Extremely appealing

Appearances to the contrary, you don't have to have a shaved head to be interested in extreme programming.

Appearances to the contrary, you don’t have to have a shaved head to be interested in extreme programming.

Lukas Svoboda, above left, and Holden Glova were just two of more than 70 code-cutters who crammed a room at the Auckland Club last week for a two-day conference on the new methodology.

The main draw of the event was Kent Beck, acknowledged as the father of extreme programming (XP).

While Svoboda, of Advantage Group, and Glova, from Alchemy Group in Christchurch might fit the extreme stereotype, they were in the company of many more soberly decked-out developers from outfits including Vodafone, BNZ, Peace Software and Ports of Auckland.

Svoboda, a solutions architect and analyst, says Advantage is considering adopting XP, but it’s early days.

“I’m attracted to it because you end up with fewer defects. It’s a dynamic process; you’re building for the client.”

XP’s 12 principles include guidelines for smoothing social interactions between developers and clients, he says.

Glova, who was taught XP as part of a computing degree he completed last year at Christchurch Polytechnic, describes himself as chief XP evangelist at Alchemy, a web application developer. His campaigning is having some success: Dave Eaves, a senior Alchemy developer, was also at the event to gauge XP’s suitability for the company.

A conference organiser, Ian Mitchell, says technical people are succeeding in introducing the methodology into development houses by stealth.

But he says attendence at the conference by many managers shows XP is gaining respectability.

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Tags extreme programming

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