Speaker Series

A lot of popular folks come to Yahoo! and hang out. There are experts, authors, musicians, luminaries, – giving talks, running workshops, attending conferences, performing, and being a presence on the campus.

Our own group has had people in. I’m not sure who they all are. I hear there was Mary Poppendieck, who’s suggestion of eliminating waste may have been interpreted by a few as meaning some roles could be considered redundant. Seems a shame.

Since I’ve been around, there has been two people we’ve brought in. The first was Jim Coplien, who shook things up a bit. People are still referring to his presentation on agile architecture. We have it on video some where. I wonder if I can make it public? Worth finding out and better than me writing about it now.

Today David Anderson came in, and talked about industrial-strength, agile complimentary, product development system. This system is based in the Theory of Constraints (TOC), where customers pull value through the system. It takes advantage of mathematical fact and scientific backing in queuing theory and Little’s Law. The system is monitored real-time with an ever-changing visual board of all work in progress. Product is developed in a cadence, where success happens with enthusiasm. David calls it a Kanban System for Sustaining Engineering, and with a subtle change, it is a system for software engineering.

David Anderson Presentation Part1

David Anderson Presentation Part2


Slide Deck in the video

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2 Responses to Speaker Series

  1. Kevin says:

    I know I’m late to the party on this article, but as a UX/UI dengiser, new to Agile, in a team that is new to having a full time UX/UI dengiser, I am desperately trying to find ways to integrate, adapt and make it all work. Unfortunately this is another of those articles claiming to give insights into Integrating UX Into Agile but its starting assumption is that the dengiser is the problem and is resistant to change.Believe me I am very enthusiastic about Agile and its potential for UX/UI, but at a level Agile actually promotes poor design. It is concerned with the production process. Design in Agile requires a series of artefacts rather than an holistic engagement between a person and an interface. Design assets are often required up-front and scrum meetings early in the sprint consist of developers saying I’m blocked by UX’. So while the developers are doing nice Agile things, they seem to be demanding that the dengiser provides a waterfall feed into them to make the Agile process work in the first place.Agile is not some sacred cow that cannot be challenged, that is the lesson we have learned. I think more Agile experts should be prepared to consider the possibility that dengisers are not the problem. Agile is certainly part of the problem and Devs are being resistant to change if they expect UX to integrate without any compromise on their part. As it is, most case studies are written by devs and imply that dengisers should do all the compromising while still producing commercial standard work.it isn’t impossible, we are making progress. But in our experience (devs and dengiser alike) developers and the Agile process has to be as flexible, if not more flexible, than UX to make it work effectively.

    • Aaron Sanders says:

      Kevin, Are you sure this is the article you meant to comment on? Can you help me see where this expresses the point of view that designers are the problem?