Welcome!

Microservices Expo Authors: Mehdi Daoudi, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Stackify Blog

Related Topics: Java IoT, Mobile IoT, Microservices Expo, Linux Containers, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing, Server Monitoring, @CloudExpo, @BigDataExpo, FinTech Journal, @ThingsExpo, @DevOpsSummit

Java IoT: Article

Scrum at 21 with @KSchwaber | @DevOpsSummit #Agile #AI #Scrum #DevOps

A look back through the eyes of Ken Schwaber, its co-creator

I'm told that it has been 21 years since Scrum became public when Jeff Sutherland and I presented it at an Object-Oriented Programming, Systems, Languages & Applications (OOPSLA) workshop in Austin, TX, in October of 1995.

Time sure does fly. Things mature. I'm still in the same building and at the same company where I first formulated Scrum.[1] Initially nobody knew of Scrum, yet it is now an open source body of knowledge translated into more than 30 languages.[2] People use Scrum worldwide for developing software and other uses I never anticipated.[3]

Scrum was born and initially used by Jeff and me to meet market demand at our respective companies. After we made Scrum public in 1996 and writing my paper SCRUM Development Process, we started trying Scrum publicly, in companies with critical needs that were willing to try anything. The first organization where we employed Scrum was NewsPage, one of the first Internet news aggregators and publishers. This was followed by four years of helping finance and healthcare organizations.

Everything stands on the shoulders of the work of others, and we borrowed heavily prior to 1996:

  • Iterative, incremental development is a foundation for Scrum Sprints and "done" increments.
  • I first applied the theory of empiricism and complex systems theory from work done at DuPont Advanced Laboratories
  • Jeff drew heavily on his understandings of lean thinking.
  • The name "Scrum" was introduced by Peter DeGace and Leslie Hulet Stahl in the still active community of wicked problems, righteous solution[4]
  • Jeff McKenna is an unsung hero of Scrum, contributing many thoughts and concepts.

The father of XP, Kent Beck, contacted Jeff Sutherland in 1996 to ask if we minded if he borrowed some of the ideas from Scrum; he reasoned that there was no need to reinvent the wheel.

From its introduction until the technology crash of 2001, the work we did with organizations implementing Scrum provided us with the learning we needed to evolve and strengthen. Scrum gained most of its current events, roles, and artifacts during that time. We also gained confidence that it worked, creating value in the most complex, unlikely circumstances. Jeff and I continue to listen, think, and update Scrum today.

Lightweight, or Agile
In early 2001, Jeff and I were invited to participate in discussing our approach to software development by Jim Highsmith, Bob Martin, and others that were using and advocating what was known as "lightweight" methodologies. These lightweight processes were in contrast to the overwhelming weight of waterfall, CMM, and RUP.

We created a synthesis of our best thoughts and refined them into a single set of principles and values. Ward Cunningham published them on his wiki[5] and put up a place for people to sign their support[6] -  The Agile Manifesto, which struck a chord. In retrospect, the choice of the word "Agile" was a brilliant call to arms. That word became magical.

In response, we created the Agile Alliance, also in 2001. Alistair Cockburn devised and conducted its first conference in Salt Lake City, focusing on community and conversations. His contribution has been forgotten, but it was seminal.

Driving Scrum Awareness
Remember 2001? That was when the tech market crashed, compounded by the terrorist attacks on 9/11 and the end of the Y2K bug remediation spending. People didn't have money, and nobody was traveling (particularly in airplanes).

I decided to take spreading Scrum and Agile on my shoulders. I traveled worldwide, giving free presentations, classes, seminars and beer hall conversation with anyone who would listen. I also published articles, many of which are still at my first website, controlchaos.com[7].

People started using Scrum[2] . Start-up and software companies adopted it to get their products off the ground or to create frequent releases. People used it in their IT organizations projects to help their projects succeed and because it was just more fun. The pleasure of coming to work to collaborate with others in small teams to build great products that our customers loved was a universal magnet.

Scrum started to become known. When I was working with Salesforce.com for example and with many other companies, it was amazing to hear business people telling each other, "You aren't going to believe it, my software organization is finally listening to me and has already showed me some working software." The typical business person response was, "You mean I don't have to wait 18 months to get software that I don't want." My response, which reflects the heart of Scrum, was, "That's right. Now you'll get something you don't want in 30 days."

Scrum Remains Simple but Operates in Complexity
Scrum is simple. Scrum delivers transparent information every 30 days or less (depending on the length of your Sprint). However, Scrum operates in a complex technical, business, and interpersonal environment. The outcome is unpredictable. What saves it is that, for better or worse, the person paying for the Sprint (Product Owner) gets to assess the results and determine what is the best thing to do next. Scrum has been the flag carrier for the Agile movement because of this - ability to do your best through agile response.

Of course, this requires diligence, intelligence, and courage (going back to the Scrum Values of Courage, Focus, Commitment, Respect, and Openness). You can waste money and lose opportunities if you don't have or exercise these values.

To help organizations see how much agility their development organization has, I devised a value metric, called the Agility Index. Try it out and get a feel of how you are doing, the metrics measuring (broadly) your:

  • Current market value
  • Time-to-market
  • Ability to innovate

This index is useful whether you are building software of just trying to gain business agility and compete effectively. This is particularly true as businesses become more and more automated.

A combined technical and business manager that drives value from one or more businesses functions is supplanting the CIO. Agility and Scrum are the bedrock. Scrum values determine success, which cannot be bought; instead it must be earned the old fashioned way - hard work.

Taking Scrum Forward
Scrum is still just a framework. Scrum doesn't fail, as countless organizations have proven. You still solely own the prerogative to fail. Scrum helps you manage that prerogative by creating close working relationships between people from all aspects of value creation. People are the most important asset that Scrum brings to creative initiatives - creativity through shared values in small cross-functional teams focused on transparency.

I always thought that Scrum was enough. People would figure out how to use it in their specific circumstances. My part was to teach them and to build a body of consultants and trainers to help them.

Over the years, I've added some things to help people use Scrum to build innovative, leading-edge products. Briefly:

  • Agility Index based on evidence-based measurement[8] of the value that an organization reflects when developing, deploying, and sustaining software-based endeavors (see above). Apply this to assess whether your investment in software-based initiatives is improving or worsening your organization.
  • Nexus and Nexus+[9], frameworks that rest on top of the initial Scrum framework, helping organize larger scale software development initiatives. Nexus+ is particularly helpful in structuring the app-based approach to delivering functionality on a well-architected infrastructure. It is formalized in a guide that parallels the Scrum Guide, the Nexus Guide[10].
  • Scrum Development Kit[11] (SDK), a detailed definition of DONE specific to different technical environments, formed by invariant principles, modern practices, artifacts that can be expected from those practices on certain technologies, and integrated technology stacks.
  • Scrum Studio[12]  provides an encapsulated environment, separate from the lean or traditional business environment, within which creative product development based on Scrum can be successful. Innovation laboratories in various countries are based on this model.
    Agility Path[13] is a methodology for management driven change from traditional structures to an agile culture. Based on a practice database, value-based measurements, and change and evaluation methods, one or more leadership teams cause measured improvement and gains in agility for an organization.

Scrum.org sustains and enhances these largely free Scrum facilitation tools and processes. You can either figure them out and use them yourself, or, if needed, I have created trainers and consultants to help you.

There are many Scrum, Agile, DevOps, and Lean books, conferences, and expositions. Some of the books are excellent sources, but far more conferences, expositions, consulting organizations, and trainings are pretty useless, serving as money-making endeavors that create overhead, confusion and waste. By several definitions, Scrum is more than 400 pages long.

Scrum will serve you if you understand it, embrace its values, and rely on people working together to fulfill themselves while creating valuable products. This was true when Jeff and I started Scrum and it is true now. Ensure that anyone who claims to be an expert really uses Scrum[14].

Resources

  1. Advanced Development Methods, Inc., then Scrum.org at 131 Middlesex Turnpike, Burlington Massachusetts
  2. http://www.scrumguides.org
  3. Marketing campaigns in NYC, specifically IBM's developers working with its advertising agency.
  4. Wicked Problems, Righteous Solutions: A Catolog of Modern Engineering Paradigms, DeGrace and Stahl, Prentice Hall, 1990. http://amzn.to/2deQvcJ
  5. http://agilemanifesto.org
  6. http://agilemanifesto.org/display/index.html
  7. http://www.controlchaos.com Library Seminal Articles, My Articles, and Articles
  8. http://www.ebmgt.org
  9. https://kenschwaber.wordpress.com/2015/09/14/nexus/
  10. http://bit.ly/1i6zjHs
  11. http://bit.ly/2dhaHsY
  12. "Software in Thirty Days, Schwaber and Sutherland, Wiley Press, 2014, Chapter 7, "Develop a Scrum Capability"
  13. Ibid, Chapter 9. Also contact Scrum.org for papers and more details.
  14. Op Cit, www.scrumguides.org

More Stories By Ken Schwaber

Ken Schwaber co-developed the Scrum framework with Jeff Sutherland in the early 1990s to help organizations struggling with complex development projects. One of the signatories to the Agile Manifesto in 2001, he subsequently founded the Agile Alliance and Scrum Alliance. He founded Scrum.org in 2009 in order to execute on his mission of improving the profession of software development. A 30-year veteran of the software development industry (from bottle washer to boss), he has written four books about Scrum: Agile Software Development with Scrum, Agile Project Management with Scrum, The Enterprise and Scrum, and Software and 30 Days. He lives in Lexington, Massachusetts.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@MicroservicesExpo Stories
We have already established the importance of APIs in today’s digital world (read about it here). With APIs playing such an important role in keeping us connected, it’s necessary to maintain the API’s performance as well as availability. There are multiple aspects to consider when monitoring APIs, from integration to performance issues, therefore a general monitoring strategy that only accounts for up-time is not ideal.
Enterprise architects are increasingly adopting multi-cloud strategies as they seek to utilize existing data center assets, leverage the advantages of cloud computing and avoid cloud vendor lock-in. This requires a globally aware traffic management strategy that can monitor infrastructure health across data centers and end-user experience globally, while responding to control changes and system specification at the speed of today’s DevOps teams. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Josh Gray, Chie...
In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Mike Johnston, an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io, discussed how to use Kubernetes to set up a SaaS infrastructure for your business. Mike Johnston is an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io with over 12 years of experience designing, deploying, and maintaining server and workstation infrastructure at all scales. He has experience with brick and mortar data centers as well as cloud providers like Digital Ocean, Amazon Web Services, and Rackspace. H...
All organizations that did not originate this moment have a pre-existing culture as well as legacy technology and processes that can be more or less amenable to DevOps implementation. That organizational culture is influenced by the personalities and management styles of Executive Management, the wider culture in which the organization is situated, and the personalities of key team members at all levels of the organization. This culture and entrenched interests usually throw a wrench in the work...
As many know, the first generation of Cloud Management Platform (CMP) solutions were designed for managing virtual infrastructure (IaaS) and traditional applications. But that’s no longer enough to satisfy evolving and complex business requirements. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Scott Davis, Embotics CTO, will explore how next-generation CMPs ensure organizations can manage cloud-native and microservice-based application architectures, while also facilitating agile DevOps methodology. He wi...
When you focus on a journey from up-close, you look at your own technical and cultural history and how you changed it for the benefit of the customer. This was our starting point: too many integration issues, 13 SWP days and very long cycles. It was evident that in this fast-paced industry we could no longer afford this reality. We needed something that would take us beyond reducing the development lifecycles, CI and Agile methodologies. We made a fundamental difference, even changed our culture...
Docker is sweeping across startups and enterprises alike, changing the way we build and ship applications. It's the most prominent and widely known software container platform, and it's particularly useful for eliminating common challenges when collaborating on code (like the "it works on my machine" phenomenon that most devs know all too well). With Docker, you can run and manage apps side-by-side - in isolated containers - resulting in better compute density. It's something that many developer...
Most companies are adopting or evaluating container technology - Docker in particular - to speed up application deployment, drive down cost, ease management and make application delivery more flexible overall. As with most new architectures, this dream takes a lot of work to become a reality. Even when you do get your application componentized enough and packaged properly, there are still challenges for DevOps teams to making the shift to continuous delivery and achieving that reduction in cost ...
These days, change is the only constant. In order to adapt and thrive in an ever-advancing and sometimes chaotic workforce, companies must leverage intelligent tools to streamline operations. While we're only at the dawn of machine intelligence, using a workflow manager will benefit your company in both the short and long term. Think: reduced errors, improved efficiency and more empowered employees-and that's just the start. Here are five other reasons workflow automation is leading a revolution...
As today's digital disruptions bounce and smash their way through conventional technologies and conventional wisdom alike, predicting their path is a multifaceted challenge. So many areas of technology advance on Moore's Law-like exponential curves that divining the future is fraught with danger. Such is the problem with artificial intelligence (AI), and its related concepts, including cognitive computing, machine learning, and deep learning.
There are several reasons why businesses migrate their operations to the cloud. Scalability and price are among the most important factors determining this transition. Unlike legacy systems, cloud based businesses can scale on demand. The database and applications in the cloud are not rendered simply from one server located in your headquarters, but is instead distributed across several servers across the world. Such CDNs also bring about greater control in times of uncertainty. A database hack ...
We have Continuous Integration and we have Continuous Deployment, but what’s continuous across all of what we do is people. Even when tasks are automated, someone wrote the automation. So, Jayne Groll evangelizes about Continuous Everyone. Jayne is the CEO of the DevOps Institute and the author of Agile Service Management Guide. She talked about Continuous Everyone at the 2016 All Day DevOps conference. She describes it as "about people, culture, and collaboration mapped into your value streams....
API Security is complex! Vendors like Forum Systems, IBM, CA and Axway have invested almost 2 decades of engineering effort and significant capital in building API Security stacks to lockdown APIs. The API Security stack diagram shown below is a building block for rapidly locking down APIs. The four fundamental pillars of API Security - SSL, Identity, Content Validation and deployment architecture - are discussed in detail below.
“Why didn’t testing catch this” must become “How did this make it to testing?” Traditional quality teams are the crutch and excuse keeping organizations from making the necessary investment in people, process, and technology to accelerate test automation. Just like societies that did not build waterways because the labor to keep carrying the water was so cheap, we have created disincentives to automate. In her session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Anne Hungate, President of Daring System...
Did you know that you can develop for mainframes in Java? Or that the testing and deployment can be automated across mobile to mainframe? In his session and demo at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Dana Boudreau, a Senior Director at CA Technologies, will discuss how increasingly teams are developing with agile methodologies, using modern development environments, and automating testing and deployments, mobile to mainframe.
As DevOps methodologies expand their reach across the enterprise, organizations face the daunting challenge of adapting related cloud strategies to ensure optimal alignment, from managing complexity to ensuring proper governance. How can culture, automation, legacy apps and even budget be reexamined to enable this ongoing shift within the modern software factory?
While some vendors scramble to create and sell you a fancy solution for monitoring your spanking new Amazon Lambdas, hear how you can do it on the cheap using just built-in Java APIs yourself. By exploiting a little-known fact that Lambdas aren’t exactly single-threaded, you can effectively identify hot spots in your serverless code. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Dave Martin, Product owner at CA Technologies, will give a live demonstration and code walkthrough, showing how ...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo taking place Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 21st International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is ...
We define Hybrid IT as a management approach in which organizations create a workload-centric and value-driven integrated technology stack that may include legacy infrastructure, web-scale architectures, private cloud implementations along with public cloud platforms ranging from Infrastructure-as-a-Service to Software-as-a-Service.
In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Scott Davis, CTO of Embotics, discussed how automation can provide the dynamic management required to cost-effectively deliver microservices and container solutions at scale. He also discussed how flexible automation is the key to effectively bridging and seamlessly coordinating both IT and developer needs for component orchestration across disparate clouds – an increasingly important requirement at today’s multi-cloud enterprise.