If Agile is so good, why haven't we always done it?

Fred George has an interesting post on his successfulness with Agile processes. He asks, if Agile is so much better, why didn’t it emerge earlier?

He thankfully rules out stupidity and instead lists the three enablers that we have today that we didn’t have back then (Fred goes back to the 70’s, but I’d say these were just as relevant for most of the 80’s):

  1. We didn’t have the languages (Java, C#, Ruby) and techniques (OO, rules engines) to write code that could be changed. Our paradigms were actually the opposite: Design your data structures, and the code writes itself.
  2. JIT (Lean) hadn’t made it out of the automotive manufacturing sector.
  3. We didn’t have the horsepower. I have more memory in my watch than I had in my first computer. And don’t think of comparing an entry iPod to the first PC.

I’m trying to imagine how horrendous it would be to try and mock some behavior written in 6502 assembler in a unit test, on the Commodore 64!


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