Before there was Agile Software Development there was Extreme Programming – or just XP. XP got all the attention and coverage. Then the term Agile was adopted by Kent Beck, Jim Highsmith, Martin Fowler and others as an umbrella term for XP, Scrum, FDD, Crystal, etc. etc.
But, for a long time many people – outside the inner sanctum of the Agile community – equated Agile with XP, the two terms were inter-changable.
That period came to and end about two years ago, XP stopped getting all the fuss and Agile was something in its own right. (Still all the terms XP, Agile, Scrum, Lean, etc. still confuse the uninitiated.)
But now Scrum is supreme. Scrum is everywhere. Scrum certification seems essential for ones career. Now it seems the terms Scrum and Agile are inter-changable. Scrum is Agile and Agile is Scrum.
Either this means Scrum has won – the Scrum Alliance has done an excellent job of marketing Scrum and it now has the respectability that “extreme” anything could never had.
Or is the start of the end of Scrum.
I expect the Scrum is Agile and Agile is Scrum trend to grow for the next year or two. It will be at least that long before Agile is again a free term. (All the more reason then to adopt Agile Engineering as the new banner.)