What is Extreme Manufacturing

Extreme Manufacturing Explained by Peter Stevens, extracted and adapted from http://www.scrum-breakfast.com/2013/06/extreme-manufacturing-explained.html, 3 June 2013.

Extreme Manufacturing: the approach by Joe Justice to iterate weekly with tangible products, just like Scrum in Software.

In 2008, Joe Justice responded to a challenge from the X-Prize competition to create a road-legal 100mpg automobile. Despite having little time, hardly any budget, competition from over 100 well-funded competitors from companies and universities around the world, and changing requirements from the awards committee, his company’s WIKISPEED entry placed 10th in the Mainstream class.

Extreme Manufacturing on the Wikispeed CarJoe not only created a great car, he also developed an Agile approach to creating physical products.

As a software developer, Joe was an “Agile native.” He had only worked with methods like Scrum and Extreme Programming, so his engineering practices drew heavily on his software experience. Today, WIKISPEED is selling prototypes, and the WIKISPEED approach to manufacturing is turning heads worldwide at companies like Boeing and John Deere. “Our technology is more sophisticated than yours, but your culture is light-years ahead of ours!”

Joe calls his approach “Extreme Manufacturing” (referred as XM from now).

XM emphasizes the ability to create products quickly and integrate changes rapidly into existing products. XM is collection of principles and patterns to help you create and adapt products quickly.

The principles of Extreme Manufacturing are the following:

  1. Optimize for change
  2. Object-Oriented, Modular Architecture
  3. Test Driven Development (Red, Green, Refactor)
  4. Contract-First Design
  5. Iterate the Design
  6. Agile Hardware Design Patterns
  7. Continuous Integration Development
  8. Continuously Deployed Development
  9. Scaling Patterns
  10. Partner Patterns

These principles and patterns do not represent the final wisdom on Agile manufacturing, but rather a work-in-progress, on the discovery of better ways to manufacture things.