An experiment in the power of perspective

sAs I’m completing my book the thought that keeps coming back to me is that when you look at things the right way they get a lot easier. And that much of what’s hard about Agile is that people aren’t looking at it the right way.  I don’t mean the “being of Agile” which I believe is a red herring.  Let’s run a little experiment. Please explain the following:

5+2= 7

14+13=27

14+15=31

For those of you who know bases you’ll figure out this is addition in base 8.

Now, show this to someone who can do addition but doesn’t know bases. See how long it takes them to figure it out. I would guess many won’t.

But what if you had an easy way to explain bases and base addition (I do but it’s not important to the point of this post so I won’t bother here). Understanding bases makes a certain problem easy that is impenetrable when you don’t have that insight.

I believe we have this problem in Agile. People are looking at examples of what to do (practices) instead of the equivalent of bases in Agile. I’m not saying it’d be easy (e.g., add 142372341539243 and 524234714234 🙂 ) but it’d be easier. 🙂

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