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A quasi-representative time line of Agile-minded events influencing Product Management
Date Type Title Description URL Reference
1-Jan-83 mile marker start The location of Dean Peters' blog post explaining how this list came about, and how you can help nudge it to perfection.
3-Jul-85 influencer Tom Gilb EVO vs Waterfall Tom Gilb writes: "... the "waterfall model" may be unrealistic, and dangerous to the primary objectives of any software project. The alternative model, which I choose to call "evolutionary delivery" is not widely taught or practiced yet."
16-Sep-85 mile marker Apple fires Steve Jobs Walter Isaacsons' biography recalls "Steve didn't at that age know much about running companies. Apple had failed with Lisa, had failed with the Apple 3. The Apple 2 was near end of life, the company needed cash flow to fund development of the Macintosh."
20-Nov-85 mile marker Windows 1.0 Deployed via 2 floppy disk drives requiring 192 KB of RAM.
1-Jan-86 influencer Takeuchi & Nonaka on The New New Product Development Game Published in the Jan-Feb Harvard Business Review 64, no. 1, Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka help pour the foundations for 'Scrum' as they describe a need to shift the approach to managing new product development towards one that places a greater emphasis on speed and flexibility. This in contrast to what the article states as "The traditional sequential or "relay race" approach to product development-exemplified by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's phased program planning (PPP) system may conflict with the goals of maximum speed and flexibility. Instead, a holistic or "rugby" approach-where a team tries to go the distance as a unit, passing the ball back and forth-may better serve today's competitive requirements."
17-Apr-88 influencer OOSA Shlaer-Mellor Born out of the Shlaer-Mellor method, Object-oriented analysis and design (OOAD) was a popular technical approach in the 1980s and '90s for analyzing and designing an application, system, or business by applying object-oriented programming, as well as using visual modeling throughout the development life cycles to foster better stakeholder communication and product quality.
5-May-88 influencer The Design of Everyday Things Originally published in 1988 under the title 'The Psychology of Everyday Things', 'The Design of Everyday Things' is a best-selling book by cognitive scientist and usability engineer Donald Norman about how design serves as the communication between object and user, and how to optimize that conduit of communication in order to make the experience of using the object pleasurable.
1-Jan-91 influencer Scrum Conceived Schwaber, K., & Sutherland, J. (1991). The Scrum Guide The Definitive Guide to Scrum: The Rules of the Game
14-Feb-91 influencer Peter Rowe on Design Thinking Design Thinking refers to the cognitive, strategic and practical processes by which design concepts (proposals for new products, buildings, machines, etc.) are developed by designers and/or design teams. Many of the key concepts and aspects of design thinking have been identified through studies, across different design domains, of design cognition and design activity in both laboratory and natural contexts.
1-Jan-93 influencer Pragmatic Marketing Founded Pragmatic Marketing helps companies build and marketing products people actually buy. It is the industry standard in technology product management, product marketing, training and education. Since 1993, the market-driven Pragmatic Marketing Framework has been implemented, tested and proven by thousands of technology companies and over 125,000 product professionals.
27-Jul-93 mile marker Windows NT 3.1 Windows NT (New Technology) was a complete, 32-bit operating system that retained a desktop environment familiar to Windows 3.1 users that did not rely on the DOS operating system; having its origin as a rewrite of the OS/2 operating system, which Microsoft had co-developed with IBM in the 1980s.
1-Jan-95 influencer Scrum Established Schwaber & Sutherland publish 'The Scrum Guide The Definitive Guide to Scrum: The Rules of the Game.'
26-Apr-96 influencer A.Cockburn on the Basic Use Case Template Alistair Cockburn published a basic use case template based on his "Structuring Use Cases with Goals." The template was made available for use via the Humans and Technology HaT technical report 96.03a. It defined the 'promise of a conversation' structure that drives modern day product backlog items in including a goal stated as a short active verb, followed by a more verbose goal description, followed by acceptance criteria. Case Template %28Cockburn%29.pdf
19-Nov-96 mile marker Microsoft Office '97 Clippy, the Jar Jar Binks of office assistants, proving the need for early feedback via experimentation over up-front planning.
20-Jun-97 influencer A List Apart Launched Originally started as a newsletter by Jeffrey Zeldman and Brian Platz A List Apart is a webzine that explores the design, development, and meaning of web content, with a special focus on web standards and best practices.
9-Jul-97 mile marker Steve Jobs Returns to Apple Return of Steve Jobs. On July 9, 1997, Gil Amelio was ousted as CEO of Apple by the board of directors. Jobs stepped in as the interim CEO to begin a critical restructuring of the company's product line. He would eventually become CEO and served in that position until August 2011.
1-Jan-98 influencer RUP Standing between Waterfall and Agile, the Rational Unified Process (a.k.a. RUP) defines an interative process whose goal is to ensure the production of highly reliable software that meets the need of end users while within the constraints of a highly predictable schedule and budget.
26-Aug-98 influencer Bugzilla released Bugzilla is a Web-based general-purpose bug tracker and testing tool originally developed and used by the Mozilla project, and licensed under the Mozilla Public License. Released as open-source software by Netscape Communications in 1998, it has been adopted by a variety of organizations for use as a bug tracking system for both free and open-source software and proprietary projects and products.
1-May-99 influencer eXtreme Programming One of the earliest of Agile software practices that advocated frequent "releases" in short development cycles intended to improve productivity and introduce frequent feedback checkpoints at which evolving customer requirements can be adopted.
15-Jun-01 influencer Agile Manifesto Individuals and interactions over processes and tools. Working software over comprehensive documentation. Customer collaboration over contract negotiation. Responding to change over following a plan.
24-Aug-01 mile marker Windows XP Windows XP is a personal computer operating system produced by Microsoft built on the Windows NT kernel which was intended specifically for mainstream consumer use.
1-Jan-02 influencer Scrum Alliance Founded in 2001, we're the largest, most established and influential professional membership and certification organization in the Agile community. Our nonprofit association has certified more than 750,000 practitioners worldwide.
14-Feb-02 influencer JIRA launched Jira (/'dgi:ra/ JEE-ra) is a proprietary issue tracking product developed by Atlassian which allows bug tracking and agile project management. The product name is a truncation of Gojira, the Japanese word for Godzilla, which is a reference to a competitor, Bugzilla. In terms of product management, the Jira has defined how user stories are communicated and managed with Scrum teams.
18-May-03 influencer Lean Software by M&T Poppendieck The term lean software development originated in a book by the same name, written by Mary Poppendieck and Tom Poppendieck. The book restates traditional lean principles, as well as a set of 22 tools and compares the tools to corresponding agile practices.
1-Jan-05 influencer Large Scale Scrum (LeSS) Large-Scale Scrum (LeSS) is an application the principles, purpose, elements, and elegance of Scrum in a large-scale context, as simply as possible.
14-Jun-05 influencer Ken Norton on How to Hire a PM The classic essay on the role of product management, that not only provided useful instruction on how to hire a product manager, but served to help define the role of Product Management in general.
29-Jun-07 mile marker iPhone Introduced The iPhone is released as the first smartphone model designed and marketed by Apple Inc. After years of rumors and speculation, it was officially announced on January 9, 2007, and was later released in the United States on June 29, 2007.
28-Jul-07 influencer Lean Kanban David Anderson & Andy Carmichael first publish 'Essential Kanban Condensed.'
4-Feb-08 mile marker Windows Server'08 Windows Server 2008, released on February 27, 2008, was originally known as Windows Server Codename "Longhorn". Windows Server 2008 builds on the technological and security advances first introduced with Windows Vista, and is significantly more modular than its predecessor, Windows Server 2003.
14-Feb-08 influencer UserVoice Launched UserVoice, Inc. develops product feedback management software for businesses. It offers software tools for collecting, analyzing, and acting on large quantities of feedback; communication tools that enable users to update their users automatically, run beta tests, and drive new feature adoption; and feedback collection solution that enables users to capture actionable product feedback.
22-Sep-08 influencer Android SDK 1.0 Android is a mobile operating system developed by Google. It is based on a modified version of the Linux kernel and other open source software, and is designed primarily for touchscreen mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.
22-Oct-09 mile marker Windows 7 Windows 7 was primarily intended to be an incremental upgrade to Microsoft Windows, intended to address Windows Vista's poor critical reception while maintaining hardware and software compatibility.
28-Sep-10 influencer Scrumban Ajay Reddy publishes "The Scrumban [R]Evolution: Getting the Most Out of Agile, Scrum, and Lean Kanban (Agile Software Development Series) 1st Edition."
13-Sep-11 influencer The Lean Startup Eric Ries publishes "The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses"
5-Oct-11 mile marker Steve Jobs passes Jobs died at his Palo Alto, California, home around 3 p.m. (PDT) on October 5, 2011, due to complications from a relapse of his previously treated islet-cell pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor, which resulted in a respiratory arrest.
21-Dec-11 influencer SAFe The Scaled Agile Framework (abbreviated as SAFe), is a set of organization and workflow patterns intended to guide enterprises in scaling lean and agile practices.
1-Oct-12 influencer Spotify Model Henrik Kniberg & Anders Ivarsson publish "Scaling Agile @ Spotify with Tribes, Squads, Chapters & Guilds (and Feature Flags)."
18-Oct-12 mile marker Windows 8 Windows 8 introduced major changes to the operating system's platform and user interface to improve its user experience on tablets, where Windows was now competing with mobile operating systems, including Android and iOS.
31-Jan-13 influencer #NoEstimates Movement Woody Zuill posts 'Can we code without estimates?' and Neil Killick posts on his blog "#NoEstimates Part 1 - Doing Scrum Without Estimates" ... and with it the hashtag that launched at least 1,000 Tweet fights from proponents and opponents alike.
1-Apr-13 influencer Aha! established Aha! is founded in 2013 by Silicon Valley veterans and product management experts Brian de Haaff and Dr. Chris Waters.
18-Jul-14 influencer Google Ventures funds FullStory Fullstory serves product management in the session replay space by capturing every click, keypress, page transition and more - automatically indexed and easily accessible to any team with a stake in the customer's success. More recently, it provides insights through intelligently surfacing key moments of potential user frustration such as dead links, errors, and rage clicks.
4-Nov-14 influencer launches Founded in 2013, a year later Pendo launches its first Product Engagement Platform, that once implemented, provides product teams the ability to gain customer and behavioral insights without having to leverage additional development resources.
15-Apr-15 influencer Alistair Cockburn registers the domain for his work "The Heart of Agile", an approach to Agile that amplifies its culture by simplifying it into just four imperatives: Collaborate. Deliver. Reflect. Improve.
29-Jul-15 mile marker Windows 10 Windows 10 is an operating system developed by Microsoft. Microsoft described Windows 10 as an "operating system as a service" that would receive ongoing updates to its features and functionality, augmented with the ability for enterprise environments to receive non-critical updates at a slower pace, or use long-term support milestones that will only receive critical updates, such as security patches, over their five-year lifespan of mainstream support.
1-Oct-15 influencer established Founded by individuals experienced in the area of feature flagging and experimentation, Split is launched, providing product and development with both tools and dashboards to support controlled rollouts of new features to the right audience while protecting customers from failure.
13-May-16 influencer Modern Agile announced Modern Agile is a community for people interested in uncovering better ways of getting awesome results. It leverages wisdom from many industries, is principle driven and framework free.
16-Nov-16 influencer John Cutler on Feature Factory A short but seminal blog post, '12 Signs You're Working in a Feature Factory' has generated no small amount of introspection and conversations on what product management is, and where it should be going.
2-Jun-18 influencer ProductCraft on the #ProductStack The Product Stack - a comprehensive visualization of the categories of tools and specific vendors that serve the modern product manager. When deployed together, these become a force-multiplier on performance for products and their owners alike
10-Jul-18 mile marker Windows SubSystem for Linux Released The Windows Subsystem for Linux lets developers run GNU/Linux environment -- including most command-line tools, utilities, and applications -- directly on Windows, unmodified, without the overhead of a virtual machine.
23-Oct-18 influencer The Buld Trap, Melissa Perri Melissa Perri announced on Twitter that after two years of writing, her book "Escaping the Build Trap: How Effective Product Management Creates Real Value" is available on Amazon. In this book she talks about defining the role of product managers as deliverer of outcome rather than output by equipping them with strategies that that promote good decision making and with processes for determining what product to build, through experimentation and optimization."
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deanpeters commented Dec 27, 2018

I created this quasi-representative list of Agile-centric influencers on Product Management for two reasons: First to create a visual time line that I've posted over on my blog at, but also as the first part of a three-part series, the last post of which will be my wild-n-crazy product management predictions for 2019.

This first open iteration of this quasi-representative list shared here on Gist contains about 3 dozen or so Agile-minded ‘influencer’ events, articles, ideas, or products that contributed in some fashion to the evolution of product management over the past 33 years.

To provide some additional context there is also included about a dozen or so ‘mile marker’ events; hopefully, they add continuity to the time line.

Feel free to contribute to this list. There’s only a couple of ground rules, don’t be spammy nor shamelessly self-promotional about your entry. Don’t take it and claim it as your own.

Oh, and please keep in mind that this quasi-representative list isn’t supposed to be as much of a comprehensive history of Agile, but rather to surface and discuss Agile influences on how Product Management is practiced in 2019.

Here's the sharable bitly link to the list:

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