Dark Agile Manifesto: Is the Criticism of Agile Development Fact or Fiction?

February 06, 2015

Dark-Agile-Manifesto-Anti-Agile-Manifesto-Intland-Software-336x336 Dark Agile Manifesto: Is the Criticism of Agile Development Fact or Fiction? agile An Anti -Agile movement has formed, its signature can be found on blog posts and comments across the net, downplaying the value of Agile, criticising aspects of its design. We look to the truth of the criticism found, specifically within the Anti-Agile Manifesto and the Dark Agile Manifesto.

On the face of it, the Anti-Agile Manifesto sounds like a challenge to the Agile Manifesto, however upon further investigation you will find that the website is actually about Scrum. Every one of the Anti-Agile Manifesto points are actually criticisms of the Scrum terminology, not the Agile Manifesto. Terms such as Epics, Stories, Sprints, Stand-ups are all part of a set of terms designed to seperate every day project management terminology from that of Scrum Software Development. For example:-

The author wrote, “epics are really just projects”

  • Epics might well be projects, but not just any ordinary project but rather a specific type, – subtype of project. So what separates Scrum projects from any other type of project besides the terminology? Is it that different that it requires its own terminology?

The Anti-Agile Manifasto suggesting that these terms are just marketing speak and have zero value and that there is no difference between Epics and projects.

Firstly Projects come above Epics on the hierarchical tree, an Epic is just part of a project, – so straight away this differentiates them. In fact most of the Scrum terms work in the same way, used to describe different pieces of work, seperating them into smaller manageable pieces based on the time frame it takes to complete each piece. Why? Well, its all about motivation theory and the relationship between motivation and time, essentially its all about how to make the team more productive by creating a sense of urgency. This is also the main purpose of Stand-ups and Time boxing.

The Dark Agile Manifesto is a different beast, two academics investigating Agile development from a software engineering perspective. There is a much reduced role for software engineers in an Agile world simply because Agile places emphasis on Emergent, incremental design over the Waterfall, pre-design role usually assigned to Software Engineers. There are real threats to successful Agile Adoption from a engineering standpoint however highlighted in this article, however – do also read the comments afterwards.

The Gartner Hype Cycle referred to in the Dark Agile Manifesto is not a criticism of Agile at all but rather a compliment to the marketing efforts in the Agile world. Software analysts must see past the hype and evaluate all the available options on the market.

codeBeamer ALM supports Scrum, Scrumban and Agile – Waterfall development; as well as any manner of other Hybrid Agile Software Development. Whatever you use, you win with codeBeamer ALM software either way.

 

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Eva Johnson

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Eva is an Economist (MSc) and also holds an MBA in Marketing Communications. She has over 10 years of experience in journalism, digital media communication and project management working with several multinational companies and governmental institutions. You will find her blogs posts on a variety of subjects from Agile-Waterfall Hybrid, Scrum to DevOps.

Eva Johnson has written 131 posts for Intland Software.

3 Comments. Leave new

I prefer http://www.halfarsedagilemanifesto.org/

Manifesto for Half-Arsed Agile Software Development

We have heard about new ways of developing software by
paying consultants and reading Gartner reports. Through
this we have been told to value:

Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
and we have mandatory processes and tools to control how those
individuals (we prefer the term ‘resources’) interact

Working software over comprehensive documentation
as long as that software is comprehensively documented

Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
within the boundaries of strict contracts, of course, and subject to rigorous change control

Responding to change over following a plan
provided a detailed plan is in place to respond to the change, and it is followed precisely

That is, while the items on the left sound nice
in theory, we’re an enterprise company, and there’s
no way we’re letting go of the items on the right.

Reply

you wrote:
———————————————————————–
> seperating them into smaller manageable pieces
> based on the time frame it takes to complete each
> piece. Why? Well, its all about motivation theory
> and the relationship between motivation and time,
> essentially its all about how to make the team more
> productive by creating a sense of urgency. This is
> also the main purpose of Stand-ups and Time boxing.

Thanks for your honesty! This is the first time that I’ve
heard it admitted that the whole purpose of scrum is
to amp up the “sense of urgency”, thereby creating a
pressure cooker environment in order to reap short-
term gains in productivity.

The long-term side effect is burn-out for the best and
most conscience developers. That’ll be the legacy of
scrum after its Gartner Hype Cycle has passed.

Reply

Agile, is just a term to hide the non professionalism that came with the distress-disordered
generation hooked 24/7 in their mobile phones, which cannot articulate a statement longer than 4 words, and cannot concentrate on a task longer than 10 seconds. Stories, Epics, Poems; subterfuge for lack of concentration, ability to follow, to organize, and make order in own thoughts, lack to define, to understand and articulate a software ecosystem as a whole. …whatever.

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