It is my pleasure to offer the Agile community a new resource, an Agile Forum. I'm hoping it will be a brand-neutral, consultant-neutral place, open to and shared by everyone who is interested in advancing him- or herself in Agile, or in bringing Agile to the world. I'm inviting you to help make it a place you'd like to be.

An Open Agile Forum

As I mentioned in my pre-announcement, I’ve opened an Agile Forum that is intended to be owned and operated, not by any corporate entity or any individual, but by the people who are interested in making Agile software development be the best thing that it can be. I’m funding the site (not a big deal), and am one of its admins. As discussed below, I’m opening the doors to as many helpers as want to help run it, and more importantly to as many contributors as will come along and provide thoughts and conversation. This site will remain the platform for my opinions and ideas: the Agile Forum is for you. I do have some hopes, which are reflected in the first forum topic areas:

I hope that the forum will address the Agile conferences, thinking of ways to make them better and to make sure that there are the right events to serve the whole world, and to serve everyone at every level of Agile experience, from beginner to the most experienced. I’ve started a topic forum called “Agile Conferences” where you’re invited to express your thoughts on the conferences that exist and the ones that should exist, to describe changes you would recommend, and most importantly, to find ways to work to make the changes happen.

I hope that the forum will address moving Agile forward. In the topic forum “Advancing Agile”, you’re invited to help us find ways to solve more problems in the Agile fashion – and at the same time to help Agile become more simple, avoiding the Giant Method Syndrome that is in my opinion just what Agile isn’t supposed to be.

I hope that the forum will address cultural issues, in the topic forum “Culture”. There, you’re invited to help us learn how to fit Agile into existing cultures, and, more importantly in my opinion, how to influence cultures to adopt the values that Agile brings. Agile values, as I understand them, are trying to bring about organizational cultures that are more free, open, and cooperative than we always find today. We need to help Agile survive in the real world, and to make the real world better.

Other Topic Forums

There are a number of other topic forums, all listed in the Category “Meta”:

  • Sandbox -- This is a "scratchpad" forum for you to experiment with to get used to how things work.
  • Admin -- Here, the administrators can post any announcements, and anyone can post ideas about how to improve the forum or tips on how to use it.
  • Community Announcements -- This area allows you to post any announcements you wish to make to the community. Courses you're teaching, sessions you're putting on, whatever. This is the place where your commercial material is welcome.
  • Other Agile Topics -- If an Agile topic you want to talk about won't fit in the top three areas, this is the place to put it. Topics that pick up significant interest will be given their own topic forums.
  • Off Topic Discussion -- If you need to talk about religion, sex, or politics, or anything else not pertaining to Agile, this is the place.

Other Facilities

Right now, there’s nothing on but the forums. I anticipate that with growth there will be a need for more facilities. We may want a place to place position papers that have grown out of discussions on the forum, perhaps in a wiki or something even more formal. All those things will be a result of how the forum wants to grow, and what you, the people, want to do.

I’m here to support the forum as well as my limited financial and intellectual resources can, and as you’ll see just below, I’m hoping for lots of help.

Your Participation

The most important way you can participate is to contribute your ideas. The forum will thrive, or not, depending on the contributions you make. I’ve built it – the question is whether “they” will come. They is you, so please come.

The forum doesn’t yet ask for your name, though you will need a valid email to get your password. I suggest that the proper spirit for the thing calls for the use of user IDs that say who we really are. (I hope that all know that TranzPupy is Kay Pentecost (you do now). Chet is Chet, of course. RonUser is me, with a no-status account for testing purposes. Chrno is a fellow from Davenport, Iowa who is helping me with the forum setup.) If you have an important need for privacy, please see me … privately.

The forum does need some administration, and some moderation. (Not too much moderation of course: even moderation can be done to excess.) Right now, with no activity, we don’t need much help, but I’m hoping that will change quickly. If you are interested in helping out, please let me know. Private email or user-to-user (U2U) messages on the forum will work, or post in the Admin list.

Sincere Invitation

I’d like to help make Agile Software Development an even more open and vital community, not dominated by particular brands, particular companies, or particular individuals (even me). I’m placing this forum at your disposal and inviting you to help make that come to pass. Welcome.