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RE: [XP] cons of XP

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  • Blum, Robert
    ... The three I ve encountered so far: 1) XP does not work without (larger) modifications on large-scale projects. (Read: 15-20 people upwards). The reason
    Message 1 of 34 , Feb 26, 2002
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      > From: pradeeps [mailto:pradeeps@...]

      > hello folks,
      > Could you possibly list down a list of cons or disadvantages
      > of XP? Some thoughts on when not to use XP, etc.
      > -P

      The three I've encountered so far:

      1) XP does not work without (larger) modifications on large-scale projects.
      (Read: 15-20 people upwards). The reason (IMHO) is that there is a
      combinatorial explosion of communication paths - you just can't communicate
      with everybody on a daily basis if your team is too large

      2) Having a majority of junior people on your team that need a lot of
      mentoring. If the 'juniors' outnumber your senior guys, you will have
      junior-junior pairs - and they are in a position to really wreak havoc with
      your project. Mind you, most of the time they actually don't - but they'll
      definitely go for all the standard pitfalls the seniors guys already have
      been in :)

      3) Heavy R&D environment. Basically, your cost of change curve is not flat
      any more. Things you discover later on will force you to restructure big
      parts of your project. Yes, refactored code is easier to change. But it
      seems to be better to research the topic until you are confident you know
      the domain and THEN build your project. Which of course will not work with
      most managers - your research prototype _looks_ like it's working, right? So
      why build it again?

      Bye,
      Robert
    • Dossy
      ... If they re successful doing it the way they re used to, then there is no point in proselytizing. It s hard to convince someone who believes (or at least
      Message 34 of 34 , Mar 2, 2002
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        On 2002.03.01, Dinwiddie, George <George.Dinwiddie@...> wrote:
        > It's quite possible, however, that they do want to ship quality
        > software on time and they may believe that the XP practices will
        > cause them not to do so. Or they may believe that if they just
        > get the requirements right before they start, they will be able
        > to do so. Or they may believe that if they have a good enough
        > Architect do the design before the coders start, they will be
        > able to do so.

        If they're successful doing it the way they're used to, then
        there is no point in proselytizing. It's hard to convince
        someone who believes (or at least perceives) that they've
        got a successful methodology to convert to XP. I don't
        blame them.

        However, if you've "gone down with the ship" on enough failed
        projects ... isn't that a not-very-subtle hint that the techniques
        you're employing aren't working? XP may not be the solution,
        or the only solution, but at least it's something different than
        what you're already doing ... so why not give it a shot? Not
        changing your actions that lead to failure is, in my opinion,
        an explicit "physical" expression of not wanting to succeed.

        > In any of these scenarios, saying that they must not *really*
        > want to ship quality software on time is not congruent with
        > their beliefs and will do nothing to change their mind. It
        > is an argument that may undermine your intent with uninvolved
        > observers, too.

        Possibly. Perhaps the people who really do want to shp quality
        software on time have already tried XP (and perhaps taken away
        what good points they can) and those who remain who aren't
        willing to try it are indeed refusing to try something new
        because those few really don't care about shipping quality
        software. They seem to care about other things more, like
        political agendas or just covering their own asses.

        Of course, if they just started demonstrating their value to
        the organization, they wouldn't need to play those stupid
        games, but maybe that says something ...

        -- Dossy

        --
        Dossy Shiobara mail: dossy@...
        Panoptic Computer Network web: http://www.panoptic.com/
        "He realized the fastest way to change is to laugh at your own
        folly -- then you can let go and quickly move on." (p. 70)
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