Sunday, July 28, 2013

Speaking at Lean, Agile and Systems Thinking conference, Melbourne


Lean, Agile and Systems Thinking (a.k.a LAST) conference is a popular conference for Agilists in Melbourne.  The conference is on 2nd Aug at SwinBurne University.

I will be speaking about my favorite topic : Does Agile help in building Innovative products ?.  Check out more details about this conference here
If you are in Melbourne, don’t miss the opportunity to attend this event.

photo credit: Bill Selak via photopin cc

Complexity theory at 30,000 Ft

Here is the complexity theory article published on  Techwell.   This is at 30,000 Ft Level.

Most of our view about the world is based on cause and effect, which in turn is a linear way of thinking. However, the world works in a non-linear fashion with multiple agents acting in parallel. System thinking addresses this non-linearity by considering different parts of the system, their relationships with one another, and the entire system itself to solve a problem or create a future state. Some of the tenets include holism and reductionism.

The complexity theory, based on the premise of non-linearity, is the study of complex systems. Complex science embraces life as unpredictable, adaptable, and evolving. The key difference to systems thinking is that the complexity theory tends to solve a problem or build the future state with the assumption of uncertainty. Patterns and abstractions are used to understand complex systems.

Another key concept discussed focused on innovation. Chaos and randomness are the foundations for all innovations. It is proven that a detailed plan with a highly structured process won’t help in building a radical, innovative product.

Constraints emerge from the system to manage chaos and randomness, and the right level of constraint leads to self-organization. However, an over- or under-constrained system is not good for agility. There seems to be myth for agile teams regarding self-organization. Many professionals believe that just allowing the team to function on its own will lead to self-organization. In reality this is partially true; the leaders need to guide and ensure that there is the appropriate level of constraint emerging from the system.

and remaining part of this article is available here

Monday, July 22, 2013

360 Degrees feedback

The maturity of the company depends on trust and courage of employees. If the company is still using anonymous surveys to collect 360 degrees feedback, isn’t it a reflection of lack of trust and courage ?

Do you know any organization who gathers 360 degrees feedback in person ?

Evaluating testers – Past and Present

Here is one of  my guest post on Zephyr : Evaluating  Testers: Past and Present 

Just a gist of the article is below,

image Software testing has come a long way since 1960’s from debugging to defects prevention oriented approaches.  However, one thing that hasn’t changed much is the way the testers are evaluated. Let us look at the history and patterns of different evaluation techniques.

Let us being with the waterfall era. It was very clear that testers job was to catch all the defects introduced during the development stage. Testers had pretty much no options other than keep showing different metrics to prove their existence.

…………….and the complete article is available here

Image courtesy of ddpavumba /

Tuesday, July 16, 2013


imageI recently came across the the Oath of Non-Allegiance.  Now we have different parties pulling the software industry in different directions.  Some of them include, Scrum, Kanban, Lean, ScrumBan, etc.

Each party is willing to bet that their practices will help in Nirvana forgetting the real customer. Even though Oath of Non-allegiance is around from some time, I came across this recently.  This non-allegiance accurately reflects some of my thoughts. We shouldn’t get carried away with the methods but do what is beneficial for the customer.   At the end of the day, the customer and the business doesn’t care the tool we have used, they care about their experience, bottom lines, quality and the value.


Here is the oath of non-allegiance

I promise not to exclude from consideration any idea based on its source, but to consider ideas across schools and heritages in order to find the ones that best suit the current situation. (See

I added this to my blog as well.