The Antimatter Manifesto
I’m not a great fan of manifestos, including the Agile Manifesto. But, knowing what I now know about software development, if I’d been at Snowbird I might have argued for the following:
Antimatter Manifesto for Software Development
We are uncovering better ways of meeting people’s needs (through software)
by attending to folks’ needs and helping others do the same.
Through this work we have come to value:
Humane relationships over coercion and control
Self-directed play over work directed by others
Attending to folks’ needs over working software
Making and responding to requests over following obligations and rules
That is, while there is next to no value in the items on
the right, we value the items on the left much, much more.
Would this make for more sustainably successful – and joyful – software development than e.g. following the Agile Manifesto? And is success and joy what we’re looking for? Are they what we – and our organisations – need?
Some folks seem to have some discomfort with the third line, above: “Attending to folks’ needs over working software”. I expressly chose this wording to highlight that the “folks” we’re talking about include the people “in charge” of the business. Surely they would like to see their own needs (and the needs of i.e. their customers) met with as little software as possible? After all, software (code) is a liability, not an asset. Indeed, if we can meet everyone’s needs with zero software, wouldn’t that be the best-case scenario?