Agile Estimating and Planning – A Book Review
Agile Estimating and Planning is a book that is not simply another guide to the agile approach, but one that really delves into it. The book has a perfect mix of theory and practices, and provides concrete experiences to enhance the understanding. It provides a complete set of tools to succeed in projects that have a high unpredictability factor, through estimating, planning and scheduling. Moreover, the book is very well organized and a worthy read, as the author provides business value to the reader at each step.
The first edition of the book comes in paperback, and was published by Prentice Hall in November 2005. The book is approximately 0.8 inches thick, and has 368 pages. The book is a part of Robert C. Martin series, and has a slick cover design. At the bottom of the cover, the author’s name is mentioned, along with a few other acknowledgements. ISBN-10: 0131479415; ISBN-13: 978-0131479418.
Agile Estimating and Planning is for project managers who want to make a transition towards a more agile approach to software development. Furthermore, the book is helpful for everyone who is keen to learn agile development, as it provides the basic knowledge, along with providing a deeper and more detailed understanding for those interested. The book explains all the different methods for agile development, so it can be deemed helpful for anyone interested in any particular area of the agile methodology.
What Customers Say
Craig Larman, a Chief Scientist at Valtech, described the book as a reflection of its author, as it represented great knowledge and deeper understanding of the modern agile methods, along with a passion for high-impact solutions.
Clinton Keith, who works as a Chief Technical Officer at High Moon Studios, was impressed that the book adopted a more practical approach rather than a theoretical one. He also applied the knowledge from the book on development of video games with success.
Todd Little of Landmark Graphics was inspired as the book helped him make more accurate estimates with minimum risks and uncertainties in order to complete software projects.
Content, Approach, Style
Agile Estimating and Planning consists of 23 chapters divided into 7 parts. Part 1 is mostly theoretical, and contains the first 3 chapters. Parts 2 to 5 mostly contain practical information regarding size estimation, planning for value, scheduling, tracking, and communicating. It consists of chapters 4 to 21. Part 6 states and describes a few reasons why the agile planning works. Lastly, the Part 7 is a case study to provide the reader with hands-on knowledge of agile development.
The book is written with a traditional approach, where the reader is introduced with theory first, before delving into the practical area. As the book is divided into parts, chapters, topics, and sub-topics, it is extremely easy for the reader to find what they are looking for. Finally, the book is for both beginners and experienced alike, as it covers the basics along with in-depth information.
Why Buy the Book
Agile Estimating and Planning fills the hole in books on agile practices as it is for both theoretical as well as practical purposes, and for both beginners and experienced as well. Additionally, the book is for people who want to learn the important techniques in the agile approach, such as planning, estimating and scheduling. The book can also be used by people who want to switch from other development methods to agile.
Books that Complement
Ken Rubin’s Essential Scrum gives an insight into possibly the most popular agile method known as Scrum. The book help the reader understand and implement the Scrum methodology successfully.
Agile Project Management (2nd Edition) by Jim Highsmith is a quite similar and informative book on agile, and conveys the knowledge in a simple manner.
Mike Cohn is an author of many books based on the agile methodology. He is the founder of Mountain Goat Software, which is a consultancy firm based on project management. He has more than 20 years of experience in this industry, and worked for many big companies in the past. He is a well-renowned speaker in conferences, and one of the founding members of an organization known as Agile Alliance. Additionally, he is a certified member of IEEE Computer Society.