Quests

Quests

"Quests" are on-the-job experiments, self-assessments, peer-reviews, course experiences or other activities intended to help a person better apply a particular agile developer skill set. Anyone who is interested may embark on as many quests as time and interest permit.

Quest Experience Reports

Participants in quests are asked to record their experience here in the Agile Skills Project, for the following reasons:

• so others can repeat and independently verify the experiments in the quest
• 
to hear what you found valuable (what you learned) in the quest, and whether you'd recommend it for others trying to learn the same things
• to gain peer feedback and thus learn even more from your own experience
• to be recognized by the community for becoming a more skilled Agile team member

Success at a progression of increasingly difficult quests may suggest some level of proficiency, or it may not--so the Agile Skills Project will not endorse any use of a quest log for certification or employee review purposes.  The Project will, however, attempt to map quest experiences, course materials, and certifications back to items in the Skills Inventory.  This turns out to be a fitting inversion of control--since we, as a community, define the Inventory, we have the control to define the value of industrial certifications.  This does not put us at odds with certifying authorities, nor does it make us beholden to them.  It allows us to challenge the status quo, to define our own standards, and to work for continuous improvement, while sharing the data from which our conclusions have been made.

  At some point we imagine we'll build an automated system that logs quest experience reports, but for now, you can do so on the wiki by creating a Member page with sub-pages for every quest.  We've created templates for quests and for quest experiences.

Creating Quests  

Anything that helped you improve your Agile Developer Skills is fair game as a quest--on-the-job experimentation, reading a book, participating in an e-mail group, course work, showing up or presenting at local agile user group meetings or conferences, writing, collaborating with practitioners outside of your own company, consulting, training, etc.  The main thing to note is that quests are not additive.  The Agile Skills Project will make no attempt to weight quests, because context is so important to how we learn.  We imagine that future and current employers will be interested in knowing where someone falls along the Agile Skill Level spectrum, but we only provide a benchmark from which to base those judgments, not the judgments themselves.
  If you experimented with the intention of improving your Agile Developer Skills, and it didn't turn out, or it did, please log it here.  If you can't find the quest already described in the system, add it by creating a new page under the Quests heading, and fill in the Quest template.

Peer Reviews of Quests

One of the most powerful side-effects of the Quest system is that we're building an inventory of anecdotes about what practices help us become more effective Agile team members.  We hope that researchers, newcomers, and practitioners will draw well-informed opinions about the correlation between practice and results.

Embarking on Quests

Preparation is key to learning.  Please review and comment on at least 3 other experience reports before starting out on your quest.  When you're done with the quest, log in to this site, and fill in the Quest Experience Report by adding a new page under the appropriate quest.