I was inspired to blog by Predicts 2010: Agile and Cloud Impact Application Development Directions by Gartner. It SOOOO close to what we are hearing from our customers, and exactly what we are doing to help our customers to do more, faster and better quality.
Gartner’s analysts say: “As organizations seek to improve productivity and reduce application operating and maintenance costs, we will continue to see an evolution of software development tools, platforms and practices. To take advantage of this, organizations must shift structures and practices while embracing new technologies — a challenging proposition.” They go on to predict that by 2012 “agile development methods will be utilized in 80% of all software development projects”. Why will agile become so popular? Agile will deliver much higher productivity compared to other development processes.
Use of agile requires discipline: key agile practices must be used and organizations should invest in supportive tools’ infrastructures. If an organization tries to cut corners by shifting to ‘pseudoagile’ process, potential results are a short-term productivity bump, as well as long-term declines in quality and productivity.
Gartner also gives recommendations how to make most of the agile process, one of them being: Find tools that enable collaboration and help automate repeatable, consistent practices.
Continuous integration is essential part of agile process and it’s purpose is to give automated, repeatable results. And continuous integration does not mean nightly builds, but true continuous integration of the software so that everyone in the development community (be it in-house, outsourced, off-shored or any other globally distributed team) can develop on stable version. No more pseudoagile practices like nightly builds.
With cloud based services, like continuous integration in cloud, companies can make use of essential agile tools without any investments in the infrastructure. A solution delivering higher productivity without investments and a solution growing with the company without any investments is truly a high value proposition!