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Topic From October 2008:
Date: Tuesday - October 21, 2008
Topic: What Agile Can Learn From Waterfall And
What Waterfall Can learn From Agile
Speaker: Michael Mah


What Agile Can Learn From Waterfall And What Waterfall Can Learn From Agile

Strategic software development is happening every day - and failures continue to plague us. Unquestionably, a major paradigm shift is underway with the movement to agile methods. But are they really working? With results drawn from industry statistics, Michael Mah answers vital questions about the effectiveness of agile methodologies - XP, Scrum, TDD, pair programming, etc. One discovery underway is that agile methods could be turning the "law of software physics" upside down. For decades, there have been predictable relationships among schedule pressure, staff ramp-up, and bug rates; now, industry data tells us that all this could be changing with agile - or not.

Join Michael Mah for a revealing discussion of productivity findings at five - all ostensibly agile- companies, and how they produced a range of results for time-to-market, productivity, and quality. Michael addresses questions such as: Which agile practices are right for your environment? What are the characteristics of a successful agile deployment? How do you measure success or failure of agile process change? Find out how the five case study companies "did" agile in their own ways and how their metrics reveal insights into new agile approaches that are fast becoming mainstream.

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About the Speaker

Michael Mah

Michael Mah is director of the Benchmarking Practice and author with the Cutter Consortium, a Boston-based industry thinktank. He's also managing partner of QSM Associates Inc, a firm specializing in software measurement, project estimation, and "in-flight" control for both in-house and outsourced/offshore development. QSM has developed and maintains one of the largest databases of more than 7,500 completed projects collected worldwide, with productivity statistics and trends on cost, schedule, and quality from more than 500 organizations and 18 countries.

With over 20 years of experience, Michael has written extensively and consulted to the world's leading software organizations while collecting data on projects worldwide. He has been a featured keynote and main stage speaker at conferences such as Agile 2008, Agile Development Practices, the Better Software Conference, SD Best Practices, and numerous SPIN chapters throughout North America. Michael's background is in physics, electrical engineering, Far Eastern history, and mediation. Michael's work examines the dynamics of teams under deadline pressure, and its role in contributing to success and failure. He lives in the mountains of western Massachusetts with his two young children.

Michael can be reached at QSM Associates, Inc., Clock Tower Business Park, 75 So. Church St., Pittsfield MA 01201. Web Site: Or via Cutter Consortium, 37 Broadway, Arlington MA 02474:

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