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Agile Software Engineering with Visual Studio: From Concept to Continuous Feedback (2nd Edition) (Microsoft Windows Development Series) Paperback – September 23, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-0321685858 ISBN-10: 0321685857 Edition: 2nd

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Agile Software Engineering with Visual Studio: From Concept to Continuous Feedback (2nd Edition) (Microsoft Windows Development Series) + Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2012: Adopting Agile Software Practices: From Backlog to Continuous Feedback (3rd Edition) (Microsoft Windows Development Series)
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Product Details

  • Series: Microsoft Windows Development Series
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional; 2 edition (September 23, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321685857
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321685858
  • Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 6.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #918,398 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Sam Guckenheimer
When I wrote the predecessor of this book, I had been at Microsoft less than three years. I described my history like this:I joined

 

Microsoft in 2003 to work on Visual Studio Team System (VSTS), the new product line that was just released at the end of 2005. As the group product planner, I have played chief customer advocate, a role that I have loved. I have been in the IT industry for twenty-some years, spending most of my career as a tester, project manager, analyst, and developer.

 

As a tester, I’ve always understood the theoretical value of advanced developer practices, such as unit testing, code coverage, static analysis, and memory and performance profiling. At the same time, I never understood how anyone had the patience to learn the obscure tools that you needed to follow the right practices.

 

As a project manager, I was always troubled that the only decent data we could get was about bugs. Driving a project from bug data alone is like driving a car with your eyes closed and only turning the wheel when you hit something. You really want to see the right indicators that you are on course, not just feel the bumps when you stray off it. Here, too, I always understood the value of metrics, such as code coverage and project velocity, but I never understood how anyone could realistically collect all that stuff.

 

As an analyst, I fell in love with modeling. I think visually, and I found graphical models compelling ways to document and communicate. But the models always got out of date as soon as it came time to implement anything. And the models just didn’t handle the key concerns of developers, testers, and operations.

 

In all these cases, I was frustrated by how hard it was to connect the dots for the whole team. I loved the idea in Scrum (one of the Agile processes) of a “single product backlog”—one place where you could see all the work—but the tools people could actually use would fragment the work every which way. What do these requirements have to do with those tasks, and the model elements here, and the tests over there? And where’s the source code in that mix?

 

From a historical perspective, I think IT turned the corner when it stopped trying to automate manual processes and instead asked the question, “With automation, how can we reengineer our core business processes?” That’s when IT started to deliver real business value.

 

They say the cobbler’s children go shoeless. That’s true for IT, too. While we’ve been busy automating other business processes, we’ve largely neglected our own. Nearly all tools targeted for IT professionals and teams seem to still be automating the old manual processes. Those processes required high overhead before automation, and with automation, they still have high overhead. How many times have you gone to a 1-hour project meeting where the first 90 minutes were an argument about whose numbers were right?

 

Now, with Visual Studio, we are seriously asking, “With automation, how can we reengineer our core IT processes? How can we remove the overhead from following good process? How can we make all these different roles individually more productive while integrating them as a high performance team?”

 

Obviously, that’s all still true.

 

Neno Loje

I started my career as a software developer—first as a hobby, later as profession. At the beginning of high school, I fell in love with writing software because it enabled me to create something useful by transforming an idea into something of actual value for someone else. Later, I learned that this was generating customer value.

 

However, the impact and value were limited by the fact that I was just a single developer working in a small company, so I decided to focus on helping and teaching other developers. I started by delivering pure technical training, but the topics soon expanded to include process and people, because I realized that just introducing a new tool or a technology by itself does not necessarily make teams more successful.

 

During the past six years as an independent ALM consultant and TFS specialist, I have helped many companies set up a team environment and software development process with VS. It has been fascinating to watch how removing unnecessary, manual activities makes developers and entire projects more productive. Every team is different and has its own problems. I’ve been surprised to see how many ways exist (both in process and tools) to achieve the same goal: deliver customer value faster though great software.

 

When teams look back at how they worked before, without VS, they often ask themselves how they could have survived without the tools they use now. However, what had changed from the past were not only the tools, but also the way they work as a team.

 

Application Lifecycle Management and practices from the Agile Consensus help your team to focus on the important things. VS and TFS are a pragmatic approach to implement ALM (even for small, nondistributed teams). If you’re still not convinced, I urge you to try it out and judge for yourself.

 


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Customer Reviews

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An expert will find new ideas or new ways of thinking about agile software engineering in here as well.
Chris Clements
Personally I think the book should have been titled "Developing with Visual Studio and TFS using the Scrum Template".
T. Anderson
I highly recommend this book to anyone involved with the software development, irrespective of the role they play.
Ognjen Bajic

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By T. Anderson TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 28, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I own the first version of this book and was looking forward to the second version. I would say if you want to get familiar with doing Scrum with TFS this is the book you want. It really does not cover the other templates at all. I am not saying that is bad, but it is not what I expected or wanted. I already have read enough on Scrum to last me a lifetime. I wanted to see more on the other templates.

All that said, if you have not had the opportunity to get familiar with Scrum this is a great place to get started, especially if you use TFS.

The book starts out with an introduction to agile, Scrum, and Visual Studio. It then digs into Scrum and TFS with chapters on Product Ownership, Running the Sprint, Architecture, Development, Build and Lab, Test, Lessons Learned at Microsoft Developer Division, and Continuous Feedback.

My favorite chapters were Development, Build and Lab, and Test. The author did a great job of showing all the different features available in TFS and Visual Studio that enable continuous integration, automating testing, and detecting programming errors early. The chapters go into enough detail to give you a really good understanding of the tools available and when to use them.

The architecture chapter did a good job of showing how to take advantage of the tools in Visual Studio for reverse engineering existing applications. It does not however show you how to use them to architect an application. Instead the author plays the "Emerging Architecture" trump card, and writes it off to it not being needed in agile processes. I guess this is ok, because the tools in Visual Studio are not ready for prime time when it comes to designing an Architecture. They are good for reverse engineering an application.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Ognjen Bajic on November 8, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Agile software development methodologies have been proven on projects large and small. Nowadays methodology of choice is Scrum. It empowers multidisciplinary teams to successfully implement complex software and ensures the continuous flow of value through the development process.

This book will teach you how to successfully implement Scrum using integrated set of tools from Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 (VS) and the Team Foundation Server 2010 (TFS) and create automated process maximizing flow of value. In addition to the usual sprint and daily cycles, TFS based implementation of such process also exhibits micro cycles like check in and test. Ensuring the flow by making handoffs between team members as efficient as possible, by automating quality enforcing steps i.e. dones and gathering metrics without overhead at every cycle are cornerstones of this efficient process.

The book goes beyond teaching you how to apply Scrum using VS and TFS. Reinforcing the flow of value by introducing removal of waste (bug debt, partially implemented features, unfinished code etc.) impeding the flow and transparency pinpointing the weak spots in the process, further ensure success of the development project. Guckenheimer and Loje teach how to identify different types of waste and deal with them. They do a great job explaining how to read different reports and analyze dashboards to gain real-time insight in progress, quality and other aspects of your project.

VS and TFS aim at empowering the whole team.

Architects can analyze legacy code or continuously validate the current architecture with every daily build using layer diagram.
Developers will learn how to write clean code from the beginning and detect errors early.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Chris Clements on February 11, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Full disclosure: I am a senior technical writer at Microsoft, have worked with Sam and Neno for some time, and have worked on these technologies for over six years.

That said, take it from someone who has done writing and a ton of reading on the subject matter that the authors cover in this book. It's simply an exceptional resource, written by two people I consider to be among the very best at what they do. Whether you are new to Agile, Scrum, Visual Studio, and/or Team Foundation Server, or a veteran with all of them, this book has something to offer. It is very, very thorough and insightful. A newcomer could use it to ramp up quickly -- it has incredible span across the subject matter. An expert will find new ideas or new ways of thinking about agile software engineering in here as well. The language is clear and easy to understand, the examples are poignant, and it's a very interesting read -- even for guys like me who have read volumes about this stuff. Again, keeping full disclosure in mind, I am recommending this book because I've read it and I think it's an outstanding and valuable resource.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Matteo Emili on January 22, 2012
Format: Paperback
This book covers lots of important parts in the development lifecycle of an application in a very clear and understandable way, making it a must for who works in the software engineering field.
It's invaluable because of its content, which spreads from Scrum basics, to Visual Studio Team Lab Management, and because of the way the content is written.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Luis Fraile on January 12, 2012
Format: Paperback
Are you writing .NET software with Visual Studio 2010? are you interested or already using Scrum or agile? are you interested in ALM? if so to any of these, this is your book.

I know Sam and Neno from time ago (disclosure), and they are two of the people who I really trust about creating software and using agile methodologies. With this book you will get a nice insight about how to use the Visual Studio ALM tools for team software development, covering topics as the agile concepts and values, and how to apply them in the software development process.

It is not a book about how to use Visual Studio in detail, it is a book which will guide you around the different processes you will need to do using Scrum.

So, a great book I would recommend to anyone starting or already familiar with agile, Scrum and/or Visual Studio 2010, a definitive must read.
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