I attended Agile Open Spain 2010

Last weekend (November 12th and 13th) I attended Agile Open Spain 2010, which took place at La Salle (Barcelona) and counted with Plain Concepts as the main sponsor.

It’s very difficult to get bored at an event like an Open Space, so my expectations got easily fulfilled. This is a short summary of my experience around there:

  • Working Software, session proposed by Xavi Gost. It was about the importance of working software as the only valid measure of the progress and the commitment acquired to our customers. Big (and often uncomfortable) truths got surfaced
  • Software Craftsmanship with Enrique Comba. It was a quite interesting session, where it was described nicely the approach to software development as an activity closer to craftsmanship than to industrial production (even taking into account that the craftsmen manifested a preference for growing apart from what they called “Rugby people”)
  • Frameworks, yes or not?, with Xavi Gost and Roberto Canales. A discussion took place about the convenience of using frameworks for development. For my taste, the conversation derived too much into “philosophical” terms (I was hoping something more concrete or maybe more close to development with frameworks, rather than the “social” implications that can be derived). But nevertheless very interesting
  • Scrumban, proposed by Ángel Medinilla, Frogtek and Biko. A very convenient way of dealing with all that non-planned demand that tends to be the source of many problems during Scrum projects
  • Training and certification. This session was proposed by me, and during it we were talking about the available options for getting training and certification in the Agile world. We put special attention to the Professional Scrum Developer program from scrum.org, that I’ll explain around here soon
  • Slack (sorry, but I can’t remember the name of the person that proposed the session). We were talking about different ways of assuring a minimum time for relax during the day, which allows the team get to the necessary degree of concentration and make their work better
  • Retrospective. It consisted in several group activities intended to review what happened along the day, and potential improvements. To be honest, the first part, where the most relevant ideas were surfaced by means of a game involving post-its, was not very valuable for me. Mainly because each individual will have something more valuable for her, and does not have to match another’s vision, neither I find a lot of benefit in comparing it with the global vision. On the other hand, subsequent “tribes” game, intended for identifying improvements for future events, revealed itself as very interesting and fruitful for me

As the closing act for the event, we attended an additional session held at a quite different place, sharing dinner, drinks and conversation with a handful of the attendants to the event. Of course, it was at least as enriching as the rest of the sessions that took place during the day Smile

Congratulations to the organization crew, and hope to see you at the next Agile Open…

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