Buzz: East Agile in Vietnam

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 18 Dec 2010 at 14:34

"East Agile ...has retained its firm commitment to pair programming and a rigorous application of Agile process ...counting among its clients twitter.com ...and jibe.com."

http://alkimie.com/?p=184

Agile Estimation - The East Agile Way

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Posted by Anonymous on 04 Nov 2010 at 06:19

Agile Estimation Of Iterations

If you haven’t done so already, take a moment to read the blog on Reliable Estimates Using Agile.

In this blog, I will talk about the actual process of estimating an iteration and specifically how we do it at East Agile. I had the chance to take a class with Mike Cohn (right) and he is really good at explaining the estimation process. His book on estimation can be found on Amazon.

Estimating against a project that hasn’t been accepted (bidding, ROI analysis, etc.) is left for another blog.

Agile Estimation

Before You Start

Once again, lets make sure that you have everything you need to start estimation. So:

  • You are a member of the team.

  • You know your availability and all your team members availability.

  • You’ve studied and understand the...

Reliable Estimates Using Agile

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Posted by Anonymous on 30 Jul 2010 at 19:09

Reliable Estimates Using Agile

Estimation is actually quite easy as long as you keep your expectations under control and follow the rules.

Reliability and Accuracy

Reliable Estimates that are Useful and Believable

Everyone wants reliable estimates that are useful and believable. An estimate is reliable when the team can assure they can deliver the User Story on time (“Acts of god” don’t count). Always delivering on time builds trust and reduces risk for the customer.

A useful and believable estimate is an estimate that isn’t obviously overly cautious and allows the product owner to plan their releases.

Someone could ask the team “How long will it take you to write this blog on estimation” and the team could say “4 years”. Reliable? Yes. Believable. No. Useful? No. What is the product...

"Managing" a Project to Success Using Agile

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Posted by Anonymous on 26 Jul 2010 at 19:51

Agile tools shine at managing projects and providing quality. But what is required to “manage” a project to success?

What is the purpose of a project?

The purpose of a project is to provide a deliverable: a product or service. A deliverable is defined using specified requirements. Quality is meeting the specified requirements using measurements based on quantitative objective evidence.

To provide a deliverable, the following are required:

  • Tools necessary to provide the deliverable such as buildings, wrenches, computers, specifications, education material, etc.
  • Instructions provided by operation procedures, manuals, safety standards, specifications, requirements, etc.
  • Qualifications of those who are providing the deliverable. Are the people qualified? Are they being trained so they...

East Agile and Agile Tools

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Posted by Anonymous on 21 Jul 2010 at 13:01

One of the great aspects of Agile is that it can be continually reviewed and improved through retrospection. At East Agile, we apply Scrum, an Agile management process, but with a few changes. Agile itself is a collection of tools that are available to Agile users (Pair Programming, Standup meetings, Retrospective Meetings, Test Driven Development, etc.). XP (http://www.agilealliance.org/), Scrum (http://www.scrumalliance.org/ ) and Crystal (http://alistair.cockburn.us/Crystal+methodologies ) are examples of branded systems that draw from the set of Agile tools available. As such, there is nothing wrong, and it is quite Agile, to draw the best from these branded Agile systems (just as the founders of Agile did when they choose which tools were most Agile when engineering).

Scrum, as...

Why Paired Programming?

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 20 Jul 2010 at 20:18

It is very important for us to not compromise on paired programming.

eXtreme Programming, orXP, (especially at East Agile) is an engineering process designed to create a consistent, reliable, scalable and low risk software development environment that reduces risks especially in already unstructured, uncertain and risky business ventures.Not doing full paired programming can introduce the potential to complete a project faster, but also introduces a very significant risk of catastrophic failure.We never choose to make the speed in exchange for substantially increased risk.

That is not to stay that we must pair program 100% of the time. There will be timeswhen it makes sense for a team to splittheir focus or for individuals to work alone.Examplesof this include (1) reading and...

A Mobile Phone App Specification

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 30 Mar 2010 at 10:06

The following cards define the specification for a simple taxi cab trip tracking application for a mobile phone platform. This is the sort of thing we could implement easily across multiple platforms (iPhone, Android, Blackberry, Symbian, and Palm WebOS) using custom code and tools like Rhomobile's Rhodes framework.

Look at these cards from two perspectives. First, what do you think of the idea? If a lot of people like it, we might make it. Second, consider that this is typical of the detail we need before we start working with a client to begin an engagement. We would take diagrams like these, break them into small, prioritized user stories and features, then start development that same afternoon.

This is the main screen for the application.

There was a step before this next...

Screen Recording is the new Screen Shot

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 05 Mar 2010 at 12:41

For agile software developers, Apple's new Quicktime 10 is a great new tool. Now with a few clicks, you can demonstrate a feature or a bug by recording your desktop as easily as you might use Ctl-Shift-4 to capture part of your screen.  This is somewhat limited by an inability to record sound, especially the developer or user explaining the feature or issue at hand.  I think this new functionality is a real benefit despite the fact that a lot of video editing people have been trashing the new Quicktime 10 video utility that comes with OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard).





A more advanced option remains the use of professional tools like Telestream's Screenflow ($99), which allows voice recording, text callouts, and potentially smaller file sizes. But other than that,...

Uniquely East Agile

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 11 Jan 2010 at 04:58

One thing that seems to be very unique about us is that we really do paired programming. This practice is not for everyone by far. A lot of people don't get it and won't get it. But for those that get it, we are one of the few deep practitioners. Pivotal Labs, of course, is another one. Just from talking to people from other leading development shops it seems like 90% or more of Ruby on Rails agile companies do not practice it to the extent that we do. Paired = higher quality & lower risk of project interruption.

Learn more about Paired Programming on Wikipedia, including information about research on its effectiveness.

Ruby and Agile Conferences in 2010

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 11 Jan 2010 at 04:46

These look like the most interesting Ruby and Agile related conferenceevents in 2010:

  • April 9-10, Reston, Virgina.Ruby NationRuby conference. SOLD OUT.
  • April 14-15, San Francisco, California. Chirp Twitter Developer Conference ($469).
  • April 20-21, New York, NY. #140Conf ($140).
  • May 22-23, Krakow, Poland.EuRuKoRuby conference. For reference, see EuRuKo 2009.
  • May 22-23, Gothenberg, Sweden. Nordic Ruby conference ($809 -600).
  • June 7-10, Baltimore, Maryland. RailsConf O'Reilly Ruby on Rails conference ($695).
  • August 4-6, (near) Jacksonville, Florida. BizConf. A Hashrocket founded conference ($1,570).

I will come back and update this post over time to keep it fresh.

Here are a few I'm keeping my eye on but haven't really decided if they are interesting yet or not, or they have yet to...