larry apke, agile doctor, bdd, tdd, excellent design, agile principles

Agile Principles: Excellent Design Needs BDD & TDD

This principle is much like the one previous about sustainable development. Agile doesn’t ask us to shortcut quality and increase technical debt in an effort to deliver software faster. It is precisely because we do not shortcut quality and incur technical debt that we are able to move faster.

I have worked with many teams to introduce Behavior Driven Development (BDD) because, among a great number of other advantages, BDD allows developers an easier way to access the practice of Test Driven Development (TDD). And, in my experience, TDD is the only way I have seen out of the practice of “Big Up Front Design”. Read More →


larry apke, agile, scrum, indiegogo, agile development, agile doctor

Agile Principles: How to Maintain a Sustainable Pace

Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely.

When I think on this principle I cannot help but think about the potential “dark side” of agile and how it can be misunderstood and implemented incorrectly. Read More →


Not Burning Down? Diagnosing and Fixing the Some of the Problems

Of course you would not expect every sprint to have a perfect burndown. You would not expect to complete every story in every sprint (my goal has always been 90% or greater stories complete), but if you are finding yourself with many “overhanging” stories each sprint there are a number of things that you can do to diagnose and fix the issue. In this particular post, I am going to discuss problems with time and hours. There are three things that can go wrong with hours: The number of hours the individual estimates for capacity is too low. The number … Read More →


What to Expect from a New Agile Team

Whenever I work with a new Agile team I have some stock “speeches” that I tend to give. One of my favorites “speeches” covers my expectations are for a newly formed Agile team, namely increased transparency and predictability.  Notice that I did not say increased velocity. That may or may not come with time, but the first two hurdles are getting to a point where one can understand what is going on at any time – transparency – and what can be expected to be delivered over time – predictability. One of the biggest hurdles to getting any software development … Read More →


Why I Don’t Like Whiteboards, the Last Sacred Cow and Why I Will Burn in Scrum Hell

I doubt there are many people in this world who have the passion or spend more time researching about Agile than I do. Over the years I have seen many sacred Agile/Scrum cows questioned. Usually when one has the guts to do so there are scores of Agilistas ready to denounce anything that goes against their indoctrinated Agile/Scrum education. It seems that many fail to understand that in order to prove the value of something, it must always be questioned. Hell, the whole damn thing started because a few folks decided they would question orthodoxy and find better ways to … Read More →


Using Individual Burndowns

I have my very own Scrum team right at home. There are seven of us in the family. I love each and every one of my family members equally, but that does not mean that each one of my family members is the same nor would I treat each one exactly the same. Of my three boys, each has their own wants, needs and desires that I need to help fulfill on a regular basis. One needs extra help for their homework, one needs extra time to help them with their driving lessons and my youngest just needs me to … Read More →