Posts tagged 'agile'
Product Roadmaps Relaunched by C. Todd Lombardo, Bruce McCarthy, Evan Ryan, Michael Connors. To be honest, I’ve built a lot of terrible roadmaps over the years. Some resembled Gantt-charts and came with work packages, milestones, and deadlines. Unsurprisingly, these created an unjustified sense of security and commitment. Others were too lofty and vague, needed lots of explaining and still left behind confused and irritated audiences. I came to try various formats and templates, adapted and tinkered to address some of these issues, but I am yet to uncover the holy grail of roadmapping.
Back in the day, I once attended a big software conference somewhere in Germany. As chance would have it, I struck up a conversation there with an agile coach who was working for a big customer of the product that I was serving for as Product Owner at the. During the course of the event, we would occasionally bump into each other again and chat about our respective challenges: Me, shepherding a medium-sized product team at an international software conglomerate, and him leading the agile transformation of one of the most stereotypically conservative organizations in the world: The federal government of Germany.
Middlemarch by Mary Ann Evans (aka George Elliot). “Surely,” said Dorothea, “it is better to spend money in finding out how men can make the most of the land which supports them all, than in keeping dogs and horses only to gallop over it. It is not a sin to make yourself poor in performing experiments for the good of all.” — Mary Ann Evans (aka George Elliot), Middlemarch (1871)
“How long will this take?” is a tricky question. Most of us are terrible at estimating which is why organizations often make decisions based on either wildly inflated guesses, or wishful but unrealistic thinking. Furthermore, estimating itself takes time and binds resources that we could invest in actually doing the work instead. Intuitive Prediction by Daniel Kahnemann and Amos Tversky. Advocates of the #noEstimates movement argue that it is in fact possible to get the benefits of estimating without having to pay the (full) price, and they get a lot of traction these days.
In many instances software architecture is less a product of deliberate design and more an accidental result of countless interactions between people. Or, as Eric Raymond put it more pointedly: “If you have four groups working on a compiler, you’ll get a 4-pass compiler.” How Do Committees Invent? by Mel Conway. This idea was originally introduced by Mel Conway in his 1967 paper “How Do Committees Invent?