Agile2007 Day 3 – Flippin’ Awesome!

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A Framework for Agile Leadership

At the executive level of any well-run organization, effective communications and planning are helped by framing discussions with formal frameworks. The frameworks themselves vary by the thousands, and an entire industry of business books is propped up by this idea. The fundamental idea is that you put a project or idea or something on a graph and look at where it falls.

This session offers measurement frameworks for organizations, projects, and corporate strategy. C*Os live and breath these things and being able to use a framework like this in discussions with your C*O will help your Agile adoption curve get steeper.

The frameworks offered are beyond the scope of what I will write up here, but suffice to say I will definitely add these tools to my tool belt.

How Much Architecture is Needed for JITA?

Just In Time Architecture (JITA) is a big topic at this conference and while passing the open space boards I saw an open space discussion proposed between Allan Shalloway and Jim Shore on the meaning of JITA and what is enough? This conversation was compelling enough to cause me to break form the regular conference track and sit in on the discussion.

Allan recorded the session as a podcast by putting a recorder in the middle of our round table. I will be watching Net Objectives for a link to the podcast. This was a great discussion of abstract ideas, and I came away from the table with a serious respect for the brain power in the huddle around me. There is a reason these guys are rock stars, they are brilliant, and they find the ability to abstract everyday life into higher ideas and patterns.

Nuggets:

  • Any development effort of 10^1 people probably does not need anyone designated for architectural responsibility. As the number of people in the project approaches 10^2, the need for designated architecture increases exponentially.
  • System complexity is easily modeled as a fractal problem
  • Entity interaction within a system above the class level may be thought of as “architecture”. Entity interaction at and below the level of classes may be considered design.  This includes classic design patterns and specific algorithms.

Agile Coaches Clinic

It is now the next day and the session I attended after this one overshadows this so much I forgot what happened here. Also, I have 3 glasses of wine at the Google conference last night and I just forgot.

The Bridge Pattern, an Extemporaneous Discussion of Awesomeness

 This was amazing and the results of this discussion will be the subject of a future post. I asked Allan Shalloway for some help in understanding the Bridge Pattern which my patterns study group at work is learning. He graciously agreed to meet me and when I arrived at our agreed upon meeting to find Allan had brought Jim Shore and Ken Pugh to the meeting. Dig it? I have 3 published authors on the subject or object oriented design sitting there getting ready to tear into my study group problem. The amount of brain power around me was damn scary, frankly.

I laid out the pattern as I understood it followed by the problem and coding assignment we were given to solve (thank you Matt and Tom). Lastly, I drew the solution I thought I saw  for the problem, identified the incongruence I felt in my solution and stood back. It was like throwing a steak to a pack of starving Doberman pinchers.

I spent the next 3 hours with these people discussing not just various design patterns, but overarching concepts of Agile. I remain blown away. The results of the session itself are worthy of discussion on their own outside the context of a daily review. so you’ll just have to wait for that recap. I have a headache.

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