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Agile Tools vs. Agile Books

The value of tools over the value of books in the agile world

11/26/2010 by Paul Heidema

I have been working with Agile for a couple of years. At Berteig Consulting we are using Agile to run our small business. As such we try to use various tools to make our life easier. We have used CardMeeting for our cycles and tasks. I have tried using PlanningPoker for online estimation. It seems useful, but maybe our team is too small to make great use of it. I am also looking for other ways to manage the reflections and learning from each cycle.

I have received an email from David Wolrich of CardMeeting that states: “Anyways, I rely on the trickle of news from legitimate organizations like yours to let users know that CardMeeting is still around, that I am still adding features, and to generate interest; thanks again.” So maybe some of you could try it and give him a shout. Much like other free applications on the net such as Drupal and Neo Office this one could become more robust and useful.

I am wondering if I am spending too much time on tools and not enough reading and researching Agile methods. I am enjoying reading about Agile success stories. Agile tools such as a digital wall application can be quite useful. However, books written by those with plenty of experience may add much needed insight into to do's and don't of implementation agile methods.

One of the best books that I have read which is clear and to the point is "Kanban and Scrum: Making the Most of Both". I enjoyed this book because it used plenty of straight forward diagrams and explained both methods with tremendous clarity.

Are tools better than books when it comes to Agile?