I am noticing a trend at Agile conferences. Fewer and fewer developers are showing up.

I guess I’ve noticed this for a number of years, but it really hit home recently at at a small American conference when someone commented on the lack of developer focused sessions, to which one of the organizers said: “We would add them except the developers never show up!”

What! I thought. That doesn’t make any sense.

Agile started with developers.
Developers (the ones I used to know) loved Agile.
Agile is software. How can you talk Agile without involving the people who create it?

So developers. Why aren’t we showing up at Agile conferences anymore?

Is it because we’ve been hijacked by Scrum professionals, certification wonks, vendors, and other ‘professionals’ who do everything but deliver software?

Is it because the Agile brand has become so diluted and meaningless that it doesn’t stand up for the things it once did? Like writing kick ass software and making customers happy?

Or is it because there has been no really innovations in Agile over the last 10 years and instead of catching up, everyone is falling backwards reverting to 30 day waterfall sprints under the umbrella of Scrum.

And to everyone else, does this even matter.

Does it matter that the people creating the software are no longer at the table?
Are Agile conferences no longer the best place to talk about innovating software?
And where will the next revolution in software delivery come from?

Where have the developers gone? Do we need them? And will they ever come back.

Update: Further comments can be found here on Hacker News.

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