Embracing Uncertainty

These links are here to support the “Embracing Uncertainty” course, and may also be of interest to anyone learning BDD, involved in Lean or Agile projects, or otherwise dealing with human beings!

A * indicates that the link is external to this blog.


Cynefin is a sensemaking framework. It helps me to make sense of the world by thinking of the kind of situations that I encounter. It might have an outcome that can be predicted, an outcome that can be correlated to its cause in retrospect, or an outcome where no correlation is possible. We often treat all problems the same way in software development. This framework helps me to identify the type of problem being faced, and particularly provides me with ways of embracing uncertainty that sometimes go against our established, certainty-seeking practices.

Wikipedia Entry, “Cynefin”*

Cynefin for Devs

Estimating Complexity

David J. Snowden and Mary E. Boone, “A Leader’s Framework for Decision Making”* (article requires purchase, was $7.50)

The Real Cost of Change

Cognitive Edge’s homepage* – home to more techniques and ideas than I can list

Cynefin Subdomains (all by Dave Snowden)

The Chaotic Domain*

To Give Birth to a Dancing Star* (more on Chaos)

The Complicated Domain*

The Simple Domain*

Deliberate Discovery and Real Options

The principles of Real Options allow us to decide *when* to make a decision effectively, and to pay to extend our options so that a decision doesn’t become a commitment. Deliberate Discovery targets information-gathering, focusing on those places where we have the most ignorance. They work extremely well together, forming two sides of one coin.

Dan North, “Introducing Deliberate Discovery”*

Chris Matts and Olav Maassen, “Real Options Underlie Agility”*

Chris Matts, “Real Options at Agile 2009”*

Chris Matts, Olav Maassen, Chris Geary, “Commitment”* (graphic novel, requires purchase, was €23.95)

The Deliberate Discovery Workshop

Deliberate Discovery – a “sonnet”

4 Responses to Embracing Uncertainty

  1. Pingback: Estimating Complexity | Liz Keogh, lunivore

  2. Pingback: Estimating Complexity

  3. Pingback: 介绍行为驱动开发 – 剑客|关注科技互联网

  4. Pingback: More Agile Testing > Introduction – Test Retreat

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