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Should you go agile? Probably the most noticeable change to software process thinking in the last few years has been the appearance of the word 'agile'.
We talk of agile software methods, of how to introduce agility into a development team, or of how to resist the impending storm of agilists determined to change well-established practices.
This new movement grew out of the efforts of various people who dealt with software process in the s, found them wanting, and looked for a new approach to software process. Most of the ideas were not new, indeed many people believed that much successful software had been built that way for a long time.
There was, however, a view that these ideas had been stifled and not been treated seriously enough, particularly by people interested in software process. This essay was originally part of this movement. I originally published it in July I wrote it, like most of my essays, as part of trying to understand the topic.
I had since had conversations and read books from other people who had similar ideas about software process, but had not necessarily wanted to take the same path as Extreme Programming.
So in the essay I wanted to explore what were the similarities and differences between these methodologies. If you are interested in historic curiosities, you can read the original version of this article. Other than formatting changes the text is unaltered. My conclusion then, which I still believe now, is that there were some fundamental principles that united these methodologies, and these principles were a notable contrast from the assumptions of the established methodologies.
This essay has continued to be one of the most popular essays on my website, which means I feel somewhat bidden to keep it up to date.
In its original form the essay both explored these differences in principles and provided a survey of agile methods as I then understood them. Too much has happened with agile methods since for me to keep up with the survey part, although I do provide some links to continue your explorations.
The differences in principles still remain, and this discussion I've kept. From Nothing, to Monumental, to Agile Most software development is a chaotic activity, often characterized by the phrase "code and fix".
The software is written without much of an underlying plan, and the design of the system is cobbled together from many short term decisions. This actually works pretty well as the system is small, but as the system grows it becomes increasingly difficult to add new features to the system.
Furthermore bugs become increasingly prevalent and increasingly difficult to fix. A typical sign of such a system is a long test phase after the system is "feature complete". Such a long test phase plays havoc with schedules as testing and debugging is impossible to schedule.
The original movement to try to change this introduced the notion of methodology. These methodologies impose a disciplined process upon software development with the aim of making software development more predictable and more efficient.
They do this by developing a detailed process with a strong emphasis on planning inspired by other engineering disciplines - which is why I like to refer to them as engineering methodologies another widely used term for them is plan-driven methodologies.
Engineering methodologies have been around for a long time. They've not been noticeable for being terribly successful. They are even less noted for being popular. The most frequent criticism of these methodologies is that they are bureaucratic.
There's so much stuff to do to follow the methodology that the whole pace of development slows down. Agile methodologies developed as a reaction to these methodologies. For many people the appeal of these agile methodologies is their reaction to the bureaucracy of the engineering methodologies. These new methods attempt a useful compromise between no process and too much process, providing just enough process to gain a reasonable payoff.
The result of all of this is that agile methods have some significant changes in emphasis from engineering methods. The most immediate difference is that they are less document-oriented, usually emphasizing a smaller amount of documentation for a given task.
In many ways they are rather code-oriented: However I don't think this is the key point about agile methods. Lack of documentation is a symptom of two much deeper differences: Agile methods are adaptive rather than predictive.
Engineering methods tend to try to plan out a large part of the software process in great detail for a long span of time, this works well until things change. So their nature is to resist change.
The agile methods, however, welcome change.Below you will find five outstanding thesis statements / paper topics for “Frankenstein” by Mary Shelley that can be used as essay starters. News. Lexis Advance has been named the “Best Legal Solution” by the SIIA CODiE Awards. These premier awards for the software and information industries called out Lexis Advance® vast content, data analytics and visualization tools as cutting-edge and best in the legal industry.
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Check the model essay and then read the comments. Many people believe that social networking sites (such as.