It seems lately there is an intentional disregard of the core principles of business development of software intensive systems. The #Noestimates community does, but other collections of developers do as well.
- We'd rather be writing code than estimating how much it's going to cost writing code.
- Estimates are a waste.
- The more precise the estimate, the more deceptive it is
- We can't predict the future and it's a waste trying to
- We can make decsision without estimating
These notions of course are seriously misinformed on how probability and statistics work in the estimating paradigm. I've written about this in the past. But there are a few new books we're putting to work in ouyr Software Intensive Systems (SIS) work that may be of interest to those wanted to learn more.
- How Not To Be Wrong, The Power of Mathematical Thinking, Jordan Ellenber, 2014
- Standard Deviations: Flawed Assumptions, Tortured Data, and Other Ways to Lie With Statistics, Gary Smith, 2014
- How Many Licks, or how estimate damn near anything, Aaron Santos
- Probability Methods for Cost Uncertainty Analysis, Paul Garvey
These are foundation texts for the profession of estimating. The continued disregard - ignoring possibly - of these principles has become all to clear. Not just in the sole contributor software development domain,. But all the way to Multi-Billion dolalr programs in defense, space, infrastructure, and other high risk domains.
Which brings me back to a core conjecture - there is no longer any engineering discipline in the software development domain. At least outside the embedded systems like flight controls, process control, telecommunications equipment, and the like. There was a conjecture awhile back that the Computer Science discipline at the university level should be split - software engineering and coding.
Here's a sample of the Software Intensive System paradigm, where the engineering of the systems is a critical success factor. And Yes Virginia, the Discipline of Agile is applied in the Software Intensive Systems world - emphasis on the term DISCIPLINE.