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Showing posts from January, 2011

The Learning Organization: Improving on the code randori

For most of the past year, I have been pushing to make my workplace more of a learning organisation.  I'm doing this for purely selfish reasons - I simply enjoy working in a place filled with smart, motivated people.    A focus on learning and continuous improvement tends to attract people who enjoy that, and chase out people who don't.  (Senior management expresses it differently, but I think my reasons are more honest.)

A big part of this effort has been to run a regular "craft day".  "Craft days" are  in-house software conferences with a heavy emphasis on hands-on practice of programming skills.  (This has been disappointing for people who wanted to make beaded purses and wallets, or whittle figurines from a block of wood.  You just can't please everyone.)

It really is awesome that I can do this during working hours, unlike what Chad Fowler describes and which most of us have had to do - learn almost all of our new skills outside of work hours.

But..…

Why are we having a "Post-Agile" debate?

I just read a post by Kurt Häusler to the Software Craftsmanship Google group this evening.

The background for this is a long-term debate about what exactly "Software Craftsmanship" means, and what it's major focus should be.  I think that Kurt did a great job spelling out two of the major points of view:

It seems a lot of people suffering from "agile-fatige" and looking for something post-agile are in two camps. One camp seems to be competent leaders working with poor developers. For them things like Scrum have bought some improvements in the organization and they despair that after all this "agility" the code is still crap. These people crave something like craftsmanship to light a fire amongst their developers. The other camp seems to be competent developers suffering under poor leadership. They see the XP practices and clean code as obvious to the point of being trivial, and wonder why people like Bob Martin are calling for more focus on code, when…