Ravi Mohan's Blog

Monday, May 08, 2006

Abandoning Agile

My friend Yogi said in a chat session recently, "I havent seen your blog entry renouncing all things agile!"

Yogi, your wish is my command. here it is.

Bill Caputo said it much better than I ever could. So I'll borrow from his blog entry.

"...In short,... I am formally retiring from Agile Evangelism (something I lost the heart for some time ago), and simply becoming an Agile Private-Citizen. Thus, I expect that the tone of my writing will shift somewhat as I no longer care (and truthfully haven't for some time) whether the world adopts XP -- or even whether anyone does -- I am simply interested in building software to the best of my ability, working with others of like mind, and flat-out outperforming others using the techniques and tools that I have learned how to use over the past several years. That anyone familiar with XP would immediately recognize its strong impact on the nature of our software development project is almost (but not quite) irrelevant to that goal. ..."

Of course the difference between Bill's position and mine is that he still continues to use XP. He just doesn't evangelize it. The kind of problems on which I'll be working for the rest of the year (and hopefully, for the rest of my life) shift the context of development so much that most of the practices and assumptions of XP/Agile just don't make sense anymore. The only surviving practices are the constantly growing test suite (no more test first) run periodically and a very attenuated Continous Integration step. Where Bill is an Agile Private Citizen, I am an Agile Ex-Citizen.

I have also stepped out of the Agile Software Community Of India, a non profit society of which I am a founding member. I may still need to attend one final meeting to elect the next year's office holders, and help resolve some residual organizational issues but that's it. I am done with all things Agile.

It is a great relief. Agile is "hot" these days and all sorts of weirdos crawl out of the wooodwork to scramble on the "Agile" platform and caper and scream to attract "agile consulting" assignments. The politics is sickening. Now I can just shut these folks out and focus on what is more important, writing good software.

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