Skip to content

Software Development News: .NET, Java, PHP, Ruby, Agile, Databases, SOA, JavaScript, Open Source

Methods & Tools

Subscribe to Methods & Tools
if you are not afraid to read more than one page to be a smarter software developer, software tester or project manager!


Agile Bodensee, Constance, Germany, September 28-29 2016

Scrum Expert - Thu, 08/25/2016 - 06:15
The Agile Bodensee conference is a two-day event focused on Agile and Scrum and that takes places on the shore of the Lake Constance (the Bodensee in German) in the southern part of Germany. The first day is dedicated to workshops and open space discussion, the second day will be a classic conference setting. Everything is in German. In the agenda of the Agile Bodensee conference day, you can find topics like “State of (German) Retrospectives”, “The very best of Scrum!”, “Agile Transformation @ Swiss Railways”, “Agile Contracts: Do’s and Don’ts”, “Core of Agile”. The first day Agile Bodensee conference follows the open space format for conferences. Open space is a simple methodology for self-organizing conference tracks. It relies on participation by people who have a passion for the topics to be discussed. There is no preplanned list of topics, only time slots and a space in the main meeting room where interested participants propose topics and pick time slots. Web site: Location for the Agile Bodensee conference: Steigenberger Inselhotel, Auf der Insel 1, 78462 Constance, Germany
Categories: Agile

Agile Cambridge, Cambridge, UK, September 28-30 2016

Scrum Expert - Thu, 08/25/2016 - 06:00
Agile Cambridge is a three-day conference that is focused on Agile software development and Scrum project management. The conference mixes workshops, experience reports and case studies. In the agenda of the Agile Cambridge conference you can find topics like “Baking Security into Agile – An Impossible Task?”, “Why exploratory testing is tightly coupled with agile”, “Scaling agile development at the Government Digital Service”, “Agile at scale – doing it right”, “Old dog, new tricks – or how I learned to be better”, “How to overcome communication challenges in a team”, “End-to-end testing considered harmful”, “Waltzing with branches”, “Modern agile project toolbox”, “Agile silicon engineering”, “Becoming an agile leader, regardless of your role”, “Scaled portfolio experience report”, “Intro to Lean UX”, “The ABCD of database development: always be continuously delivering”, “Test-driving the Internet of Things”, “What does it take to become a great product manager?”, “Radiating information – we need better agile boards!”, “Are Retrospectives Dead?”. Web site: Location for the Agile Cambridge conference: Churchill College, Storey’s Way, Cambridge CB3 0DS, United Kingdom
Categories: Agile

Kurt Bittner Joins as Vice President of Enterprise Solutions

Scrum Expert - Tue, 08/23/2016 - 15:53 has announced that Kurt Bittner has joined the company as vice president of enterprise solutions. In this role, Kurt is responsible for enterprise-level professional software delivery initiatives. Kurt Bittner previously worked for Forrester Research, where he served as a Principal Analyst covering how enterprises are adopting Agile and DevOps practices. Prior to Forrester, Kurt served as CTO—Americas for the consulting firm Ivar Jacobson International. “Increasingly, organizations see software as the key for business success, but to do it well, development teams must be professional., which focuses on professional Scrum through assessments and certification, training and licensed Professional Scrum Trainers, is developing enterprise initiatives to provide that organizational environment that enables multiple teams to work together more effectively,” explained Ken Schwaber, co-creator of Scrum and founder of “Kurt brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to this new role, and will help us drive those initiatives for enterprises, which will enable organizations to adapt and thrive in this period of unprecedented challenge and opportunity.” Kurt will work alongside Ken Schwaber and others to evolve existing and create new ways for organizations to build environments that encourage and sustain scaling professional software delivery, and to drive a cohesive vision for on how enterprises can deliver greater value to themselves and their customers by delivering software in a professional way. Bittner joins from
Categories: Agile

AgileByExample, Warsaw, Poland, October 10-12 2016

Scrum Expert - Tue, 08/23/2016 - 08:00
AgileByExample is a Lean and Agile three-days conference taking place in Warsaw, Poland that helps you learn Agile on live examples. The first day is dedicated to a Lean Agile Dojo with workshops. Keynotes, talks and discussions are all in English. In the agenda of the AgileByExample conference you can find topics like “5 Whys Root Cause Analysis”, “Taking Back Agile: Returning to our Core Values and Practices”, “No time for Planning Poker? Try Silent Sort Estimating Instead”, “eXPert Leadership”, “Time to Clean up the Product!”, “Pair Programming Demystified”, “The Evolution of a Super Agile Software Development Capability”, “Scaling agile at LEGO”, “Choosing Change: How to Enable a Shift to Agile”. Web site: Location for the AgileByExample conference: Multikino UrsynĂłw, Al. KEN 60, Imielin Metro Station, Warsaw, Poland
Categories: Agile

Product Backlog Refinement Checklist

Scrum Expert - Mon, 08/22/2016 - 15:22
Product backlog refinement (or grooming) is an important activity in Scrum projects where user stories are prioritizes, right-sized and estimated. In his book “Agile Reflections”, Robert Galen provides some hints about how to verify that that product backlog grooming has been done successfully and that the right requirements information is available for the next sprint. 1. Sprint planning is incredibly crisp, short and easy; usually taking 2 hours or less for a 2-week sprint. There are NO architectural or design discussions within the meeting—the relevant parts of these discussions having occurred earlier. 2. As a daily occurrence, team members are talking about epics and stories targeted for 2-3-4 sprints in the future. As a result, everyone is naturally aligning with the Product Owners’ vision. 3. The team easily contributes new stories to the backlog which represents non-feature based work; for example: testing artifacts, non-functional testing work, refactoring, automation development, performance tuning, research spikes, etc. Everyone views it as a shared responsibility. 4. The team has a feel for where the product is going long term and maps efforts, designs, theme suggestions, and trade-offs towards that vision. 5. Each sprint’s goal is easily derived from the backlog; i.e., there is a sense of thoughtful and meaningful story collections or themes that easily surface from within the backlog. From time to time, think of these as “packages” for customer delivery. 6. The Product Owner includes team feedback (bugs, refactoring, improvement, testing, etc.) in EVERY sprint – in some percentage of focus. They [...]
Categories: Agile

Agile Africa, Johannesburg, South Africa, August 22-23 2016

Scrum Expert - Thu, 08/18/2016 - 08:57
Agile Africa is a two-day conference for Agile and Scrum practitioners that takes place in Johannesburg, South Africa. Agile Africa is an annual conference where African software professionals meet to listen to leading international and local speaker discussing better ways of developing software. In the agenda of Agile Africa you can find topics like “Alignment at Scale”, “Attack Strategies for Taming Legacy Code”, “Exploring the Options with PopcornFlow”, “Making Retros Work”, “Leader transformation – a side effect of an agile transition”, “Fish ponds and Agile”, “Specification by example”, “Travelling light – The pros and perils of lean documentation”, “Behavior Driven develop your Agile Projects”, “Requirements Engineering for Agile Product Owners: Hunting Value with Structured Conversations”, “Product Owner Vision and Challenges: Managing Agile projects and organizational objective”. Web site: Location for the Agile Africa conference: Wanderers Club, 21 North Street, Illovo, Johannesburg, South Africa
Categories: Agile

Agile Prague, Prague, Czech Republic, September 12-13 2016

Scrum Expert - Tue, 08/16/2016 - 08:00
Agile Prague is a two-day conference focused on Agile and Scrum and that takes place in the capital of the Czech Republic. The Agile Prague conference is running in two parallel tracks in two days, where you can choose from the variety of talks for managers, Scrum Masters, product owners and try agile practices in practical workshops for testers and developers, share the know-how, discuss in the open space. In the agenda of the Agile Prague conference you can find topics like “Potentially Shippable is no longer good enough”, “Going from Scrum to Kanban”, “From total punk to two-week release cycles”, “The four levels of Scrum”, “Rebooting a stalled Agile adoption”, “From Taylorism to Agile organization”, “Improve your communication skills dramatically without saying a word”, “Growing Agile Organizations”, “How to improve software project estimates – The #NoEstimates view”, “Architecture with Agility”, “Agile Innovation – Product Management for turbulent times”. Web site: Location for the Agile Prague conference: OK System Conference Center, Na Pankráci 125, 140 21 Prague 4, Czech Republic
Categories: Agile

Facilitating Product Backlog Refinement

Scrum Expert - Mon, 08/15/2016 - 19:33
It can be complicated to involve the whole team to facilitate product backlog refinement and take part in requirements discussions. I would like to suggest a structure of the PBR (product backlog refinement) meeting that will encourage everybody to speak up and share their ideas on functionality. This presentation explores what facilitation techniques to use for discussion, what prioritization and estimation models are applicable for business requirements, what documents and metrics can help us to make accurate planning and how to track the results of this meeting. Video producer:
Categories: Agile

SwanseaCo, Swansea, Wales, September 12-13 2016

Scrum Expert - Mon, 08/15/2016 - 08:15
SwanseaCo is a two-day conference that takes place in Swansea, Wales. It discusses Agile development, Scrum project management and Software Craftsmanship. The conference includes keynotes and presentations, a discussion panel and time between sessions to network and connect with fellow Agile software developers from around the world. In the agenda of the SwanseaCo conference you can find topics like “Refactoring Legacy Code”, “Meetings or Discipline, It’s Your Choice”, “Agile Remotely”, “Organizational Wide Agility”, “A Toolset for Creating a Potentially Releasable Product Increment”, “User-Story Point estimation: a new approach”, “An Insider’s View Of Agile In The Public Sector”, “The 7 unmentioned challenges of Scrum”, “What Is Continuous Inspection, Anyway?”, “Level Up Your Tests”, “Managing Global Teams: Lessons Learned”, “Surrender the Illusion of Control”, “Spreadsheets are Code”, “Software Craftsmen Need to Stop Coding so Much”, “Lean UX and Agile Development Taking the Public Sector to New Levels”, “Bringing Agile Concepts to Operations”. Web site: Location for the SwanseaCo conference: Liberty Stadium, Landore, Swansea SA1 2FA, UK
Categories: Agile

Agile on the Beach, Falmouth, UK, September 1-2 2016

Scrum Expert - Mon, 08/15/2016 - 08:00
The Agile on the Beach conference is a two-day conference focused mainly on Scrum project management and Agile software development that takes place in Falmouth, on the beaches of Cornwall in UK. In the agenda of Agile on the Beach you can find topics like “Testing in a Continuous Delivery World”, “Build In Quality”, “The design and implementation of cyber-dojo”, “How we implemented TDD in Embedded C/C++”, “Accelerated learning with Mob Programming”, “Keeping distributed agile teams face to face”, “Ship fast!”, “Incredible Agile Teams”, “Agile values and principles – for non software development teams”, “Introduction to Continuous Delivery”, “Being Agile in Business”, “Can Guinness help you estimate?”, “Effective Customer Interviewing”, “The Death of Continuous Integration”, “Value Led Agile Delivery”, “The Geek’s Guide to Leading Teams”, “Making Mad Men more Agile”, “User Story Mapping for Fun & Profit”, “My Kanban Diary”. Web site: Location for the Agile on the Beach conference: Falmouth University, Penryn Campus, Treliever Road, Penryn, Cornwall TR10 9FE, United Kingdom
Categories: Agile

Agile Open California South, Irvine, USA, September 15-16 2016

Scrum Expert - Thu, 08/11/2016 - 08:00
Agile Open California South is two-day conference that provides Agile and Scrum practitioners in Southern California an opportunity for learning and networking. Agile Practitioners and newcomers come together for two days to discuss, examine and otherwise brainstorm the most timely and relevant topics in Agile development today. The Agile Open California South conference follows the open space format for conferences. Open space is a simple methodology for self-organizing conference tracks. It relies on participation by people who have a passion for the topics to be discussed. There is no preplanned list of topics, only time slots and a space in the main meeting room where interested participants propose topics and pick time slots Web site: Location for the Agile Open California South conference: University of California Irvine, Irvine, CA 92697, USA
Categories: Agile

Forming Agile Teams Workbook

Scrum Expert - Wed, 08/10/2016 - 15:21
As stated in the Agile Manifesto, Agile software development is about “Individuals and interactions”. The importance of having a performing team where individuals collaborate is an essential factor for the success of software development projects. In his “Forming Agile Teams Workbook”, Jesus Mendez provides some tools that offer an alternative-proven way to add more structure, transparency and visibility to formation of Agile teams. The approach proposed in the book is based on the famous Bruce Tuckman’s group development theory. This model says that team undergoes various stages during their life: Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing, Adjourning. Based on the practical experience of the author, the book proposes tools for the Scrum Master to help teams getting organized and structured, before navigating to the “Storming” stage of the Tuckman’s theory of group development. Adopting Scrum practices is not always easy and this book open the discussion on all the issues that might occur during this stage, with the daily stand-up meeting for instance. This book is easy to read and well-structured, offering a detailed description of the proposed activities used in team formation. Many tables and figures help also in understanding clearly the proposed concepts. An appendix provides step by step instructions for using the tools and exercises mentioned in the earlier parts of the book. I will recommend this book not only to Scrum Masters and coaches involved in the early stages of Agile projects, but more broadly to every software development (project) manager that wants to improve the cohesion and [...]
Categories: Agile

Agile Alliance Announces Collaboration with IIBA

Scrum Expert - Tue, 08/09/2016 - 16:28
The Agile Alliance and the International Institute of Business Analysis have announced a Memorandum of Understanding that outlines their collaboration on the development of value-add publications, events and engagements for the benefit of the practitioner community and the broader business analysis and corporate community. The proliferation and evolution of Agile techniques and approaches is rapidly reshaping the place and the role of business analysis professionals. This new collaboration will provide opportunities to advance how business analysis contributes to the success of projects using Agile approaches. Agile business analysis is about increasing the delivery of business value to the stakeholders. “The goal of this strategic alliance is to support BA practitioners and their organizations utilizing Agile approaches in being more efficient and delivering better results more effectively,” says Stephen Ashworth, President and CEO of IIBA. “Working together, IIBA and Agile Alliance will further explore the integration of business analysis practices with Agile approaches, share ideas and seek opportunities to support the evolution of Agile business analysis through industry events, joint research and white paper development initiatives.” An important initiative of this new collaboration is the development and publication of a revised edition of the Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide, which was first published in 2013. The revised edition will provide guidance and insight on the effective practice of business analysis in an Agile context both at the practitioner level and enterprise level. The revised extension will include new techniques and approaches and will involve the engagement of volunteer subject matter [...]
Categories: Agile

Amadeus Consulting Offers Tool To Address Scrum Planning Gap

Scrum Expert - Tue, 08/09/2016 - 16:21
Amadeus Consulting has announced the availability of its process tool, ID-GEM for Agile development projects. ID-GEM is a framework that enables organizations to align business value objectives early in the application development process, avoiding the “planning gap” that occurs when development teams jump straight into the “features and functions” phase of development. ID-GEM helps reduce software project failure rates by addressing the need for better front-end planning. Amadeus offers ID-GEM at no charge as a way to give back to the community. Regardless of the development methods used, a project’s business value needs to be determined before assigning sprint tasks. Rather than spending time on the front-end – planning out the entire project, Agile development teams can use ID-GEM to work with business stakeholders to ensure the final output meets the business requirements before initiating the sprint process for developing features and functions. ID-GEM is available now at no charge through a “Process-as-a-Service” model from a hosted web service. The service is initiated via a short questionnaire that matches ID-GEM process guidelines with organizational objectives, values and application-type characteristics. Once the questionnaire is completed, a customized PDF of the ID-GEM Framework is created and delivered to the end-user. ID-GEM then serves as a repeatable process for organizations to use in each and every software project planning process.
Categories: Agile

Agile Nomad for iOS Released

Scrum Expert - Tue, 08/09/2016 - 15:25
Incrementor has released Agile Nomad, a new cloud-based iPad application to increase collaboration and effective communication among agile project team members using approaches like like Scrum, XP or Kanban. Agile Nomads can easily adapt to various project situations and this mobile app is designed to allow them to think, capture and process material in highly flexible ways. For example, project teams can share their content in a traditional, text-based approach, but also via voice recording, images and video recording. The hardware capabilities of a mobile device are highly integrated with this iOS app. Team members can dictate requirements or attach images they took during workshops or meetings without any typing. Because the material is captured in the cloud, they become available to the rest of the team right away. Version 1.0 of the Agile Nomad is now available in the Apple AppStore as a monthly subscription service of $8.99 and $89.90 yearly.
Categories: Agile

Why Scaling Agile Does Not Work

Scrum Expert - Tue, 07/26/2016 - 13:00
There are now several frameworks designed for scaling agile. This talk explains the flaws in such frameworks, why they so often fail to produce the desired effects, and what we should do instead. It also addresses some common organizational obstacles to moving fast at scale: governance, budgeting, and the project paradigm – and discusses how to address them. Warning: this talk includes liberal use of real, statistically sound data. Video producer:
Categories: Agile

Free Retrospective Tools for Distributed Scrum Teams

Scrum Expert - Tue, 07/19/2016 - 08:00
Even if Agile approaches favor collocated teams, distributed Scrum teams are more common that what we might think. Many Agile software development teams are based on a virtual organization. This article presents some free online tools that can be used to facilitate retrospectives for distributed Scrum teams. You will find in this article only tools that are supposed to be used for free in the long term. We do not list tools that offer only a free trial based on duration or the number of retrospectives. We will also only mention the tools that have features specifically dedicated to Scrum retrospectives. There are many other tools that Scrum teams might use, from video conferencing platforms to online whiteboard software. Mentioning all these tools will result more in a book than an article. If you want to add a tool that fits these requirements to this article, just let us now using the contact form. Updates July 19 2016: added Fun Retro IdeaBoardz IdeaBoardz is a free online team collaboration tool. It allows teams to collectively gather inputs, reflect and retrospect. It is especially useful for distributed teams. For Scrum retrospectives, you can create two types of boards: standard or starfish. More board options are available (pros & cons, to-dos) that could be also useful. You can edit the titles of the sections of your board. The interface seems very intuitive, but sometimes I ended up in some situations where I didn’t know how to exit gracefully, for instance when I [...]
Categories: Agile

Agile2016, July 25-29, Atlanta, USA

Scrum Expert - Mon, 07/18/2016 - 15:31
Organized by the Agile Alliance, Agile2016 is the annual Agile conference and the biggest event in the world on Agile software development and Scrum project management. Agile2016 offers an unprecedented opportunity to learn from world-class experts and thought leaders while networking and collaborating with up to 2,500 Agile professionals from over 40 countries. In the agenda of the Agile2016 conference, you can find topics like “Dynamic Reteaming”, “Distributed Agile: Evolution or Delusion?”, “Coaching Nightmares: Insights we can Learn from Gordon Ramsay”, “Finding Agreement When Everyone Is Right”, “Making Infrastructure as Awesome as Agile Software”, “The Executives Step-by-Step Guide to Leading Large-Scale Agile Transformation”, “Creating Alignment with The Product Wall Release Planning Workshop”, “Intro to Agile Product Management”, “Decoding the Enigma of Product Discovery & Feature Prioritization”, “How to Get Your Whole Team Talking”, “Visual Communication for Groups”, “The Agile Database Techniques Stack: Bridging the Agile/Data Cultural Divide”, “Building Large, Mission-Critical Software and Systems with SAFe 4.0”, “Organizational Agility: It’s Not a Sprint, It’s a Marathon”, “Just Enough: Minimally Viable Agile”, “Agile Testing Maturity – What does “Good” Look Like?”. Web site: Location for the Agile2016 conference: Atlanta, GA, USA
Categories: Agile

Lean, Agile & Scrum Conference, Zurich, Switzerland, September 13 2016

Scrum Expert - Thu, 07/14/2016 - 08:30
The Zurich Lean, Agile & Scrum Conference (LAS) is a one-day conference taking place in Switzerland that focuses on Lean and Agile approaches for software development. The conference provides both German and English content. The keynotes of the Zurich Lean, Agile & Scrum Conference will be Chris Matts and Niels Pfläging. In the agenda you can find topics like “Risk and the Agile Organisation”, “Cynefin Applied”, “From Goal to Code”, “Agree or Disagree, but Commit”, “Facilitation Dojo”, “Process- and Team-Performance”, “Transforming your Culture with Working Agreements”, “Storytelling in a Technical World”. Web site: Location for the Zurich Lean, Agile & Scrum Conference: TECHNOPARK ZĂĽrich, Technoparkstrasse 1, 8005 ZĂĽrich, Switzerland
Categories: Agile

AgileNZ, Auckland, New Zealand, November 29-30 2016

Scrum Expert - Thu, 07/14/2016 - 08:15
The AgileNZ Conference is a two-day conference taking place in New Zealand and focused on Agile project management and Scrum. The main theme for AgileNZ Conference is Delivering Digital. Lean and Agile approaches are not only continuing to transform software delivery, they’re being adopted outside of software to transform entire businesses. In the agenda of the AgileNZ Conference you can find topics like “What Would It Take to Have an Agile Enterprise?”, “Making Integral Agility Real on Your Team”, “Bugger the Boxing – Pour the Concrete Anyway!”, “Visual Facilitation”, “Full Stack Agile”, “Growing Agile Leaders – The Inconvenient Truth”, “Creating an Agile Data Culture in GOV.UK”, “Continuous Security – Securing Agile Development Environments”, “Why Traditional BA Practices Are a Blocker to an Agile Transformation”. Web site: Location for the AgileNZ conference: Auckland, New Zealand
Categories: Agile