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Practices for Scaling Lean and Agile Development: Large, Multisite, and Offshore Product Development with Large-Scale Scrum (Agile Software Development Series) Paperback – 26 Jan 2010
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From the Back Cover
Lean and Agile Development for Large-Scale Products: Key Practices for Sustainable Competitive Success
Increasingly, large product-development organizations are turning to lean thinking, agile principles and practices, and large-scale Scrum to sustainably and quickly deliver value and innovation. Drawing on their long experience leading and guiding lean and agile adoptions for large, multisite, and offshore product development, internationally recognized consultant and best-selling author Craig Larman and former leader of the agile transformation at Nokia Networks Bas Vodde share the key action tools needed for success.
- Frameworks for large-scale Scrum for multihundred-person product groups
- Testing and building quality in
- Product management and the end of the “contract game” between business and R&D
- Envisioning a large release, and planning for multiteam development
- Low-quality legacy code: why it’s created, and how to stop it
- Continuous integration in a large multisite context
- Agile architecting
- Multisite or offshore development
- Contracts and outsourced development
In a competitive environment that demands ever-faster cycle times and greater innovation, the practices inspired by lean thinking and agile principles are ever-more relevant. Practices for Scaling Lean & Agile Development will help people realize a lean enterprise―and deliver on the significant benefits of agility.
In addition to the action tools in this text, see the companion book Scaling Lean & Agile Development: Thinking and Organizational Tools for Large-Scale Scrumfor complementary foundation tools.
About the Author
Craig Larman is a management and product development consultant in enterprise-level adoption and use of lean development, agile principles and practices, and large scale Scrum in large, multisite, and offshore development. He served as chief scientist at Valtech, an international consulting and agile offshore outsourcing company. His books include the best-sellers Agile and Iterative Development: A Manager’s Guide (Addison-Wesley, 2004) and Applying UML and Patterns, Third Edition (Prentice Hall, 2005).
Bas Vodde works as an independent product development consultant and large scale Scrum coach. For several years he led the agile and Scrum enterprise-wide adoption initiative at Nokia Networks. He is passionate about improving product development, and an avid student of organizational, team management, and product development research, and remains an active developer. Bas is the coauthor (with Craig) of the companion book Scaling Lean & Agile Development (Addison-Wesley, 2009).
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
This is a very good book on agile development, unfortunately, inappropriately named.
1) Readers who bought this book, probably are interested in the additional stuff on multisite and offshore, and not the everything about Agile Development. Thus, this book can be, should be a lot thinner.
2) The book contains lots of good examples. Unfortunately, I have to jump around the book to read them. Thus, the organization of the content can be improved.
It has clear, practical advice. In particular, the clarification of the dangers of component teams is particularly valuable as well as communication patterns between teams.
As an Agile coach, I have personally applied some of the patterns with success and sadly have witnessed many of the anti-patterns play out.
The cover page of the book is quite different with fractal art in it. The explanation given is also unique. It denotes that, there is no 'fractal' or 'best' practice but only adequate practice depending on specific context and situation of the enterprise. Practice should always be improved upon, even when relevant to a new context, though the underlying principles do not change. Even these fractal principles, practiced at team level may not work at enterprise level.
I liked the legacy code chapter the most as I was able to relate to it better, working in a legacy product with several millions of LOC. The authors argue that the only two reasons for legacy code are poor development skills and unrealistic deadlines with fixed content. Solution for the first issue is continual learning. The second one is quite tricky. It is suggested that organisations could be transparent and collaborate with the customers by involving them in the product development - reporting the development status to the key customers iteration by iteration with a release burn down chart and updated PBL, asking them feedback on priorities and modified goals , and giving probabilistic estimates. Not sure how this works if the product has multiple customers with varying priorities or is a new product with market pressure and no customers.
It is recommended to gradually improve the code than to replace it as rewriting the code is only a quick fix solution. Also, I would have liked to see some code review practices like pair-programming being discussed in detail.
There is a difference between knowing the name of something and knowing something. So is the difference between doing agile and being agile. Command and control management thinking combined with predictive planning is doing agile, while serving teams, using a backlog and adaptive planning is being agile. Planning large scale development in agile is simpler than traditional approaches, which is usually unacceptable for management who believes in extensive planning before starting actual work. Top down planning and control is not particularly effective in systems with variability and discovery because the plans assume something relatively static or deterministic and the approach grows even less effective as these non-linear systems grow larger. A solution to this problem is the emergence of order from self-organising scrum feature teams as Agile planning emphasis continual learning and adapting.
The perfect challenge is to have the potential to release, completely done, at the end of any iteration. To start with Definition of Done (DoD) should at least have programming and some sort of testing. Overtime DoD expands by automating and expanding the team cross-functionality. What is measured and rewarded influence people's behavior. It is highly recommended to look at overall product metrics such as business case realisation, lead time, value delivered, overall faults and integration problems promote a total product performance instead of individual rewards.
By lowering the water level in lake more and more rocks become visible. The water level, in agile, symbolises amount of inventory, WIP, batch size, handoff, cycle time. Eg when the release cycle is reduced from 2 year to 4 week cycle, big rocks like lack of automated tests and effective integration will be visible. Lowering the water level futher makes more deeper issues visible. This clearly denotes that Kaizen (continuous improvement) has no finish line.
The book provides lot of useful ideas for testing, coordination, product backlog, PBI, multisite and offshore development. This is a good book to be in the library of every team to know about the different practices that can be adopted in agile development. These practices can then be improved upon based on the context and environment and adopted. My review comments on the comapanion book can be found in [...].
The first book presents theoretical and philosophical underpinnings for agile and lean development. The second book presents a survey of practices relevant to all aspects of the process of developing software at scale, presented by two guys who bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table.
The above was taken from a longer review on the Rally Agile blog - you can see the rest of it there ([...] and then follow the links for the agile blog).
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