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InfoQ Video: Practices of an Agile Developer

At "No FLuff Just Stuff" Venkat Subramaniam, co-author with Andy Hunt of the book "Practices of an Agile Developer," shared his pragmatic approach to some of the important technical and non-technical factors contributing to project success, including: coding, developer attitude, debugging, mentoring and feedback. InfoQ has captured Venkat's presentation, "Practices of an Agile Developer," on video.

Venkat describes their approach as consisting of "Practices and Balance:"
  • We’ll start with often convincing, but troubling, thoughts...
  • We’ll discuss good practices, recommendations, dos and don’ts, and
  • We'll summarize our advice for the practice, then
  • Tell you "what it feels like" when you're doing it right, and
  • Tell you how to keep your balance.
In this presentation, as in their book, each point starts with the voice of both the "angel" and the "devil" in each of us, for example:

The "what it feels like" section is unusual, and welcome. For example:

 The video covers these topics, just a sampling of the 45 practices included in the book:
  • Beginning Agility:
    • Work for Outcome
    • Criticise Ideas, not People
  • Feeding Agility:
    • Keep Up With Change
    • Invest in Your Team
    • Feel the Rhythm
  • Delivering What Users Want:
    • Let Customers Make Decisions
    • Let Design Guide, Not Dictate
    • Fixed Prices are Broken Promises
  • Agile Feedback:
    • Different Makes a Difference
  • Agile Debugging:
    • Attack Problems in Isolation
  • Agile Collaboration:
    • Schedule Regular Face Time
    • Be a Mentor
Venkat and Andy created the book to help developers incrementally grow their skillsets while tackling real problems in their everyday work. In our 2007 interview, Venkat had this to say on the topic of continuous, ongoing education:
I think it is important that we all spend time; if you are a person who is interested in a 9 to 5 job, I recommend that you have a career switch. Software development is not a field where you can just go to work; we are a professional community; it requires a great deal of effort and agility to keep up with it. So get on the treadmill and march along and that's the only way to succeed.

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Community comments

  • Great presentation on Agile programming

    by Pawan Kumar,

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    I really enjoyed your presentation and most of the things said in the presentation. It will help me a lot in changing the way I am working right now and also my team members.

  • I'm converted :)

    by João Vieira da Luz,

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    Nice talk in an agile style. Trying to keep the feedback loop short. It's very clear Agile in Venkat words.

    Thanks for talk João

  • Very good talk

    by Marcos Oliveira,

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    Venkat, this is the best talk I've seen on how to make a team work. Thank you very much.

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