Thursday, April 10, 2008

Agile/XP programming and the OODA loop

Today, over at Inc.Com, Joel Spolsky of Pragmatic Programmer had an article called Fire and Motion, where he talks about getting your competition responding to YOU. It's a really good post that I think you should read.

When I was reading it, I was reminded of

John Boyd's OODA Loop, and all of a sudden, I realized WHY Agile/XP works. It's NOT the Agile Manifesto. It's NOT Pair Programming, or any of the OTHER tools. Agile/XP is a Tool to speed up your development teams OODA loop massively. One of the tenants of the OODA loop is that a GOOD decision, quickly implemented, beats a PERFECT solution delivered later.

Let's think of what XP/Agile has you do - Short iterations. Observe at what the client needs, and quickly fill that need. Not necessarily with a perfect answer, but something. Then ask the client "OK, Now decide how it needs to change", and then add that. Quick loops

Why I never thought of Agile/XP in terms of OODA before, I don't know, but it was a light bulb going off

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