IoT & Embedded Technology Blog

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Is Agile the New Norm for Embedded Systems Design?

There are at least four certainties in life: birth, death, taxes and the continued increase of software complexity. As a function of the latter, software development organizations long ago realized that many traditional software development methodologies can become burdensome when applied towards the development goals of today’s projects. The sheer volume and velocity of software content creation has left many organizations searching for more flexible ways to adapt to the changing requirements of their projects. For enterprise/IT software development, the use of iterative development methodologies emerged as a leading way to combat this issue as more development organizations recognized the potential limitations imposed on them by overly rigid, serial development workflows.

Initially gaining traction in the 1990s through the use of Scrum and Extreme programming (and with roots even earlier than that), the use of iterative development has accelerated over the past ten years following the creation and widespread endorsement of the Agile Manifesto. Since that time, a number of Agile derivatives have emerged with different points of emphasis as organizations small and large have looked for ways to replicate the success and engineering efficiency gains reported by early adopters. Although Agile and iterative development has garnered the most widespread adoption within the enterprise/IT domain, the desire to realize its benefits is not limited to this sector and can be successfully extended to areas as specialized as the embedded market.

In fact, almost half of the engineers we surveyed are using some form of Agile or iterative design methodology in their current project. While many of these engineers are still using Agile in combiniation with other more traditional methods, one fact remains clear - Agile had arrived and is being embraced across the embedded systems market.

We will be discussing this topic live today in a Goldfish Bowl at IBM Innovate 2012. If you are attending the conference, please stop by and tell us what you think - the good, the bad, the ugly. Is Agile really a good fit in the embedded market?

Stay tuned for more insight into the adoption and potential advantages of Agile in the embedded systems market when we publish our detailed whitepaper with IBM on the topic.

We hope to see you later today at Innovate!

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