On Happy Days, there was an episode where Fonzie jumped a shark tank on his motorcycle. Many people consider that the “high water” mark of the show, and believed that once the show reached that pinnacle, it had no where to go but down. There is even a website, JumpTheShark.com, devoted to chronicalling when TV shows start to go downhill.
That said, I’d like to share a few facts:
– Agile was originally a cosortium of a bunch of like-minded groups: Scrum, DSDM, Crystal, and Extreme Programming. The goal was to make a bigger tent.
– The tent is getting bigger each year. You can now google for “Agile RUP” or “Agile CMMI” and get a considerable number of results. The agile conference grew to 1,100 people last year and I believe is predicted at 1,500 this year. Instead of a band of rebels, it’s now ‘hip’ to be agile. (That means it will attract an entirely different group of people than it did four years ago, when the only people who knew what agile were active readers of the wikiwikiweb.)
– Jon Kohl and I have been concerned about the state of the agile world for about a year now.
– Yesterday, Elisabeth Hendrickson posted Inside the Secret Fears of Agilists, which stated as a top concern that the big global outsourcing companies would adopt Agile as a buzzword, just like Service-Oriented, Business Intelligence, Global Sourcing, and ‘Enterprise’
– My friends who are certified scrum masters are now using the term “use what works” to justify studying for the PMP exam
– Yesterday, my collegue Paul, the web manager, threw his copy of XP 1st Edition into the trash can, telling me “We’re doing back to BUFD” (Big Up-Front Design)
There are a lot of reasons this is happening, and I would like to discuss it, but first I’d like to say that I think Jon and Elisabeth are spot-on. Go read them.
As for me, more to come later.