Dark Manifesto for Agile Software Development

We are uncovering better the only ways of developing
software by doing it and helping teaching others do it.
Through this work we have come to value:

Individuals and interactions over and not processes and tools
Working software over and not comprehensive documentation
Customer collaboration over and not contract negotiation
Responding to change over and not following a plan

That is, while since there is no value in the items
on the right, we value only the items on the left more.

The paper and the slides we presented at SPLASH 2012
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About the Authors

Andrea Janes is an Assistant Professor of Software Engineering at the Free University of Bolzano-Bozen, Italy. Andrea holds a MSc in Business Informatics (Technical University of Vienna, 2001).

Giancarlo Succi Giancarlo Succi is Professor of Software Engineering at the Free University of Bolzano-Bozen, Italy. Before joining the Free University of Bolzano-Bozen, he has been Professor at the University of Alberta, Associate Professor at the University of Calgary, and Assistant Professor at the University of Trento, Italy. Giancarlo holds a Laurea degree in Electrical Engineering (Genova, 1988), an MSc in Computer Science (SUNY Buffalo, 1991) and a PhD in Computer and Electrical Engineering (Genova, 1993). Giancarlo has been active in Agile Methods since the late '90s, is one of the two founders of the XP20KY conference series, has worked with companies in this area and has also obtained research grants.

The research interest of Andrea and Giancarlo involve multiple areas of software engineering, including (a) agile methodologies, with specific interest on evaluating empirically the relationships of methodologies and practices, assessing their impact of quality and productivity, and determining the scope of the application of the different agile methodologies; (b) experimental software engineering, — measuring the effectiveness of so called “software best practices” using non-invasive tools, software metrics, standard statistical techniques, statistical meta-analysis and neural networks, with special attention to quality, reliability, and customer satisfaction; (c) open source development — empirical studies of the evolution of open source projects, analysis of the structure of the market in presence of monopolies and open source products, tools supporting open source and agile methodologies; (d) software product lines and software reuse — when and how to establish a software product line and to use domain analysis and engineering to make the software product line cost effective, integrating a reuse policy inside a software development process under the perspectives of programming paradigm, process maturity, productivity, quality, legal issues.

About the Dark Manifesto

We believe, that like most innovations, Agile has followed the Gartner Hype Cycle and it has now reached the Trough of Disillusionment, where it is currently stuck. Moreover, we believe this is due to a “guru phenomenon.”

However, we think that Agile can make a step forward. Our experience lead us to the conviction that through the application of a suitable quality improvement paradigm Agile will be able to reach what Gartner’s experts call the Slope of Enlightenment and eventually the Plateau of Productivity.