Consulting", but in my opinion a large portion of the agile community is too concerned with purity to be truly effective in a large number of real business world situations. This is not to say that agile is not full of incredibly useful material. The majority of development approaches and tools that I employ are almost always based on agile techniques. (CRC cards, agile modeling, velocity, release and iteration plans, test driven development, continuous integration, etc.)
What makes Scott Ambler's blog so refreshing (and much of his work on agile in general) is that it contains great advice on how to take all the great tools and techniques offered by agile and apply them to full program delivery, large-scale solutions, offshore, fixed-price engagements, and many other circumstances. Many agile purists simply throw up their hands in defeat when faced with one of these situations saying that "unless you follow practice number xx, you aren't agile". Which of course in my opinion is missing the point, which is how to apply agile techniques and common everyday situations that we find ourselves in.

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