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The Agile Samurai

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  1,487 ratings  ·  121 reviews
Faced with a software project of epic proportions? Tired of over-committing and under-delivering? Enter the dojo of the agile samurai, where agile expert Jonathan Rasmusson shows you how to kick-start, execute, and deliver your agile projects. Combining cutting-edge tools with classic agile practices, The Agile Samurai gives you everything you need to deliver something of ...more
Paperback, 265 pages
Published October 2nd 2010 by Pragmatic Bookshelf (first published 2010)
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Anna
A very interesting read. I've been looking for ways to better manage my workload and get more out the door quickly; my mom's workplace has been agile from the start while my own follows a more traditional waterfall methodology.

This is by design; when your software mistakes might mean lives at risk or losses to a business in the hundreds of thousands, you tend to be cautious. It's also a product of a software company that's 30 years old- we have been building on our development methodology for a
...more
Peter
May 27, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
For some context, I'm writing this in 2017. This book was written at the height of the 'Agile' fad in 2010. Naturally, a lot has changed since then and somewhat unsurprisingly, this book hasn't aged that well. Most people have either moved on or improved upon many of the practices described in this book. If you've never worked in an 'Agile' environment before (which is highly unlikely by now, but still possible), this book is quite a good resource for seeing where many of the more modern practic ...more
Jacques Bezuidenhout
Really enjoyed the simplicity of the explanations of what needs to be done to be agile, and why.
One mostly knows these things, but there are key points that was spot on.

Things like:
- When you say work is done, it is done. Tested & Ready for production
- You take ownership of your own work
- Writing tests to avoid things breaking, and to know that your change isn't breaking anything else
- Continuous integration & Deployment. Work must be Production ready at any point in time
- Engage / Communicate w
...more
Elwin Kline
Jun 25, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tech
I went through this book as a professional development effort to obtain a greater understanding of Agile. I myself am not in an Agile environment (thankfully), but I do have counterparts that I work with who are. As such, I wanted to give this a go to learn more about it.

I really have mixed feelings about the Agile development process. One thing this book does is absolutely highlight the fact that Agile was created for software development. Which perplexes me as to why so many organizations tha
...more
Chris
Jun 30, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I quite enjoyed this. It gave me some background to Agile processes that I haven't had before.

The master-student thing was really cheesy, but I managed to look past that.
Deniss Ojastu
One of the best books on Agile software development that I have read. Its beauty lies in its simplicity: clear, down-to-earth guide through the Agile principles, planning, estimating, analysis, development, communication with clients, and testing. Some overall principles like honest communication with clients as early as possible, just-in-time and just-enough analysis, visualising your project and your pace of development are covered well throughout the book.

The book is also well illustrated: gr
...more
James Taylor
Sep 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
With Agile methodology, there's basically a template of ideas, rather than a set process that has to be followed. I do find Agile books are often a boring read or have deviated from the subject - and I have to say this is the best one so far. The content is good, and it is presented in a fun, easy to read style; I found myself whizzing through it. I also found it refreshing that some of the examples were situations that didn't go well for the author, rather than boasting about his achievements l ...more
Rick Wilson
I can see the value from some of the agile methodologies. The continual focus on the customer is a necessary component of any product development and is vital to ensuring you don’t get stuck in “solving irrelevant problems” land. unit tests are great and save a lot of time preventing problems and with identification when things go wrong.

A couple of the things I’m not so sure about. Fluidity of roles. It seems to leave a lot up in the air, if everyone on the project is an expert in their field,
...more
Alexandra
lots of interesting tidbits - as somebody using agile it was interesting to see how it 'should' be implemented and which things aren't 'really' part of it but my teams may have made up. It seemed mainly geared towards though who go through shorter project lifecycles. How to apply agile to consulting.
Sofia Neto Canário
Super Valuable & Fun. With Agile Samurai you can have a really fun & precious introduction on Agile and also, really nice resources to explore more.

What I really enjoyed was the cool writing, technical books don't need to be boring & serious to be valuable, and the super useful tips.

Thanks Jonathan, for the tips and all the dialogues between Master and Student!
...more
Luis Cisneros
Nov 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It’s a good book to understand the agile methodology, not only following the “book rule”, is more hands on showing real cases, I really liked this book.
Koen Wellens
Jan 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2017
If you are new to software development, then reading this book should become one of your top priorities. Walking the agile path brings you across the "do not set false expectations" street. There's a route along "act early rather than late" road. You will go sightseeing at the agile dojo where Agile Sensei will share with you the agile reasoning that can give your project a higher chance for success.

When your career has already helped you see some agile practices, this book can help your refresh
...more
Dave Woertman
Mar 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really the best book I've read so far on Agility and Scrum! It gives lots of, easy to understand, examples. It really explains Agility based on its principles and does this with a sense of humor as well! I am quite experienced in Agility, and explaining Agility to others. This book has given me even more ways of explanation.
The only criticism I can think of, is the use of different terminology for the meetings and artifacts in the scrum framework. That will complicate explanation, when used in c
...more
Katya
Oct 16, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: professonal
Nothing special. Book touches upon most of the aspects of agile project planning, easy to read and has plenty of examples in each chapter. As a developer who never worked with agile process, I expanded my understanding in some aspects but no revelations to be found in this book. If you read at least one book or couple of blog posts about agile, probably you are not going to learn anything new. But presentation is nice and somewhat entertaining so you may still like it.
Fraser Kinnear
A very good friend recommended this to me - it's an interesting high level primer on Agile. Something that can be skimmed in a few hours if you are familiar with the subject matter, or read in a few nights.

This was a perfect introduction for me, as I'm new to agile (my work colleagues at work use it extensively). I got a few pages of notes out of it.
Brad
May 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business, 2017
A good introduction to agile, focusing on principles and practical advice. Like any book on agile, it does not get specific enough to put immediately into practice or to cover all scenarios. Easy to read and clear, with effective arguments for agile practices and frank acknowledgements of what causes software projects to fail.
Eric Hopkins
A very solid introduction to agile software design. I have to give the author kudos for not getting religious about his particular agile methodology of choice, and presenting the leading choices equally.
Donatas
Easy to read and refreshing. Boosts motivation to become Agile.
Recommended for both novice Agile practitioners and their managers.
Felipe Gonçalves Marques
Yet another agile book.

The Agile Samurai is another agile book that presents the agile principals as usual. But with two important twists: inception deck and a strong emphasis in co-located teams (it mention it is important, it mention the lack of colocation as a big risk for a project, etc).

I'll start by discussing the second. Co-located teams are restricting, it restricts the talent pool, it forces everyone to be at the same place, it creates an environment for interruptions running free. It i
...more
Mark DeHate
Jul 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Clear, concise, and approachable overview of agile. As someone that's been involved in agile products for a couple of years now, there wasn't anything really groundbreaking for me, though it served as a great reminder of some core principles. It walks a pretty fine line of being both concrete enough to be actionable, yet abstract enough to apply to lots of different types of situations and roles.

This book does contain a vague 'samurai' theme as the name suggests, and I found the occasional inter
...more
Ken Myhra
Aug 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great intro to the concept of agile. A little cheesy with the"tests", but the piece that helps hit home in this book is that there really isn't a set methodology to how you implement agile. Too often in the business world we try to optimize and find the one singular best practice or process and this book helps the reader understand that there is no one way to implement it and that agile isn't a new process ... it's an ideology and a strategic shift in how we need to think about getting jobs done ...more
Boris
Feb 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a very concise and easy to read book, great for people beginning their work in agile concept. Although targeted for organizers first, it is an essential read for team members as well. Agile samurai concentrates on software developer companies, which is a bit narrow at some points, just because the agile concept is so much more than just a software development concept. Still, as a web developer, this is an essential read.
Mattjdavidson
Nov 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this as a review of material before teaching an Agile course for a consultancy. I think the ideas and proposals are great, there are great recommendations suggested from real experience.

I do wish they wouldn't use the samurai analogies and themes though, it really detracts from the message and confuses readers looking to avoid rockstars and ninjas.
Samuel Taggart
Nov 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very approachable book on Agile Software Design. The first section on the inception deck is brilliant and that content can be used on any project, software related or not. The book is totally worth it just for those chapters. Also for a technical book it is very well-written and entertaining.
Russell Folk
I wish I had read this book years ago! It’s a great introduction to Agile Development. It’s written in a light-hearted and fun fashion without the holier-than-thou undertones (or overtones) that some of the other Agile texts have.

If you’re new to the field or new to Agile, give this book a shot!
Elo
Jul 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Gives really good overview of agile development.
Kevin Sheehan
A decent introduction but not very in-depth. Would recommend for teams considering Agile adoption.
Giustino Borzacchiello
This book is fantastic! If you need to learn Agile Software development, read this book and you will not be disappointed
Shreyas
Jan 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good beginner's book on Agile. There's nothing new in here for experienced folks.
Yuanchu Dang
Aug 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Decent read on agile.
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Madriagil: Sobre The Agile Samurai 9 11 May 21, 2016 12:15AM  

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