Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Agile2014 - Day 1

Yesterday was the first full day of Agile2014. In general it was a pretty good day.

The original keynote speaker, Aneesh Chopra, apparently had to cancel. His replacement, Sam Guckenheimer, provided an overview of Microsoft's journey to agile. It was an ok case study with some interesting information, but it wasn't a motivational keynote to get us all charged up. Talking to some of the organizers later, I found out they made a conscious decision not to pay for a headliner keynote speaker.

One of the more interesting talks was with Ron Jeffries and Chet Hendrickson in which they took questions from the audience. Everything from is TDD dead? (it isn't) to budgeting around technical debt. Ron and Chet showed their extensive years of experience. One point they hit on is that agile is really about the team figuring it out. The team has to own the process and make it work for them. Using something like a formal Scrum approach should only be your starting point.

Mike Cottmeyer did a good presentation on why agile adoption fails. He has a nice write-up on his website here and posted the slides here.

The last presentation I attended was with Jesse Fewell and Dana Wright. They walked us through a more engaging way to prepare for meetings & events based on Dana's book.

On the exhibit floor was the usual group of vendors, mostly tool vendors. Automating testing and continuous integration were big...and DevOps was being thrown around alot. I was reminded that Agile is a software conference, not a project management conference like PMI's Global Congress so the focus was really on software development.

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