Agile Development

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"Eye-opening but not thorough enough for the basic practises" - by Orlin Georgiev
A good book overall, gives you a solid foundation. Explains well what Agile should feel like and what makes it tick.

The main drawback is that it doesn't describe well enough the basic practices and ceremonies of Scrum. To use the book's own terminology, it lacks "shu"-level rules, but is way too thorogh with "ha"-level concepts. You may need additional resources to actually get to using Scrum in your work

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"The most practical guide to agile available" - by Peter Borsella (Pompano Beach, FL USA)
Mike Cohn continues in his tradition of writing some of the most practical books available in the agile environment. His vast experience is evident in his approach to presenting the many questions practitioners and newcomers alike consider as they move ahead with agile practices. Without being dogmatic he provides the pros and cons of the issues at hand, helping to understand why one approach might be more desirable than another. As one example, in presenting the difference between feature teams and component teams, it would have been very easy (and overly simplistic) for Mike to indicate that feature teams are the way to go. Instead, he acknowledges that feature teams are strongly recommended, but that component team might be the right choice in some situations, and he explains what those situations might be.

This book also makes a great reference. Have a question about the role ... full review

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"Puts agile methods into a nice focus" - by H. Calhoun (Texas)
I'd expected a much more detailed description and case studies of agile methods. The actual presentation on the concepts is only that, a summary of the concepts. The rest of the book is a lot more detail on the core concepts of good practice and the application of patterns. This is excellent material and it is well presented and interesting. You'll learn a lot of good insites. The examples were informative but not really detailed enough to leave you feeling you know the material in one reading. This book takes some real study for the informaton to sink in. I bet if your developing code you'll really gain from the re-visiting sections of the book until it becomes second nature. Your going to want to give this book to your friends.

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"Excellent book for new or established Scrum Teams" - by Joshua Chappell
I have highly enjoyed reading Essential Scrum. As an IT Manager that is several years into an Agile transformation, I expected to get a small amount of value out of reading this book. However, I was surprised by the depth of information and analysis around each topic. For example, the compare and contrasts between traditional Waterfall development, Scrum, and Kanban was very interesting. I have used some of the tables from chapter 1 to help my non-Agile-initiated colleagues gain some appreciation for why incrementalism, continuous delivery, etc. are often better than traditional PM and development approaches.

Some other examples:
Being less familiar with Lean and Kanban, I also benefited greatly from the information about Work in Process (WIP)/small batch sizes, and this translated into re-inspecting my organization's support & maintenance workflow for improvements.
I also got a lot out of the chapters on User Stories and Product Backlogs: handling non-functional requirements, ideas for ... full review

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"Well distilled and nicely told" - by Lukasz (Redwood City, California)
One of the more drastic transitions at my current job was formally adapting Scrum in place of an informal, best-effort approach we used before. This book helped me grasp what Scrum is really about in less than an hour. There is no filler here, no anecdotes nor reiteration. Pure content, well distilled. Just what I needed. We have been trained more thoroughly since but it was this book which got me going.

I wish more introductory books were like this one: skipping the waffle, delivering just the gist of the subject.

Update: when I originally wrote the review, the book had display problems on Kindle Touch. This issue has been fixed since. The font size is very small but legible. One could argue this is deliberate for an introductory reference material, this way it's very easy to leaf through the book.

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"One of the best technology books" - by J. Mucsi (Dublin, CA United States)
I have tried to read agile books in the past (since 2000 to be precise), but somehow I always lost interest and could rarely apply what I saw. Over the years, as a developer, I was experimenting to become effective (successfully) until I found this book right on time. I was pleasantly surprised that the direction I was going in my daily practices were mostly right. Finally somebody put together a book with the sharpest insights that you find very convincing and can immediately put to use! I still think that some of the propositions of agile programming go against humane nature (who likes to sit with an other coder 8 hours a day?), but the authors have great skill at explaining the details of how things work in real life, so the reader is more willing to try out XP practices that seem initially very steep.
I highly recommend this ... full review

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"Great for learning how to complete projects faster/better" - by Michael Cohn (Lafayette, CO USA)
This is the book I've been wanted for years. Until this book, the Scrum development process was not very well known and was documented only piecemeal in a couple of papers and websites. Finally, there's a book a that covers everything you need to know to run your software project using Scrum.
Schwaber is the "Godfather of Scrum" and essentially invented the techniques; Beedle was one of the first converts to Scrum and together they definitely know their stuff.
The book covers everything from the theoretical basis for Scrum to how to organize your teams, conduct daily Scrum meetings to keep things moving along, to planning your Scrum project, to tracking the "backlog" of items that need to be completed to finish a project.
Scrum is not a rehash of another methodology. As the authors say, "Scrum is different." Some of the things you'll learn in this book will seem counterintuitive but they ... full review

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"Still Coming Back to this Title 3 Years Later" - by Jean Tabaka (Boulder, CO USA)
I bought Mary and Tom's book when it first came out in 2003 and knew immediately that it would have a lasting impact on my vocabulary around agile software development. Their view of applying lean thinking and lean development to software development gave the entire group of agile methodologies (Scrum, XP, Crystal Clear, etc.) something truly solid upon which to hang their collective hats. For my part, it gave me the theoretical background I lacked while also giving clear practical advice about how to apply the theory. Eliminate waste, amplify learning, delay commitment, delivery fast, empower the team, build integrity in, and see the whole. These are the 7 principles of Lean that are then applied directly into software development practices.

It is now several years later and I keep coming back to this title, not just for my own reference, but also for my clients. In my work as ... full review

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"A Must-Have Guide" - by Michele Sliger (Denver, CO United States)
This book is just terrific. It's precisely what it promises to be: a field guide for those already familiar with Scrum and in the midst of a Scrum adoption. Each chapter stands alone and can be read in any order, so it's a breeze to simply locate the problem you're having in the table of contents, and then read the chapter or chapters that address that issue. Each starts with a story pulled from Lacey's real-world experiences, then discusses how the problem was resolved and additional approaches for addressing the problem.

But you probably won't stop there, because the stories are just so interesting. I found myself planning to read just a couple of chapters, and ended up a few hours later with half the book read. The chapters are just so well-written, each starting with a compelling story that had me going "oh yeah, I've been there" and wanting to ... full review

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"Pactical, Easy read. Answers what, why and how." - by Animikh Sen (Charlotte, NC)
The book is well structured and easy to read. In my humble opinion, it comes with a strong "buy" rating for any Agile practitioner or a current PMI certified person who wants to contribute to the knowledge economy of ever changing requirements. The book is right sized (finish in a coast to coast trip in US). Practical in its content, it provides lots of examples and case studies, from software as well as non software fields to illustrate the concepts. The detailed case study at the end of the book is invaluable.

Several chapters were much thought provoking, specially how to handle team dynamics and cross team estimation. The book did not right fully delve into any details of that, it's a topic for another time.

Part I of the books sets up the context.

Part II details on estimating the size, and the techniques and tools for doing that; in ... full review

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"Amazing book!" - by Amazon Customer
Highly recommended for all PMs looking for greater knowledge and insight to a more Agile approach in project management.

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"Great if you want to really understand what's going on" - by N. Krumpe (Ohio)
This is a good match for how I prefer to learn. It is unlike most technical books I've used. If you're looking for a technical reference, this might not be the way to go. But if you want hands-on learning that doesn't talk down to the user, this is a great choice. Here are some aspects I've really appreciated:
* Each chapter makes sure you accomplish something, whether it's the installation and setup of your environment, or an actual working piece of software.
* Time is taken to explain what's actually going on. Rather than "here, type this, it works", the author takes the approach of "here, type this, and here's what's going on under the hood." That means a lot to me, because I don't like code that I can't understand.
* The book's approach encourages tinkering. This is a natural consequence of explaining to ... full review

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"Great and Gentle" - by Kindle Customer (Sea Bright, NJ)
As I work to.launch a new product and team, this was an invaluable resource! It is a great starting point to gain a comparative understanding of the various development methodologies in very short amount of time. Truly worth your investment if you are trying to sort out these approaches or trying to learn enough to take next steps.

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"Great book" - by Trey Watson
This book was my first book read on agile development. It explained everything well, but I felt that the author was very interested and preferred the extreme programming model. All in all still a great read with good insight provided.

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"Finally... A Non-fiction Story of Agile Success" - by T Anderson (PA USA)
I must admit that before I began reading this book I truly thought it was going to be another twisted story of an attempt at agile that failed in everyone's eyes except for those that needed to say it was a success. That is what I am used to.

It is kind of like when I am on a product reference call to CIO. The product is always great and the company who sold it is always wonderful. Why some people think the CIO is going to say they didn't do their due diligence when picking a vendor, and the product and company we are asking about sucks, is beyond me?

They never do. The same is true of almost all the agile projects I have seen. They end over budget, buggy, and pretty much the same way most projects end that use any other process, but they are always deemed a ... full review