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What is it that keeps you shipping working code every day? That's not the state of nature, you've clearly made some kind of decision to do that.

80% of agile can be summed up as: limit work in progress, and (almost as a necessary consequence of this) ensure any given piece of work can go from initial requirement to deployed to customer very quickly. My "in the trenches" experience is that whether or not a company follows this is the most accurate single predictor of whether it succeeds. So methodologies do, in fact, get projects done.




> What is it that keeps you shipping working code every day? That's not the state of nature, you've clearly made some kind of decision to do that.

Good question. If you mean: "Why do you choose to ship code?" then I suppose it's my desire to please my clients and stay employed. If you mean: "How do you manage it?" then it's what I hinted at earlier: Good intuition, experience, a precise and logical mind, and thoughtful use of tools.

About tools: My tools are important to me, but I don't see them as a silver bullet. It's like if you asked a carpenter about a "hammer-centric methodology." She would laugh. She'd say yeah, she uses a hammer all the time, but her hammer use doesn't amount to a methodology or a philosophy. Hammer use just comes about naturally as a consequence of recognizing nails that must be driven in.

Similarly for software: I don't use to-do lists because they're "agile." I use them because I need to remember the 20 different requests my client made yesterday. Could I live without Asana, Basecamp, or what have you? Sure. I'd just write my tasks in a text file. What if I couldn't use a text file? Then I'd put sticky notes on my wall. I need tools (everyone does), but I don't deify them.

> 80% of agile can be summed up as: limit work in progress, and (almost as a necessary consequence of this) ensure any given piece of work can go from initial requirement to deployed to customer very quickly. My "in the trenches" experience is that whether or not a company follows this is the most accurate single predictor of whether it succeeds. So methodologies do, in fact, get projects done.

I agree with all of the above except for the statement that "methodologies do, in fact, get projects done." I think the reason we disagree is that we mean different things by "methodology." I take "methodology" to mean a formalized process, like a recipe, that you can follow mechanically. By that definition, agility is the explicit rejection of methodologies.

But then, I'm not the god of word definitions. I don't get to say my definition of "methodology" is right and yours is wrong. So perhaps it's fair to say that we're each right insofar as we're permitted our respective definitions of "methodology."


I thought you must be kidding about the "hammer-centric methodology": Do companies actually say they have a "tool-centric methodology"?

Then I remembered one I saw just the other day:

> We offer a highly configurable Agile and tools-based software development methodology

They also have an "execution-focused leadership team" and "offer a number of flexible outcome-oriented engagement models assuring the success of our projects"

The whole page is like that!

http://accionlabs.com/company/why-accion-labs/


Wow. I've always wondered: Is this kind of empty, buzzwordy writing effective? Does it sell?

So many companies write this way. I could believe they do so only because their staff never learned how to write good sales copy. Or is there some actual merit to it? Do they know something I don't--namely, that buzzwords sell?


I think it's a joke, just based on the obvious word reuse:

> We are an innovation focused services firm with 100% focus in the emerging technologies. This razor sharp focus has allowed us to differentiate from our competitors in many different ways:


Maybe. Though the page, taken in the context of the overall site, doesn't scream satire. I'd be disinclined to put a joke page on my consultancy's website, but if I did, I'd be sure to make the joke 110% clear. So my suspicion is that the word reuse is just the writer's habit, not evidence of a joke. (Many writers have such habits, especially amongst those of us who aren't writers by trade.)


I've actually had some personal interaction with this company, and I'm pretty sure that the writing style is not satire and not a joke. It's the way somebody actually writes.


Oooh, you can work on Web 2.0 AND 3.0. I'm not sure if Web 3.0 is backwards compatible, though.




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