Monday, 13 March 2017

A few notes on Dave Thomas' "Agile is Dead" talk

The talk:  Agile is Dead

A forty minute talk compressed for quick reading.

  • The title is designed to be provocative.  The actual message is a simple grip at the industries trend of turning an adjective into a noun.  Which was done partly to sell you something, training, consulting, books, conferences, ..
  • Dave Thomas was part of the original meetup that produced the agile manifesto.
  • The talk is mostly a rallying call to remember that the original agile manifesto was focused on principles/values and not techniques.  It was called the 'Manifesto for Agile Software Development' and not the agile manifesto for a reason.
  • He points out that every rule/recommendation/advice will fail in some circumstances.  Thus beware of anybody who says 'always do X'.
  • The core technique within agile is simply the 'do/measure/adapt' cycle, with one caveat that is sometimes forgotten.  When two or more options exist that appear equal, choose the one that is more open to change.