Roving Bands of Programmers

Right now, one of my housemates is watching a National Geographic special on YouTube for one of his classes (yeah, yeah, terrible copyright infringement on the part of his professor). They were talking about small hunter-gatherer groups, which somehow reminded me of small Agile teams.

“Why don’t they band in large groups and decide things in committee?” I snickered.

Then, the narrator mentioned how the groups moved wherever food was available, and I had an amazing thought - what if we had roving bands of programmers?

Imagine this: a team of highly-skilled programmers fend off boredom by changing targets every week or so. Their tight communication and above-average skill, combined with broad experience and a fresh look at things, could resolve some of those long-standing tickets every project has. Most open-source projects tend to have only one main developer, so the arrival of these roguish hackers could be a real energy shot.

Then, without a warning, they disappear into the night, as quickly as they came…