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The way we have developed software over the years has followed a zig-zag path. Early on, we had no prescribed way of working, but we created code. In the 1970s, structured methods became popular, followed by object/component methods from the mid-1980s through 2000. These were technical practices. After that, we adopted Agile methods which focused on human practices or social engineering. Now we are in the Scaling Agile phase, which includes both human and technical practices.

Ending Method Wars: The Successful Utilization of Essence at Munich Re

"Could you please describe how an endeavor in application development progresses over time in a healthy way?" In 2010 Munich Re's application development department was asked this question. But as simple as the question may sound, it is as hard to answer. Even more so in a group of people with different views and experiences. One of the big challenges is the lack of a common language to allow the group to discuss, share and compare their ways of working. ESSENCE, an OMG standard finalized in June 2014, provides definitions and tools to overcome this challenge: it enables efficient discussions about a way of working, the identification of the essential elements that teams should share, the sharing of practices and processes, and the unambiguous documentation of defined ways of working. In this manner ESSENCE was successfully utilized at Munich Re to define a common way of working for all endeavors.

Becoming better, faster, cheaper, and happier

In today's ever more competitive world, boards of directors and executives demand that CIOs and their teams deliver "more with less." Studies show, without any real surprise, that there is no one-size-fits-all method to suit all software initiatives. The SEMAT movement has an answer.

On Common Ground with Essence

Indian Statistical Institute in Kolkata hosted an inauguration of SEMAT India Chapter on June 4, 2014. The inauguration included two events: (1) a SEMAT Executive Committee meeting and (2) Tutorial on "Essence - A Foundation for Software Development Games" by Dr. Mira Kajko-Mattson and Dr. Ivar Jacobson. This interview was conducted during Dr. Jacobson's visit.

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