Scott will be presenting the following sessions
  • Mark Lines

    Mark Lines / Scott Ambler - Work Smarter: Learn, Optimize, Accelerate

    45 Mins

    2021 marks the 20 anniversary of the Agile Manifesto. Yet many organizations are still struggling to clearly improve value delivery for their customers. In this talk Scott Ambler and Mark Lines explain why agile has struggled in the past and what we can do about it.  Go beyond agile rhetoric, agile methods and frameworks and learn how to optimize agility for your situation, not others. We can do better, and it is not difficult. Disciplined Agile can help. The journey starts with an investment in learning, optimizing for your situation, and then removing obstacles to accelerate delivery and delight your customers.

  • Scott Ambler

    Scott Ambler - Data Technical Debt: Looking Beyond Code

    45 Mins

    Data technical debt refers to quality challenges associated with legacy data sources, including both mission-critical sources of record as well as “big data” sources of insight. Data technical debt impedes the ability of your organization to leverage information effectively for better decision making, increases operational costs, and impedes your ability to react to changes in your environment. Bad data is estimated to cost the United States $3 trillion annually alone, yet few organizations have a realistic strategy in place to address data technical debt.

    This presentation defines data technical debt is and why it is often a greater issue than classic code-based technical debt. We describe the types of data technical debt, why each is important, and how to measure them.  Most importantly, this presentation works through

    Disciplined Agile (DA) strategies for avoiding, removing, and accepting data technical debt. Data is the lifeblood of our organizations, we need to ensure that it is clean if we’re to remain healthy.

1. What got you started/interested in modern software development methods?

I first started developing software in the mid-1980s.  In the early 90s I adopted object-oriented development languages following a mostly traditional way of working (WoW).  In the late 90s I started to realize that wasn't an effective strategy and starting experimenting with more streamlined WoW, eventually adopting the nascent agile ideas at the time.

2. What do you think is the biggest challenge faced by the software product engineering community today?

My hope is that people choose to look beyond their specialties, be it programming in a certain language, or focusing on a certain job role such as programmer or tester.  Instead I recommend to people that they choose to expand their horizons and become a generalizing specialist.

3. What do you think are the most exciting developments in software product engineering today?

I'm most excited about the application of artificial intelligence (AI) techniques and technologies to better serve our customers.

4. Why did you choose the topic(s) you will be speaking about at the conference?

I've been working on techniques for people to break out of "method prison" for a few years now.  One of my talks is on how to work smarter, how to continually improve and to do so in a more effective manner than the naive "fail fast" strategies that are all too common these days.  

Since the early 2000s I've been working on Agile Data techniques, in particular Database Refactoring, hence my talk about how to deal with data technical debt.

5. What are some of the key takeaways from your session(s) at Agile India?
  1. It is possible to work smarter, to go beyond the old school agile methods and frameworks such as Scrum and SAFe to truly become a learning organization.
  2. Data technical debt is a serious problem for most organizations, in many cases more serious that code-oriented technical debt, and it is one that must be addressed.
  3. In both cases, you need to look beyond industry rhetoric and choose to take control of your destiny.
6. Which sessions are you particularly looking forward to attending at Agile India this year?

All of them.  

7. Any personal remarks/message you want to share with the software community?

In 1996 I first published the site.  At that time I wrote the following philosophy:

A good developer knows that there is more to development than programming.
A great developer knows that there is more to development than development.

In the following 25 years I have never felt the need to update this philosophy and I suspect I never will.