Pragmatic Thinking & Learning

I just started reading the book “Pragmatic Thinking & Learning” published from the Pragmatic Programmers. Although I only read only the first few chapters so far, I am so excited about it that I thought I should write a line or two about it. If you are in Software development and want to learn the dynamics of software development and software development teams, you must read this book. This is by far the most impressive non technical book I have read so far.

Here is a snippet to give you some test:

Dreyfus at Work: Herding Racehorses and Racing Sheep :

In one of the Dreyfus studies, the researchers did exactly that. They took seasoned airline pilots and had them draw up a set of rules for the novices, representing their best practices. They did, and the novices were able to improve their performance based on those rules. But then they made the experts follow their own rules. It degraded their measured performance significantly.

– How true! Can you have the same set of rules for your top developer who is at “Expert/Proficient” level and the average developer who is @ “Novice/Beginner” level ? How can you explain intuition to the developer who needs a recipe? (If you don’t know what I am talking about, go read the book). This is one of the top challenges I have faced adopting SCRUM coming from a strict hierarchical team management. In SCRUM everyone from Novice to Expert seems to have the same “voice” and sometimes it just holds you back. But hey, the efficiency of a SCRUM team is often measured by the efficiency of the weakest node of the team! So thats fair enough 🙂


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