Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Lean Software Development

Lean Software Development: An Agile Toolkit for Software Development Managers... [Paperback]
By: Mary Poppendieck, Tom Poppendieck

This is a very informative book which looks at best practices that revolutionized manufacturing industry and how they can be intelligently applied to software engineering.

Sometimes in our zeal to bring engineering discipline to software engineering, we strive to make software development like a true engineering profession. However, often times, key distinction that is exists very clearly is  missed. The key distinction is product development v/s product manufacturing. We  miss out product development part of it and try to discipline software development like manufacturing. This book address that distinction very well and gives some nice ways to adopt successful principles of lean development which were pioneered by Toyota.

Authors who have had extensive experience with manufacturing and software development combine their in-depth knowledge of both fields to provide many best practices that can be directly applied to software engineering. 'Avoid wastage', 'Kanban' (JIT) etc. are easy to understand from manufacturing standpoint but translating them into software engineering requires a lot ingenuity. Authors bring this out very well.

'Innovation can not be scheduled' is probably the best punch line of the book. If we get just this out of this book, it's worth it.

Nice perspective and support for agile development practices.


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