Agile Development Practices 2009


Coaching Agility and Producing Value

Why do some agile communities succeed while others are struggling or failing? Communities that struggle often do so because they are prescriptively follow processes instead of descriptively adopting practices and principles that amplify their existing strengths and address their challenges. David Hussman shares successful coaching techniques he uses to grow sustainable agility that lasts beyond the early iterations or the first few agile projects.

David Hussman, DevJam

Critical Incidents While Testing in Scrum

Scrum frameworks deliver working code in time-boxed sprints. Many communities find Scrum to be a wonderful balance between discipline and agility because it tames turbulence and focuses teams. However, Scrum requires dramatic rethinking of the traditional role of testing in a development project. Rob Sabourin explores critical testing incidents in Scrum projects-key turning points, difficult decisions, major problems, brilliant successes, and dismal failures.

Robert Sabourin,

Dealing With Defects: The Agile Way

In agile development, software defects are everyone's responsibility. One tenet of agile is that defects should be fixed "as soon as possible" rather than documented as an inventory of "stuff" that doesn't work yet. Janet Gregory examines the sometimes vexing question agile teams have for dealing with a defect-should we "fix it now and forget it," "fix it now and track it," or "record and track it?" She explores why, regardless of which choice is made, you should write a test case to verify the fix is correct.

Janet Gregory, DragonFire Inc.

Debug Your Mind

Every day, we make important decisions and try to solve critical problems in our work. Unfortunately, our decision-making and problem-solving processes often are based on a faulty memory and our emotional state at the time. We tend to ignore crucial facts and fixate on irrelevant details because of where and when they occur, or whether they are brightly colored-especially if they are brightly colored.

Andrew Hunt, Pragmatic Programmers
Determining Business Value

Agility focuses on delivering business value to the customers as rapidly as possible, and user stories are a common way to describe the features and functions that define value incrementally. However, to concentrate on delivering most business value earlier in the project, we must determine and assign the relative business value to each of those stories. Through lecture and interactive exercises, Ken Pugh presents two methods for quickly estimating and assigning business value for features and stories.

Ken Pugh, Net Objectives

Embracing Kanban: An Experience Report

Early in 2004, Chris Shinkle's company began adopting agile practices. Unfortunately, agile did not have the desired cultural impact within their organization-and the adoption floundered. Several years later, Chris found himself coaching a fellow project lead several months into a difficult project. The project team had experienced developers, but faced a seemingly impossible deadline. Discontent and frustration were rampant and something needed to change. Chris decided that a Kanban implementation could improve the situation.

Chris Shinkle, SEP INC
Focused Continuous Testing

Continuous testing is a practice that involves automatically running tests after every program change. Just as modern IDEs provide instant feedback about the code's syntactic correctness, continuous testing gives you instant feedback about the semantic correctness of the code. Continuous testing has a profound impact on the way you use test-driven development (TDD) and continuous integration (CI). TDD provides rapid feedback through the frequent execution of a small set of related tests.

Rod Coffin, Improving Enterprises
Going Agile - How It Affects People, Teams and Process

Agile development provides the opportunity for new levels of productivity and value for software delivery-yet the agile approach brings new challenges that impact people, teams, and processes. Joachim Herschmann describes how a traditional waterfall-oriented development organization can become more agile and how software delivery can be transformed into a managed, efficient, and predictable business process.

Joachim Herschmann, Borland Software
Growing Pains: Why Scaling Scrum and XP Hurts - and What You Can Do

Do you have a large scale program with multiple agile teams? If so, you may have experienced some of the growing pains we encountered when we scaled Scrum and XP-conflicting priorities across teams, handling dependencies across multiple backlogs, planning a release date for teams with changing velocities and backlogs, inconsistent technical practices, and ineffective cross-team communication. Ed Kraay presents his organization's experience working on a large, complex Scrum program with multiple, interrelated Scrum teams.

Ed Kraay, SolutionsIQ
Instill Scrum Values to Build High-Performance Teams

Your teams are using agile practices well and starting to understand the principles behind them, but they are still not high-performing. Although they're getting a bit better with each sprint and they're meeting commitments, they are not producing the great results you thought agile was supposed to create. Come learn the framework for guiding teams to those great results using the Scrum values as the root and ground of the journey.

Lyssa Adkins, Cricketwing Consulting


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