An interview with an Agile Coach.
Part 1: Part 2: Some gems: They were posted one “sprint” apart. 🤣 “It’s really Waterfall with meetings every two weeks.” “That’s Greg. His birthday is on day 2 of sprint 7.” “We don’t even define requirements until after production.” “I lost my job because I’m a horrible developer. Now I’m an Agile coach.” “Always change. Never finish.” “Folks who don’t have anything valuable to add deserve meetings.” “I’m so used to it, I don’t even hear the Waterfall.
Robin Message on how Scrum goes awry: The Product Owner in a scrum is typically someone from the business or product side of the business. They are not there to advocate for technical priorities; and indeed, this is fair enough, because someone needs to advocate for business and customer value. Scrum intends them to be “responsible” and “accountable” for the product backlog, and therefore to work with others to create backlog items, but in practice, they are typically the sole person creating the backlog.
Robin Message on the mismatch between the parts of the agile manifesto concerned with technical craft and those concerned with project management: So, to summarise, almost every method and technique that was represented at the Agile manifesto was concerned with technical craft. XP is a methodology for software development, and as such, seven of the twelve practices are about how the software is written (pair programming, TDD, continuous integration, refactoring, simple design, system metaphor, coding standards).
Joel Spolsky: But the rules and procedures only work when nothing goes wrong. Various “data-backed Web site” consulting companies sprouted up in the last couple of years and filled their ranks by teaching rank amateurs the fourteen things you need to know to create a data-backed Web site (“here’s a select statement, kid, build a Web site”). The last line cracked me up. The moral of the story: Beware of Methodologies.
Steve Yegge: Up until maybe a year ago, I had a pretty one-dimensional view of so-called “Agile” programming, namely that it’s an idiotic fad-diet of a marketing scam making the rounds as yet another technological virus implanting itself in naive programmers who’ve never read “No Silver Bullet”, the kinds of programmers who buy extended warranties and self-help books and believe their bosses genuinely care about them as people, the kinds of programmers who attend conferences to make friends and who don’t know how to avoid eye contact with leaflet-waving fanatics in airports and who believe writing shit on index cards will suddenly make software development easier.
A reply to someone saying someone else had a bad experience with Scrum because they did Scrum wrong: That sounds ridiculously similar to people hanging on to communism/socialism: “the principles are sound, it just hasn’t been implemented as intended”. Except, just like communism, Scrum has never and will never be implemented “as intended” because that’s contrary to our collective evolutionary gifts, and against a developer’s desire to find satisfaction in good craftsmanship.