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Clean Agile: Back to Basics

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  423 ratings  ·  66 reviews
Twenty years after the Agile Manifesto was first presented, the legendary Robert C. Martin ("Uncle Bob") reintroduces agile values and principles for a new generation of software developers. In this eagerly-awaited book, the best-selling author of The Clean Coder shows how to bring unprecedented levels of professionalism and discipline to agile development -- and thereby w ...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published October 27th 2019 by Pearson
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Sandro Mancuso
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book talks about the history of Agile and, as the subtitle suggests, the basics of it. It also tries to bring some sanity to the subject. Great to see Bob’s perspective after 18 years of the Agile Summit in 2001. It was a pleasure for me to write the chapter on Software Craftsmanship and contribute to this book.
Jurgen Appelo
Dec 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Great back-to-basics overview and historical perspective.
Łukasz Woliński
Jan 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
It's good to be reminded what was Agile (is it a noun now?) all about in the beginning, before it became distorted beyond all recognition by the industry. The book should probably be obligatory for everyone working in IT. Although, I don't agree with everything, especially with the critique of Agile Lifecycle Management (ALM) systems and I don't think that implementation of the presented practices is as easy as Uncle Bob says. If it would be that easy, there wouldn't be so much struggle, especia ...more
Carlos Buenosvinos
Jan 07, 2020 rated it liked it
I'm a Robert C. Martin fan, but this book is the same content from videos and other presentations all over repeated again. There is nothing new. Maybe, for newcomers to the Uncle Bob world, it can be fun to read and they can be delighted by his pragmatism. However, nothing new in the shop. Maybe he could try with different content that we are not so used to from him such us functional programming, for example.
Felipe Albuquerque
Nov 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A must-read for everyone involved on software engineering. Well, if you really want quality and functional software, whether you are an engineer or an executive.
This book is an oasis of knowledge and principles in times like these when Agile is being totally misinterpreted by people who want to do old, unprofessional and ineffective management practices with new "agile" names, roles and complex "scaled" frameworks. It has tons of experience, results and skin in the game in form of sentences.
Angel Castro
Jan 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book is not an introductory text. Indeed, it requires that you'd been in the software industry for the last years because it's a deep analysis of the Agile movement and how and why it was created, and how it has evolved and adopted by the teams and companies.

Robert Martin's vision is clear here. The Agile ideas were good. They tried to solve common problems that the development companies had all around the world. But since its release, the ideas and principles were turned into a completely
...more
Marcus Cramer
Jan 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Agile is like teenage sex - all claim to be doing it but nobody really does properly. This book offers a great introduction to the original foundations of Agile.
Jeanne Boyarsky
Mar 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: technology
This book was a mix of memory lane, tips and essays from others.

The preface explains that this is a small book because it solves a small problem. The author reminisces about the the Snowbird meeting and the start tho the agile manifesto. He talks about 4 agile frameworks. (It's been a while since I thought about XP).

I like that he asks you to count the number of computers in your life. (Did you remember to count things like your clock and DVR). It was fun hearing the origin of the term “checkout
...more
Alexander Teibrich
Sep 24, 2020 rated it liked it
This is probably not a must-read, but still a very interesting, thoughtful and personal perspective on Agile. Martin brings the often forgotten developers side to the equation and strongly advertises software craftsmanship as a way to incorporate the often forgotten and ignored parts of agile (XP, TDD, Pair Programming, ...) into today’s organizations. With this the book is an important contribution to the history of agile!
David Budiman
Jan 23, 2020 rated it liked it
I feel this book is just repeating all the essentials of earlier books in this Clean Code series. Though, it does add new materials taken from Uncle Bob's experiences
Antony
Nov 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wonderfully opinionated (and slightly grumpy) polemic on getting back to the basics of Agile software development. Worth the price of admission just for the extended rant about project deadlines: "What is the first thing you know about a project? Before you know the name of the project or any of the requirements, there is one piece of data that precedes all others. The Date, of course. And once The Date is chosen, The Date is frozen. There’s no point trying to negotiate The Date, because The Dat ...more
Ismail Mayat
Dec 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant absolutely brilliant!!

Too many of us in this industry including myself think we know what agile is and that we are working for organisations who do agile and maybe work for companies who claim to be agile.

Uncle Bob as one of the original signatories to the agile manifesto clears alot of misconceptions.

Will be recommending this book to all at work fellow developers and PM's
Arun Sasidharan
Sep 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tech, agile
Learnt quite a bit about what/how Agile should actually be. Lot of good takeaways and ideas to implement. I always considered Agile to be a project management technique, quite surprised by my utter lack of awareness. Would recommend 5/5!
Paweł Papke
Sep 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
A good book for developers. It tells what it means to be a professional developer.

We read through war stories which teach us principles, concepts and tips on how to stay on track during project development. Uncle Bob reminds us not to cut corners, not to ask for permission to work in a professional manner (ex to ask to set CI), to say early about the problems in the project... and the list goes on.

We learn about Agile fundamentals, why it was born, what problems was it addressing when it was cre
...more
Mikhail Filatov
Jan 03, 2020 rated it it was ok
This book consists of three parts:
1. Short memoir about the meeting where Agile Manifesto had been initiated. Interesting, even, as "Uncle Bob" himself admits he did not check any sources and trusted his memory only and many other participants described it differently.
2. Description of what Agile is - from team, individual, company perspective. It's very confusing part. While the author himself agreed before that "Agile"!= XP all he describes as "Agile" is actually XP. He talks (mostly negative
...more
Henry Suryawirawan
Dec 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned
A great reminder of what Agile is and how it should be. This book outlines the history of Agile, what problems it is trying to solve and what the important principles and practices that should be understood in order to do Agile well. This book is lightweight and doesn't go deep into each of those, but serves as guidance for us to go deeper into each of the topic when required.

For me as someone who already has experience in the industry, this book helps me to deepen my understanding, aware of the
...more
Henke
Jan 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
The book sells itself well. It really is about the basics of agile, with some useful history thrown in. As a software professional, I found it to be very helpful in order to formulate an opinion about practices commonly found in agile, such as continuous integration and refactoring. I want to be clear, there is a difference between saying "XP does refactoring" and "This is why XP does refactoring". This book uses the latter style to convey why different practices are used. Knowing the reason why ...more
Morten
Sep 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A great book on agile and software craftsmanship, written with an emphasis on what the author view as the most important aspect of the agile development process. His wisdom and experience on the subject gives it an honest touch that align with my own view when it comes to agile, and the experience of practicing it for the last 13 years.

My first introduction to agile were through Scrum, that actually worked quite well. We did not follow it strictly, we did estimate, but that were just to give us
...more
Zachary Lysobey
Dec 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: technology
I really loved the introductory chapters of this book, and got a lot out of it as a whole. I have been a huge Uncle Bob Martin fan since my early days as a software craftsman.

However, I did find it to not be super cohesive or targeted in its audience. At times, there seemed to be an assumption that the reader was familiar with all the existing Agile frameworks (Kanban, Scrum, etc...) and the History of Agile and project managment. But then there were chapters which were super basic and explained
...more
Atanas Angov
Jan 24, 2020 rated it did not like it
The first disappointment by Uncle Bob. I don't think I will ever return to this book for whatever reason. It's a shame though! I just love all of his other books! But this one... I didn't find any value in it. Furthermore, 20-25% of the content is taken from other authors (with permission!). It feels like he was forced by his publishers to write this book although he hadn't that much important stuff to say. There are much better books on the topic. I'm just glad I read the book before I purchase ...more
Ygor Nascimento
Mar 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A Must read for all people that is supposed to create any kind of digital product. Agile is supposed to be everywhere. But what we're seeing is something like, not agile at all. This book try to recover what agile is for managers and developers with the fundation that agile was built. In my opinion, this book is for every developer (beginner or not) that want to learn how to develop good code, not only things that "work". As well, it will teach you, manager, how to get the most of Agile practice ...more
Vipin Ajayakumar
Apr 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: programming
This one was recommended to me by a teammate, and is only the second book by Uncle Bob that I have read (first one was Clean Code). I genuinely had chills as I started reading this and I ended up finishing it in just one day. You know that feeling when you want to tell someone how much you agree with everything they said? :P This book is a must read for any software developer.

Here is something that made me laugh: "Some folks think that Agile is about going fast. It’s not. It’s never been about g
...more
Michael Despotopoulos
Maybe an article would be more convenient way to share the content of this book but then again it depends on the audience. If you have <2 years of experience working in an Agile environment go on and read the whole thing, otherwise feel free to skim through it. I enjoyed the exposure of common misconceptions of Agile i.e. that you can't just apply the ceremonies without the technical processes (TDD, pair programming), and some insights around the actual roles of Product Owners and Scrum Masters. ...more
Farid Samadov
Jan 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Agile manifesto is composed of high-level, simple, instinctive statements (and it should be this way, for sure)... But interpretation of this principles on any organizations daily activities is painful, mostly from the perspective of ierarchical vs n/ierarchical structures...
Reading very similiar cases from Uncle Bob's experience somehow brings relief but also brings the urge to fix things up, finally..
Alexander
Dec 28, 2019 rated it did not like it
Shelves: computers
A huge disappointment and easily the worst book from Uncle Bob. There is nothing in this book that wasn't already published; most of ideas are borrowed from Pragmatic Programmer. The chapter about agile coaches written by another guy, which contradicts the author's opinion, is totally out of place. The whole book can be three time shorter and still tell the same story.
Sebastian
An overview of the history, philosophy and practices every agile practitioner should know. Entertaining, to the point, enlightening.

The chapters by guest authors complement Bob's material well. An alternative view on coaching and scaled up Agile creates balance. A chapter on Craftsmanship highlights an essential step in the maturation of agile.
Will Hawkins
Apr 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I especially liked this because of the way that he told the history of the movement! I love that kind discussion. While I came for this history, I got a great introduction to Agile as well. Being a practitioner of Agile, I appreciate the discussion of the subtleties of the movement that are largely missed by drive-by "leaders".
Pramodh
Apr 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
A short book, Uncle Bob C Martin takes you through the birth of Agile to how it is at the present. While explaining that he emphasizes the practices that has worked for him and he has seen it work. Everything that he talks about is battle tested and endorsed by him. Agile is a customized set of practices for a small software development team.
Michał Olejnik
May 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
When you're reading this book it all seems so obvious and simple. And then you remeber all the times you've seen some pathological aberration of Agile. It's good there's a book that gives us some perspective and a concise overview of what this movement was really about and what it was meant to be in the first place.
Bert Roex
Aug 31, 2020 rated it liked it
While this book is a great reminder for the core values that Agile aspires, I felt it had an undeserved strong focus on Test Driven Development and pair programming at the center of technical practices. In comparison to other work of uncle Bob, I found this one to have a somewhat gloomy, cynical, even grumpy take on our profession as Software developers.
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Robert Cecil Martin, commonly called Uncle Bob, is a software engineer, advocate of Agile development methods, and President of Object Mentor Inc. Martin and his team of software consultants use Object-Oriented Design, Patterns, UML, Agile Methodologies, and eXtreme Programming with worldwide clients.

He was Editor in Chief of the C++ Report from 1996 to 1999. He is a featured speaker at internatio
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