Facilitating the Spread of Knowledge and Innovation in Professional Software Development

Write for InfoQ


Choose your language

InfoQ Homepage Presentations Keynote: Embracing Uncertainty

Keynote: Embracing Uncertainty



Dan North discusses the need to embrace uncertainty of scope, technology, effort and structure, expecting the unexpectable and anticipating ignorance.


Dan is a technology and organisational consultant helping businesses deliver quickly and successfully. He believes in putting people first and finding simple, pragmatic solutions, often using lean and agile techniques. He is deeply interested in organisational design, systems thinking and learning. He has been coding and coaching for over 20 years, and he blogs at

About the conference

Agile Cambridge is THE learning and collaborating conference for Agile and Lean practitioners in the East of England. The event also draws participants from across the country, mainland Europe and further afield. It is one of the most successful Agile conferences in the UK.

Recorded at:

Jan 22, 2013

Hello stranger!

You need to Register an InfoQ account or or login to post comments. But there's so much more behind being registered.

Get the most out of the InfoQ experience.

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p

Community comments

  • I don't wanna go on a "faith war", but Dan, you could've spared us...

    by Grzegorz Gałęzowski,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    ...the part about inquisition. It's interesting how you first bash giving simplistic answers for complex questions and then present us with extremely simplistic answer to the question of dogma differences and inquisition.

    I won't put any arguments in here since I want this to be my personal opinion statement, not a beginning of any flame war, but Dan, what you have done is extremely dishonest. Please, next time try to follow your own advice.

    Other than this, very refreshing content and looking forward to your book! :-)

  • Re: I don't wanna go on a "faith war"

    by Dan North,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    Hi Grzegorz,

    I agree and I apologise for over-simplifying. As with anything on this scale the actual context was way more complex, and I didn't even get into the bloodthirsty tit-for-tat by the many other religious factions over the next century or so. Sadly, no-one comes out of that period of history without blood on their hands.

  • Under uncertainty of scope

    by Quinton Anderson,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    "Done" is also contextual. If you are doing a discovery task, you are done when you have validated/invalidated your hypothesis. To borrow from the Lean startup.

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p