From waterfall to progressive delivery: A brief history and peak into the future of software delivery models

New technologies and changing user expectations demands a new vision for delivering software, says Adam Zimman.

By Adam Zimman
June 18, 2019
Spinning top Spinning top (source: WhyCheese via Pixabay)

First there was waterfall, then agile and scrum, then continuous delivery. Now it’s all about progressive delivery for companies hoping to meet the changing demands and expectations of digitally native consumers. Adam Zimman, vice president of platform and product at LaunchDarkly, examines the business benefits of the latest software delivery model, including how rapid delivery counterintuitively leads to reduced risk for companies.

Highlights from Zimman’s presentation include:

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The daughter and mother-in-law problem for software developers is that in 5-7 years, both of these people will be working at companies side-by-side using the same technology, if they aren’t already. The daughter is digitally native, having grown up never knowing a life without the iPhone or slickly designed software. The mother-in-law, on the other hand, will probably call for IT support if the color of a button changes. How software developers handle the technological gulf between these two users will be a massive undertaking. (00:58)

It turns out that companies that deliver software faster to customers also tend to be more stable as organizations. By embracing continuous delivery, companies can keep customers happy by churning out updates and new features, while also becoming better at maintaining that service. This approach works to keep most users satisfied. (06:39)

The next evolution of shipping software is the concept of progressive delivery, wherein companies build updates and features but don’t release them until they are ready or they release them in a phased rollout to specific user groups. Netflix, Google, Facebook, and other large technology companies have pioneered this approach to deliver software at a cadence appropriate for their large, diverse user bases. (11:32)

You can see Zimman’s complete presentation in the video above.

Post topics: Next Architecture
Post tags: Radar Event

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