Agile & User Experience: What are the common denominators?

16 Dec 2008 - 4:00pm
935 reads
Dave Robertson


First - apologies to subscribers of SIGIA and IxD for cross-posting...

My name is Dave Robertson, and although you can't see him, this is my
partner, John (JJ) Johnston. We've been asked to deliver a presentation
for friends of ThoughtWorks Canada in January (to which all of you are
welcome to come, but more later). JJ is an agile guy who's interested in
user experience and I'm the user experience guy who's interested in Agile.

We've decided to make an argument that Agile and UX share a number of
common values and that these values should form a foundation for better
integration (rather than simply trying to mash together our respective
techniques or chucking rocks at opposing sides).

Since we were approached in October, there's been a lot of fresh
discussion about "agilux" here and on other lists. Nielsen/Norman Group
delivered their opinion on the topic and Cennydd Bowles made his call for
a common future for the Agile and UX communities. But, as always, we still
see emails on mailing lists asking questions like "How do we mash these
things together?", "Should we mash these things together?" and, most
importantly - "How do we make this work better!?". It struck us that you
might have an opinion about common values, so as part of our presentation,
we'd like to hear and summarize this community's feelings about our
theory, good or bad.

To (hopefully) start the discussion, here are three questions:

1. What role do you play in your projects? Is it as an analyst, a project
manager, a developer, a designer, a researcher or something else?

2. What "things" - goals, objectives, values, attitudes, philosophies -
are most important to you when you do your job?

3. If you've been engaged in projects that have been heavily influenced by
agile and /or user experience, how has it influenced what you value in
your work?

Sincerest thanks!

Dave & JJ

Dave Robertson
Principal Consultant, User Experience
ThoughtWorks Canada
Phone: 403.614.7946
Yahoo! IM: dar_calgary at
Twitter: shoveller

PS: Here are some details about that presentation. Feel welcome to
register if you're planning to be in Toronto on January 20th or Calgary on
January 22nd.

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