In a previous post (Ways of eating, working, evolving in a bitesize) I wrote that “The way we sustain ourselves is a lean-agile iterative short-cycled feedback loop of ingesting, digesting, and removing waste.”
Expanding on the same topic a few thoughts arise in comparing a waterfall and an agile lifestyle of satisfying primary needs.
In a waterfall world you would have some first months spent deciding what to shop to feed yourself for one entire year, breakfast, lunch, dinners, snacks. You haven’t eaten anything so far and you are going to spend the following months buying these resources in such an amount to cover the needs of a year. You are starving, but now you would spend months cooking all meals at once. You are starving and fainting and it is finally time to taste the first things you started cooking some months ago. You discover you don’t like them, some food is rotten or expired. You could go back and restart from the beginning and make again your shopping list for next year but you are out of budget and have no time. The last day of December is approaching and since you didn’t have a proper meal during the year you are going to eat all at once whatever crappy, moulded, expired meals you have frozen in previous months. You eat it all in once. Now you spend the last few hours of your “marvellous”, foodie year trying to expel everything you just ate so that you can deploy it in the water. Is the last of the year and you look back to make a recap.
You starved most of the year, you worked your ass off, shopping and cooking stuff hoping to eat something decent, you recently discovered you had to eat crap you don’t like, and you have to do it even in huge amount, you are not pooping from a year and you scared as hell to deliver. Happy waterfall year!
Your friend who thinks to know what agile is shares their methodology with you. In the winter they just shop, cook, and eat appetisers. In the following season they always eat the same first course. It doesn’t matter if it is good or bad, it is the same for this quarter. Following their precise and safe schedule, in the third season they eat a second course every day. At every meal: breakfast, lunch, dinner and even breaks. You would expect that in the last quarter of the year they will finally eat desserts all day every day, but it’s now time…