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Questioning Extreme Programming by Pete McBreen

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Chapter 2. What Do Methodologies Optimize?

 

All methodologies are based on fear.

 
 --Kent Beck [Beck, 2000, p. 165]

Are all methodologies optimized for risk mitigation? I don't think so. Kent Beck's sound bite that methodologies are based on fear is an obvious overstatement, but it does neatly frame many of the conversations surrounding Extreme Programming. It also positions Extreme Programming as the macho, fearless approach to software development and has the hidden implication that only wimps would choose to use a more traditional software development process. Small wonder, then, that Extreme Programming has generated such controversy.

Why the Focus on Fear?

To understand this we need to look at the background of Extreme Programming. Although it ...

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