The Great Methodology Paradox

07 Dec

Hello All,

It has been a busy couple of weeks and I have not got to post things as fast as I would have liked.  This new presentation is on one of my favorite subjects… Methodologies.  More specifically… Agile.

I’m not sure how this opinion will be treated or recieved, but I’m very excited to here from all of you about my thinking on the subject.

This video is a little longer than some… around 38 minutes, so set some time aside and enjoy!  I did have to break the video up into 3 parts.

Part 1:


Part 2:


Part 3:


More to come…



Posted by on December 7, 2011 in Opinion


Tags: , , , ,

6 responses to “The Great Methodology Paradox

  1. PM Hut

    December 8, 2011 at 10:11 am

    Hi Mike,

    These are great videos on project management! It would also be nice if you can publish them as articles!

    Thanks for sharing!

    • techmana

      December 8, 2011 at 10:04 pm

      A lot of times I do articles, but these are long ones. Next up is my History of Programming, which is a 7 part series and that is coming in the next couple of days… then the infamous 2012 Predictions.

  2. PM Hut

    December 9, 2011 at 10:20 am

    I will be looking forward to your history of programming, I have a programming background myself…

  3. Michael Thuma

    December 30, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    Great videos. Agreed. Methodologies have to be considered wisely.

    Ok, the results of Software development did not improve over last, this is observable. Tom De Marco started at a time when 70% of the projects failed, 20% did not meet not expectation and 10% shipped results, ok I tend to say, these are the ones who never have been started;).

    The term Software Engineering has been introduced as a ‘One Word’ with the goal to market the idea that Software Engineering is more than programming, of course to relate the development to project management. This was a major step. This dramatically increased the projects that delivered results, independent from the results, but they did not fail. This was a breakthrough on one hand but introduced the devil through the back door. When have projects been a success, of course the first time, because ‘managers’ have been made responsible for results and had been given instruments to achieve goals and the first time someone introduces time-lines things tend to improve and become more predictable, maybe manageable but at least observable. The fact that a measurement is done is the driver for success never the measure or the quantity those are important to grab the overall status.

    For the project organization as a system observability is vital, controllable is a different story. In my opinion the breakthrough is to see software developments as work done outside the daily business, imo.

    Software is simply not a manufacturing process that allows to deliver pieces of software based on XXXpoint measures at a constant but increasing throughput related to the points (the measure). From this perspective software development has a lot to do with building houses or bridges when the comparison is a factory. I like more the idea of gardening which is of course focusing at the systems overall perspective and we hope the results structure does no turn into an English garden during the project … when it was planned to be a Frensh garden.

    Methodologies are tied to a class of technologies. Agile was a good response these days to the accepted spinning on one hand, which is imho more a result from an organization that allows the developers and the business to ‘gold plate’ requirements in an everlasting waltz outside the real demands perspective and on the other hand the methodologies, all of them waterfall also the RUP is in the end a waterfall. The waterfall is the basic process pattern, but simply says – think before you work and test what you implemented before you ship it and please ship. I think Royce has shown a very simplified picture and the idea to throw a requirement and redefine it is not bad. This simple model was adopted to straight by to many and then evolved, the evolutions have been well document by Berry Boehm. The idea is never false, but what happened and of this still happens, that technologies, tools and methodologies become tied a lot stronger with the times, specialize.

    If you think of Java … Java, Scrum and development relying on infrastructure belong together today. btw: The Scrum was the best idea imo, but has become the most mis-tread/abused idea in a very short time.Especially this combination is a very commercialized Enterprise development strategy but can perform well. The Scrum is imo a backport of Agile ideas to teams that have to solve a complexity of before Y2k developments sizes at team level. The hierarchical Enterprise Scrum is the abuse … you see it teams following the Scrum are doing hard to align with others a lot more, the focus and the isolation ware very effective punctual but from the overall progress perspective I doubt it is a good thing for many teams that work towards one goal.

    Happy New Year Mike!

    • Michael Thuma

      December 30, 2011 at 3:29 pm

      Sry …
      Software development is simply not a manufacturing process …


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