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Re: [agile-usability] Article on Design and Agile on A list Apart

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  • Ron Jeffries
    Hello, Adam. On Thursday, December 4, 2008, at 12:02:31 AM, you ... Well, to operate that way, wouldn t one have to be living a lie? ... Everyone with their
    Message 1 of 16 , Dec 4, 2008
      Hello, Adam. On Thursday, December 4, 2008, at 12:02:31 AM, you
      wrote:

      > Except that it is the Emperor's New Clothing. They have to believe
      > we're selling something or we don't get paid. Software is the perfect
      > thing to be selling, because no one is quite sure what it is (The
      > magical stuff that the internet is made from.) And, everyone already
      > expects us to fail (After all it's /really hard/.)

      Well, to operate that way, wouldn't one have to be living a lie?

      > I'm being cynical, and you don't have to join me. On the other hand,
      > cynics are people who have seen how screwed up the world can be.

      Everyone with their eyes open sees how screwed up the world can be.
      The question is what do you do next.

      Ron Jeffries
      www.XProgramming.com
      www.xprogramming.com/blog
      Find the simple path to what works and follow it,
      always looking for a simpler path. -- Patrick D. Smith
    • Adam Sroka
      On Thu, Dec 4, 2008 at 6:15 AM, Ron Jeffries ... More or less. It is a mob mentality. The more people you have working on something the less stake they have
      Message 2 of 16 , Dec 4, 2008
        On Thu, Dec 4, 2008 at 6:15 AM, Ron Jeffries
        <ronjeffries@...> wrote:
        > Hello, Adam. On Thursday, December 4, 2008, at 12:02:31 AM, you
        > wrote:
        >
        >> Except that it is the Emperor's New Clothing. They have to believe
        >> we're selling something or we don't get paid. Software is the perfect
        >> thing to be selling, because no one is quite sure what it is (The
        >> magical stuff that the internet is made from.) And, everyone already
        >> expects us to fail (After all it's /really hard/.)
        >
        > Well, to operate that way, wouldn't one have to be living a lie?
        >

        More or less.

        It is a mob mentality. The more people you have working on something
        the less stake they have individually. Add deep hierarchies and long,
        slow feedback loops and you have an environment where no one has any
        personal responsibility.

        I think a lot of software people just want to build things. If the
        "architect" comes and says, "I need a component that takes these
        inputs and produces these outputs, and I need it in six weeks," they
        are content to do that with little stake in how that relates to the
        business and the success of the overall project.

        I think the blame for mismanagement generally lies with such
        "architects" and whoever is pulling their strings. Sometimes it is
        malicious. Sometimes it is incompetence. Sometimes you have True
        Believers who are sure that what they are doing is the Right Way to
        develop software even though they've never personally seen it succeed.

        >> I'm being cynical, and you don't have to join me. On the other hand,
        >> cynics are people who have seen how screwed up the world can be.
        >
        > Everyone with their eyes open sees how screwed up the world can be.
        > The question is what do you do next.
        >

        Personally, I make as much noise as I can and then try to get the next
        gig lined up. At some point I'd like to settle down and take some
        responsibility, but that hasn't been in the cards yet.
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