course, the answer depends.
The agile philosophy advocates lightweight and quot;just-enoughquot; processes and tools. Processes and tools that impede a developer's ability to deliver working software are not agile. While plan-driven processes like the Personal Software Process (PSP) or Team Software Process (TSP) from the Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute (SEI) that mandate manually captured tracking may be promising, they are not agile by this definition. These processes sincerely require using a stopwatch and notebook to capture all development activities which is clearly neither light-weight nor just-enough. Turning developers into data capture devices distracts them from the primary task of delivering high-quality software.
But there are much easier ways to collect this data. Solutions like 6 th Sense Analytics automate the capture of this finely-grained data giving developers the best of both worlds. 6th Sense automatically and unobtrusively collects activity-based data from developer tools and delivers on-demand analytics to individuals and teams through its hosted environment. This delivers insight into the time spent on specific activities and provides a basis for understanding team effort, productivity, and overall project velocity. Developers can still focus on the primary outcome of delivering working code while the data is being collected in the background. This unobtrusive collection certainly fits the criteria of lightweight and is supportive of agile development processes.
Finely-grained tracking not only blends nicely with agile processes, it provides a number of benefits beyond traditional point-based planning. Although agilists traditionally consider story-based planning as fine-grained, Active Time provides much more depth and breath of data–data that provides a powerful level of insight. Although this data would be expensive and cumbersome to collect manually, newly available automated solutions reduce this barrier to adoption.
One of the four tenets of the Agile Manifesto is "Responding to change over following a plan." Active Time's deeper insights offer agile teams the heightened ability to correctly respond to change.
About the Author
Todd Olson is co-founder and CTO of 6 th Sense Analytics. Prior to co-founding 6 th Sense, Todd was Chief Scientist of the Together business unit at Borland Software after TogetherSoft was acquired in 2002. Before the acquisition, Todd was Vice President of Product Development with responsibility for architecting and developing the Togetherreg; product line. Prior to joining TogetherSoft, Olson was Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Cerebellum Software, a leading Internet data integration company that developed solutions to integrate enterprise portal e-business applications and e-commerce projects with corporate data. Todd has a Bachelor of Science degree from Carnegie Mellon University in Electrical and Computer Engineering.