Software development is a complete science in and of itself. While it may seem overly complex to someone who doesn’t possess the skills, it also flows like poetry from skilled developers who have the capability to create powerful and highly useful products and services through code.
Some people often have the misconception that developers can just jump into the project at a moment’s notice and create such products.
That couldn’t be further from the truth. Effective software development can only be achieved through the implementation of a carefully crafted process.
The developer needs to have clarity on the needs of the project, the tech stack that's to be used, the development framework, in addition to many different factors. Only then does it become possible for them to create products and services that have the potential to change lives.
What is Extreme Programming (XP) Methodology?
To understand what is Extreme Programming methodology, we first need to form an understanding of agile software development.
This is an approach to software development that prioritizes incremental delivery, collaboration between the team, continual planning in order to keep the process lean.
The idea with agile development is to create minimum viable products that go through several iterations before being finalized instead of trying to deliver everything at once at the very end of the project.
Extreme Programming is a framework of agile development. It is concerned with the production of higher quality software as well as a higher quality of life for the development team.
It's the most specific of agile frameworks that's concerned with precise engineering practices for development.
An important aspect of XP methodology is to improve software responsiveness in response to changing customer requirements.
It prioritizes frequent releases in short development cycles to improve productivity and add checkpoints where new customer requirements can be introduced.
How to use XP Methodology in your software development
The Extreme Programming methodology isn't going to work for all development teams but it has the potential of delivering incredible value for teams that are the perfect fit for it.
Extreme Programming can work very well for projects that require a change in functionality every few months or have constantly changing requirements.
It's a particularly effective approach when dealing with customers who aren't quite sure what they want their custom software system to do. XP is also a great way to mitigate project risk when dealing with very tight deadlines.
It can be worth giving Extreme Programming a shot in your software development if continuous development and collaboration is a serious business need.
Since this development model is highly adaptable, it requires ongoing feedback and incentivizes developers to work together to ensure a healthy product release, thereby also increasing productivity for the teams.
Four practices of Extreme Programming
In order to achieve the intended objectives with XP, these four practices should be followed: Coding, Testing, Listening and Designing. They're split as such because if you don't code, you haven't done anything.
You test because if you don't test, you don't know when you're done coding. It's important to listen because if you don't, you can't find out what to code or what to test.
Design is important because that way, you can keep coding, testing, and listening indefinitely.
- Save time and resources
Any project that can be delivered before deadline and under budget is far more preferable than projects that incur cost overruns and miss deadlines.
XP provides development teams with a great opportunity to reduce project costs and push out deliverables in a timely manner.
- Add simplicity to the project
Projects don't necessarily need to be complex. Developers that utilize the XP methodology create simple code that can be improved at any moment.
This, in turn, helps speed up the development process. It also makes it easier for new resources to hit the ground running as there’s not a significant learning curve.
- Flexibility to make changes
Since the XP methodology revolves around flexibility, it makes it possible to quickly add new functionality or remove functionality from the product.
Developers can listen to the feedback provided and make any changes that may be required by the customer.
- Not highly focused on design
Some developers are of the view that the Extreme Programming methodology focuses too much on the code and not enough on the design.
As developers will tell you, great design is essential to create a great software product. A great design can also be one of the USPs of the product.
- Code quality assurance not measured
Developers also consider not measuring code quality assurance as one of the disadvantages of the XP methodology. It's not something that happens for the vast majority of projects that are undertaken with XP, but in some cases it may cause defects in the initial code.
- Not suitable for remote teams
Extreme Programming is better suited to development teams that work and collaborate together. That’s one of the core reasons why it supports such agile development.
Having your development team spread across different regions would minimize the beneficial impact of using XP for software development.
Is a developer that uses Extreme Programming Methodology worth it?
Whether or not a developer who uses Extreme Programming methodology is worth it depends upon what your requirements are for the project being done. As explained above, there are specific instances in which XP can prove to be highly useful.
Just because it facilitates greater collaboration and more agile development doesn’t mean that it’s going to be the perfect fit for all software development work.
Companies that view continuous development as a business need should consider the XP methodology as it has the potential to deliver incredible value for their projects.
The benefits only compound once there’s clarity that the project being done is indeed a good fit for XP. The speed at which the development work will proceed will ensure that there are no costly delays and that the product releases can take place as per schedule.
There’s also the cost reduction factor, it can enable businesses to reduce the amount of resources that they spend on a project. Similarly, it also adds a layer of simplicity to the project. This only goes to improve the overall quality of the work being done.
So before working with a developer that uses the Extreme Programming methodology, it would be best to discuss the project in great detail with them.
This will enable them to understand what the needs for the project are and whether XP is even going to be a good fit for it or not.
They will also be able to make recommendations in this regard. If XP isn’t found to be a good fit for your project, the developer that you work with will be able to guide you towards an alternative agile development framework that would be better suited to the kind of work that you’re looking for.
Our methodology at Zibtek
At Zibtek, we know a thing or two about Extreme Programming. Our team of expert developers are highly skilled at leveraging the XP methodology to deliver powerful custom software solutions for our clients.
We’re one of the world’s leading software development companies, having worked with Fortune 500 companies and startups alike in a variety of industries across the globe. Zibtek is based in Salt Lake City, Utah and also manages a global talent pool of skilled developers from within its base in the United States.
For the vast majority of our projects, our managers use an agile methodology to drive the results that our clients are looking for. The team works with incredible efficiency to collaboratively solve problems.
This approach allows for measured adaptation to change as well as incorporate new ideas. We keep clients engaged in every step of the process so that you know exactly what's going on with your project and can provide consistent feedback on any changes that may need to be made.
We will work with you through launch and help get you set up with everything from the servers to data storage and deployment. If your custom software solution requires deployment to an app store, we can also help you out with that.
Even before you hire Zibtek, our associates can provide you with their valuable feedback on your project, budget, and plan. They will work with you to refine your ideas and help set up a responsible budget for that work that's to be done.
Your core business objectives will remain at the heart of everything that we do for your project in order to make sure that the investment that you pour in your custom software project delivers the returns that you expect.
If you’re interested in utilizing the Extreme Programming methodology for a custom software project, contact us today for a free consultation. Our team of expert advisors will be happy to assist you.
They will understand your unique business needs and guide you on the various development framework options that you should consider even if XP isn’t a good fit for you.