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Agile UCD Better Software Article

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  • Jon Dickinson
    A colleague and I published an article in better software magazine last month about integrating agile and UCD. We are both keen followers of this group and
    Message 1 of 3 , Dec 3, 2008
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      A colleague and I published an article in better software magazine
      last month about integrating agile and UCD. We are both keen followers
      of this group and would love some feedback on the article.

      http://www.stickyminds.com/BetterSoftware/magazine.asp?fn=cifea&ac=384

      Thanks,

      Jon Dickinson
      Accolade Consulting Ltd

      www.accolade-consulting.co.uk
    • William Pietri
      ... Hi, Jon. I think that s a great article. I especially like the point that they are both philosophies, not methods. One minor comment: it s not just agile
      Message 2 of 3 , Dec 3, 2008
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        Jon Dickinson wrote:
        > A colleague and I published an article in better software magazine
        > last month about integrating agile and UCD. We are both keen followers
        > of this group and would love some feedback on the article.
        >
        > http://www.stickyminds.com/BetterSoftware/magazine.asp?fn=cifea&ac=384
        >

        Hi, Jon. I think that's a great article. I especially like the point
        that they are both philosophies, not methods.

        One minor comment: it's not just agile developers who are prone to just
        delivering software without regard to whether it's really valuable. I
        think that's a universal problem for developers, whose main unifying
        characteristic is knowing how to write code. If I had to guess, I'd say
        that agile developers are less prone to that than the population in
        general, but my sample may be skewed.

        Overall, though, I think you've done a great job of expressing the value
        of both approaches in a way that people familiar with just one (or
        perhaps none) could see why they matter.

        William
      • Jon Dickinson
        Thanks for the feedback William. I certainly agree that building software in an agile environment focuses developers on the value of what they are delivering a
        Message 3 of 3 , Dec 4, 2008
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          Thanks for the feedback William.

          I certainly agree that building software in an agile environment focuses developers on the value of what they are delivering a lot more than when following a specification, but that raises the interesting question of value and who determines the value of our software.

          I've worked in a number of agile environments where the value of the software is determined by a manager in the role of customer, and their notion of value is to deliver a number of functions in a specified time, without much consideration for the end users. In this case we as developers aligned to the customers value system.

          I've also worked in agile environments where the value of software is determined by a product owner with very strong user experience input, and even where the user experience champion has become the product owner. Interestingly, in this environment some developers aligned to the value of the customer faster than others. It seems there was more resistance to aligning to the value system where the quality of the user experience took greater precedence over delivering new features.

          It also occurred to me as I write this that the environments where there was little user experience input were internal IT projects, whereas the UCD driven environments were product development.

          Jon.


          2008/12/3 William Pietri <william@...>

          Jon Dickinson wrote:
          > A colleague and I published an article in better software magazine
          > last month about integrating agile and UCD. We are both keen followers
          > of this group and would love some feedback on the article.
          >
          > http://www.stickyminds.com/BetterSoftware/magazine.asp?fn=cifea&ac=384
          >

          Hi, Jon. I think that's a great article. I especially like the point
          that they are both philosophies, not methods.

          One minor comment: it's not just agile developers who are prone to just
          delivering software without regard to whether it's really valuable. I
          think that's a universal problem for developers, whose main unifying
          characteristic is knowing how to write code. If I had to guess, I'd say
          that agile developers are less prone to that than the population in
          general, but my sample may be skewed.

          Overall, though, I think you've done a great job of expressing the value
          of both approaches in a way that people familiar with just one (or
          perhaps none) could see why they matter.

          William


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