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Lean Software Development and Theory of Constraints

Vasile V. Alaiba
Greenhorn

Joined: Feb 03, 2006
Posts: 4
Hi,

There is a lot of buzz around agile methods, both in management and software development. My perception as it is know is that Lean Software Development is primarily oriented towards the technical aspects of the SD processes, whereas TOC is a general management practice.

Can both coexist in a company (or department, team) and if yes, what can a manager and his team do to achieve good results?

Thanks


Your education begins where what is called your education is over.
Adeel Ansari
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 15, 2004
Posts: 2874
from TOC I can think of ..... mmm Table Of Contents?
Ilja Preuss
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Sheriff

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 14112
Originally posted by Vasile V. Alaiba:
My perception as it is know is that Lean Software Development is primarily oriented towards the technical aspects of the SD processes


Where does that perception come from? Mine is different...


The soul is dyed the color of its thoughts. Think only on those things that are in line with your principles and can bear the light of day. The content of your character is your choice. Day by day, what you do is who you become. Your integrity is your destiny - it is the light that guides your way. - Heraclitus
Lasse Koskela
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Sheriff

Joined: Jan 23, 2002
Posts: 11962
    
    5
Originally posted by Adeel Ansari:
from TOC I can think of ..... mmm Table Of Contents?

There's also Theory of Constraints...


Author of Test Driven (2007) and Effective Unit Testing (2013) [Blog] [HowToAskQuestionsOnJavaRanch]
Mary Poppendieck
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Joined: Oct 04, 2006
Posts: 62
Theory of Constraints and Lean practices are very compatible. Lean is primarily oriented around principles, however, not specific practices.

On the other hand, Lean does demand a couple of things: Just-in-Time flow and Stop-the-Line quality. To achieve these results in software development, you must figure out how to move rapidly from customer request to delivery, and how to avoid building up a bunch of partially done work or ignored requests that slow down the delivery of value. It also means that you find and fix defects the moment they occur, which pretty much means that you use some form of test-driven development and continuous integration. Large, after-the fact merges and regression tests are not compatible with Stop-the-Line quality.

The Theory of Constraints could be expected to find big-bang integration to be a huge bottleneck in software development, and attack it in a similar manner as I just described.

Mary Poppendieck


Mary Poppendieck
Author of Lean Software Development, Implementing Lean Software Development, and Leading Lean Software Development
 
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subject: Lean Software Development and Theory of Constraints