The discussion of applying lean principles to software development has largely focused on identifying and eliminating waste (in Japanese: muda). Lean Thinking equally aims to remove overburden (muri) and unnecessary variation (mura). Roman Pichler discusses the relationship of the "three M's" and proposes to eliminate overburden as the first step toward a leaner process.
The 'Retrospective Prime Directive' is a practice used by many teams as part of their continuous improvement cycle. As outlined in Norm Kerth's book, it is intended to foster the deep learning that is the heart of a retrospective. This article is an enlightening conversation, captured by Linda Rising, between senior practitioners on the benefits and the challenges of using this practice.
In this InfoQ article Kenji Hiranabe applies lessons learned while working with Japanese manufacturers. While many Agile teams are optimizing only a portion of the value stream, Hiranabe proposes a simple way to adapt lessons from Lean Manufacturing's "Kanban" visual tracking system to make process visible to more of the organization, for better communication and process improvement.
Why do Agile teams get stuck in the just-average "norming" stage, never making it to the exciting high "performing" stage of team growth? The invisible "learning bottleneck" can stunt performance. 16
Can refactoring and TDD create “working software” that survives real life? Michael Nygard suggests that "leaky abstractions" ambush us at 5AM when we've paid too little attention to architecture. 25
When we discard traditional SDLC rules, how should we work? Rachel Davies explains how teams can use Retrospectives to reflect on their process and to improve it gradually over time. 3
As we practice various Agile disciplines, the effects of our words and actions actively create, and re-create over time, the environment in which our teams and projects operate - for good or ill. 3
John Harby participates in several OASIS Committees and was co-author of The Middleware Company SOA Blueprints. Here, he proposes an alternative to the Enterprise Service Bus. 23
Amr Elssamadisy tells how participants at XPday Montreal focused on the dynamics of adoption, rather than the structure resulting from adoption, to compile Agile adoption patterns helpful to novices. 1
InfoQ editor Deborah Hartmann challenges agile practitioners to consider: are our practices still aligned with the Agile Manifesto? 15
In 2003 Mary and Tom Poppendieck adapted the principles of Lean manufacturing for software development. Now their second book offers practical help for readers implementing Lean software development. 6
Retrospectives are traditionally held at the end of a project - too late to help. Agile teams need retrospectives that are iterative and incremental, so improvement can start as soon as possible.