Category Archives: Uncategorized

Fun with sticky scrolling

For the past several weeks I’ve had the great fortune to help contribute to our new archival finding aid interface, based on the Stanford ArcLight project. My coworker Sean Aery, is a contributor to that project as well as being the lead developer for Duke University Libraries’ implementation.

The new site is set to launch next week (July 1st) and we are all very excited about it. You can read a teaser post about it written by the product owner, Noah Huffman.

Last week we were trying to work out a thorny issue with the overall interface. There was a feature request from the product owner team to make a section of the navigation ‘sticky’ while allowing other parts of the interface to scroll normally. We have a similar setup for viewing results in our catalog, but that was implemented in an ‘older’ way using extra markup and javascript. Support for position:sticky; across the major browsers is now at point that we could try implementing this feature in a much more simple way, so that’s what we did!

Video of scrolling behavior (with scroll bars showing)

Everything was working great with our implementation, except I really wanted to figure out a way to hide the scroll bars when they weren’t being used — but the most reliable way to do so seemed to involve some flavor of third-party javascript library and I didn’t want to go down that road. In chatting with Sean about it over Slack, he wasn’t seeing the scroll bar problems that I was. I was completely flummoxed! Our development environments are more or less identical. He’s running on a newer version of MacOS than me, but our browser versions are the same. I just couldn’t wrap my head around why I was seeing different behavior with the scroll bars.

However, some googling revealed that there was a setting in macOS for the scroll bars which I was completely unfamiliar with:

screenshot of scrollbar settings
Screenshot of the scroll bar settings options in macOS

I didn’t recall having ever changed that in the past, so I checked with Sean and his was set the same as mine. This felt like the right track, but I still couldn’t imagine what was going on.

Sean also mentioned he was using a trackpad to browse, whereas I have an external mouse attached to my machine. On a whim I tried unhooking the mouse and restarting my computer — and sure enough, that did the trick!

 

See the Pen
MWKvmbV
by Michael Daul (@mikedaul)
on CodePen.

Set the zoom level of the embedded view above to 0.5x to play with the scrolling

 

So the lesson of this story is… if you ever encounter unexpected behavior with scroll bars while doing development work on your Mac, make sure to check your settings and/or account for your use of an external mouse!

Casting a Critical Eye on the Hayti-Elizabeth Street Renewal Area Maps

In 2019, one of the digital collections we made available to the public was a small set of architectural maps and plans titled the ‘Hayti-Elizabeth Street Renewal Area’. The short description of the maps indicates they ‘depict existing and proposed structures and modifications to the Hayti neighborhood in Durham, NC.’ Sounds pretty benign, right? Perhaps even kind of hopeful, given the word ‘renewal’?

Hayti-Elizabeth Street Renewal Area, Existing Land Use Map

Nope. This anodyne description does not tell the story of the harm caused by the Durham Urban Renewal project of the 1960s and 1970s. The Durham Redevelopment Commission intended to eliminate ‘urban blight’ via this project, which ultimately resulted in the destruction of more than 4,000 households and 500 businesses in predominantly African American areas of the city. The Hayti District, once a flourishing and self-sufficient neighborhood filled with Black-owned businesses, was largely demolished, divided, and effectively severed from what is now downtown Durham by the construction of NC Highway 147. 

Bull City 150, a “public history, geography and community engagement project” based here at Duke University, hosts a suite of excellent multi-media public history exhibitions about housing inequality in Durham on its website. One of these is Dismantling Hayti, which focuses in particular on the effects of urban renewal on the neighborhood and the city.

Dismantling Hayti, Bull City 150

But this story of so-called urban renewal is not just about Durham – it’s about the United States as a whole. From the 1950s to the 1980s, municipalities across the country demolished roughly 7.5 million dwelling units, with a vastly disproportionate impact on Black and low-income neighborhoods, in the name of revitalization. Bulldozing for highway corridors was frequently a part of urban renewal projects, happening in San Francisco, Memphis, Boston, Atlanta, Syracuse, Baltimore, everywhere in the country – the list goes on and on. And it includes Saint Paul, Minnesota, the city where, mourning and protesting the killing of yet another Black person at the hands of a white police officer, thousands of people occupied Interstate 94 in recent weeks, marching from the state capitol to Minneapolis, over a highway that was once the African American neighborhood of Rondo.  

Urban renewal projects led to what social psychiatrist Dr. Mindy Fulilove refers to as root shock – “a traumatic stress reaction related to the destruction of one’s emotional ecosystem”. This is but one thread in the fabric of white supremacy out of which our country was woven, among other twentieth century practices of redlining, discriminatory mortgage lending practices, denial of access to unemployment benefits, and rampant Jim Crow laws, which are still causing harm today. This is why it is important to interrogate the historical context of resources like the Hayti-Elizabeth Street Renewal Area maps – we should all accept the invitation extended on the Bull City 150 website to Durhamites to “reckon with the racial and economic injustices of the past 150 years and commit to building a more equitable future”.

Labor in the Time of Coronavirus

The Coronavirus pandemic has me thinking about labor–as a concept, a social process, a political constituency, and the driving force of our economy–in a way that I haven’t in my lifetime. It’s become alarmingly clear (as if it wasn’t before) that we all need food, supplies, and services to survive past next week, and that there are real human beings out there working to produce and deliver these things. No amount of entrepreneurship, innovation, or financial sleight of hand will help us through the coming months if people are not working to provide the basic requirements for life as we know it.

This blog post draws from  images in our digitized library collections to pay tribute to all of the essential workers who are keeping us afloat during these challenging times. As I browsed these photographs and mused on our current situation, a few important and oft-overlooked questions came to mind.

Who grows our food? Where does it come from and how is it processed? How does it get to us?

Bell pepper pickers, 1984 June. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.
Prisoners at the county farm killing hogs, 1983 Mar. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.
Worker atop rail car loading corn from storage tanks, 1991 Sept. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.
Manuel Molina, mushroom farm worker, Kennett Square, PA 1981. Frank Espada Photographs.

What kind of physical environment do we work in and how does that affect us?

Maids in a room of the Stephen Decatur Hotel shortly before it was torn down, 1970. Paul Kwilecki Photographs
Worker in pit preparing to weld. Southeastern Minerals Co. Bainbridge, 1991 Aug. Paul Kwilecki Photographs
Loggers in the woods near Attapulgus, 1978 Feb. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.

How do we interact with machines and technology in our work? Can our labor be automated or performed remotely?

Worker signaling for more logs. Elberta Crate and Box. Co. Bainbridge, 1991 Sept. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.
Worker, Williamson-Dickie plant. Bainbridge, 1991 Sept. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.
Machine operator watching computer controlled lathe, 1991 July. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.
Worker at her machine. Elberta Crate and Box Co. Bainbridge, 1981 Nov. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.

What equipment and clothing do we need to work safely and productively?

Cotton gin worker wearing safety glass and ear plugs for noise protection. Decatur Gin Co., 1991 Sept. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.
Worker operating bagging machine. Flint River Mills. Bainbridge, 1991 July. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.
Worker at State Dock, 1992 July. Paul Kwilecki Photographs.

Are we paid fairly for our work? How do relative wages for different types of work reflect what is valued in our society?

No known title. William Gedney Photographs.

How we think about and respond to these questions will inform how we navigate the aftermath of this ongoing crisis and whether or not we thrive into the future. As we celebrate International Workers’ Day on May 1 and beyond, I hope everyone will take some time to think about what labor means to them and to our society as a whole.

DUCC, TUCC, and the origins of digital computing in North Carolina

The feature image is”Triangle University Computation Center IBM System/370 Hardware Configuration,” from Network Management Survey, published in 1974.

The Cut Study and DUCC

The Fall semester of 1958 saw deep concern among the Duke student body with a pressing issue – cutting class. The Undergraduate Faculty Council Committee had taken up a study of class attendance, and planned to issue recommendations for policies on “absence limitations.” Its chair was John Jay Gergen, who had been on the faculty at Duke more than 20 years at that point, serving most of them as head of the Mathematics Department. In September, the Chronicle urged him to “make a sincere effort to show the students the seriousness of the situation and to explain their findings.” They warned him not to “announce suddenly a new policy to the students,” which would be a form of “[t]actless communication” that might “breed discontent among the students.” By all indications, Gergen ignored them.

While the “Cut Study” may have seemed enormously consequential to the students at the time, Gergen was leading a different effort that would have far more lasting impact at Duke. By at least one account, he was a large and imposing man, which could also describe his influence on campus. He channeled some of that influence into his work as the senior faculty member and administrator who oversaw the effort to bring digital computing to the university. While Gergen acted mainly in an administrative role, it was a protege of his who authored the grants that brought in the funding, and did the legwork on setting up an operational computing center.

Continue reading DUCC, TUCC, and the origins of digital computing in North Carolina

Library Crisis: The Late Bronze Age Collapse of 1177 BC and the Coronavirus of 2020 AD

View of Hattusa

 

Late 13th century BC rock relief carving at the Yazılıkaya sanctuary

Located amongst agricultural fields, grazing cattle and goats, the quiet town of Boğazkale watches time pass.  It is a small town in the Black Sea region of Turkey, only about 1300 people live here.  You are more likely to encounter a tractor than a car and you get the sense that everyone knows everyone else.  If you walk about half a kilometer outside of this sleepy community, you will encounter the equally serene-looking archaeological site of Hattusa.  Although now abandoned, at its peak in the 14th century BC, Hattusa was a capital and home to nearly 50,000 Hittites.

 

Cuneiform tablet

Much of what is known about the Hittites is drawn from their own writings, or from later copies of their writings.  The Hittites have been described by some sources as warlike; they utilized chariots and steadily increased their kingdom.  They worked iron and had a fair amount of courtly intrigue.  Perhaps most importantly, the Hittites were literate, employing an Indo-European language with an Akkadian script.

Around 1177 BC, Hattusa fell as one of many victims of the Late Bronze Age Collapse.  There is archaeological evidence for extensive burning at the site and the written records at Hattusa stop.  It appears as though the site was gradually abandoned over time and never successfully reoccupied.  That turned out to be a stroke of luck because a German archaeological dig in the early 20th century (re)discovered the so-called Bogazköy Archive, which was determined initially to be a largely intact royal archive.  Thanks to more research and the decipherment of the Hittite language in 1915, it seems more likely that this assemblage of 30,000 cuneiform tablets is actually a library.  This is based largely on the argument that some of the tablets have colophons that provide an order hierarchy for multi-part works and the collection includes basic descriptive inventory lists of the tablets, instituting an early type of collection management.

The abandonment of Hattusa and its library makes one wonder:  What would it have been like for the scribes or library keepers to make the decision to leave the collection?  What would they have done to get the collection ready for their absence?  What would have the last person who left the collection felt like upon leaving?  Did they believe they would return?

It’s impossible to answer such questions, since we have no surviving first-person accounts from this event.  However, we can consider a current analogy and while it’s not a perfect correspondence, it may provide some emotional experiential equivalence.

With the advent of the 2019-2020 coronavirus pandemic, many universities and cultural heritage institutions were faced with the difficult challenge of abiding by official orders, trying to keep their faculty and staff safe and healthy, and attempting to continue with business as usual.  At Duke University Libraries, the decision-making process began publicly at the beginning of March 2020.  It started with one email, a few days’ pause, and then another email and the information about how the Libraries would ultimately face the pandemic trickled in.  Eventually, it became one or more emails everyday with updates.  The Libraries scaled back opening times and access to staff and eventually made the onerous decision to close the Libraries on March 20, 2020.

The last week that the Libraries were open, staff were encouraged to begin setting up to work from home and to come up with ideas of what work could be done remotely.  Colleagues began making the transition from being in the Library to being at home.  In the Digital Production Center (DPC), our small workgroup of 4 individuals slowly began to dwindle as one-by-one co-workers began working from home.

One of the last items digitized by the DPC prior to its March 20 closure

So, what did the DPC do to get ready for the Libraries’ closure?  Our primary remit as a department is to produce digital surrogates of Duke’s collection items both for online use and for library patrons.  So, we worked hard to get items digitized for online class use, patrons and online collections.  It was a race against time because we knew that whatever we didn’t have imaged by Friday at 5pm would have to wait.  And for online courses that were counting on the material, waiting wasn’t an option.  Normally, the DPC holds materials that we are working with in our vault.  However, with the Library closing down, those items needed to be secured in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library.  We took several carts full of materials back for safe keeping, with the idea that we would retrieve them when the Libraries reopen.

As the number of staff physically onsite in the Library began to diminish, I started saying goodbye to more people than hello.  With every farewell, there was uncertainty:  When will we see each other again?  The Library became a truly quiet place.  Gone were the patrons and students, replaced by empty seats and a deafening silence.  Colleagues that I would normally pass in the Library several times a week suddenly began showing up on my computer screen for Zoom meetings.

Perkins Library on March 20, 2020
Last day at the DPC

On the final day that the Libraries were open to staff, the last batch of materials was returned to the Rubenstein Library for safekeeping and the Libraries themselves had transformed into very different, very empty spaces.  While the circumstances are certainly not the same as they were for the Hittites, there was a sense of uncertainty.  I’d like to believe that I was more assured of my return to the Library than that last scribe or keeper.

Spring blossoms on a eerily empty Duke University campus

As I left Perkins Library, I paused in the doorway and looked back over my shoulder.  I didn’t know when I might be back.  I turned and exited into the warm Spring day on an empty Duke campus, and just like the last scribe or keeper, I was stepping into an unfamiliar future.

Epilogue

Although as of March 27, 2020,  Duke University Libraries are currently closed, the Libraries anticipate reopening as soon as it is safe and prudent to do so.  In the meantime, you can find a list of services still available during this closure here.

Sources

Bryce, Trevor. The Kingdom of the Hittites. Rev. ed.  Oxford University Press, 2005.

Casson, Lionel.  Libraries of the Ancient World.  Yale University, 2001.

Roaf, Michael. Cultural Atlas of Mesopotamia and the Ancient Near East.  Facts on File, 1990.

van den Hout, Theo P.J.  “Miles of Clay: Information Management in the Ancient Near Eastern Hittite Empire.”  Fathom Archive, The University of Chicago, 26 October 2002, http://fathom.lib.uchicago.edu/1/777777190247/.

Further Reading

Cline, Eric H.  1177 BC: The Year Civilization Collapsed.  Princeton University Press, 2014.  An overview of the Late Bronze Age Collapse, with thanks to the author for his suggestion.

Inspirations and Resolutions for 2020

Happy New Year from all of us at the Digital Production Center! In this pictorial posting, I figured we should start the New Year right with some images and collections that are inspiring, funny, and just stir my heart. It begins with “The Future Calls!”

I went down the “future” rabbit hole and stumbled upon Martin Luther King’s “The Look to the Future”:

And came upon this lovely image:

YES! THE FUTURE IS MY OWN MAKING!! And with that I came up with some resolutions!

Efficiency is important!

Maybe 5 minutes is a bit ambitious, but this will be good for my schedule and good for the environment.  It’s good to have goals.

Exercise More! I definitely felt more inspired to hit the gym after seeing these images from the Anatomical Fugitive Sheets.

Learn about fashion, art, and architecture with Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel!

Self-care! This one-page advertisement from the Broadsides and Ephemera Collection of a Hot Springs spa sure is enticing!

This picturesque image from Reginald Sellman Negatives collection (which is predominantly of a family taking hikes, camping, and roadtripping!) made me quite envious.  Why yes, I’d love to take a hike in a corseted dress!

And speaking of family activities, the Memory Project and Behind the Veil collections reminded me that I really need talk to my parents and other family members more to gather and document their stories.

Why not pick up a foreign language?

Support a cause!

Spend more time with my kids! They grow up so quickly.

Lastly, and probably most importantly, VOTE!

So…what are your resolutions? And don’t tell me 300 ppi!

 

CaiaSoft: The GFA Replacement

This fall, Library ITS is helping the Library Service Center (LSC) plan the transition to new high density storage management software. We are engaging with CaiaSoft who provides new software that supports improved workflow processes and reporting for the LSC.

Why Is This Important?

The LSC is best described as the Libraries’ “Grand Central Station”, a topic highlighted in a 2012 article about the Center’s value to DUL.

The center houses roughly 6 million books, documents and archival materials belonging to Duke and other library systems. With this in mind, it is very important to have up-to-date technology, and software services that promotes efficient workflows.

Why Are We Planning This?

GFA, the LSC’s current software tool is running on an unsupported, end-of-life operating system.

As a result, we run the risk of unwanted processing delays in the event of a failure on the current server. In turn, these delays would affect staff, researchers, and others looking for materials located at the LSC.

Who Is Planning This?

The project’s cross-division team involves staff from the following DUL departments:

  • Access and Delivery Services
  • DUL Technical Services
  • Rubenstein Research Services
  • Library Service Center
  • Library ITS

When Are We Planning This?

The transition to CaiaSoft is intended to take place on a weekend in January 2020. After this, LSC staff and supporting departments expect to use CaiaSoft to manage items located at the LSC warehouse.

Prep Work

The Project Team, during the planning stages, will have these goals in mind:

  • Overseeing data loading and accuracy
  • Creating and documenting workflows
  • Managing scripts to ensure ALEPH integration
  • Ensuring future seamless FOLIO integration

Expected Benefits

The project team has identified several key benefits, most noteworthy is improved workflow support. In addition, other  benefits identified by the Project Team are (but not limited to):

  • Web Browser Access
    CaiaSoft runs as a web application. In contrast, GFA only runs within a SSH session and requires the use of added software.
  • Item-level Data Management
    Staff can create “data flags”, and assign them at item-level.  In contrast, this feature is not available in GFA.
  • Data Auditing
    CaiaSoft offers this feature, while GFA does not.
  • FOLIO Integration
    CaiaSoft developers are active in supporting FOLIO.
More Feature Comparisons

A full list of feature comparisons is available on our WIKI page — look for the “Feature Comparison – CAIASOFT vs GFA” section.

Questions? We Have Answers…

I will be available at “First Wednesday” on November 6 to take questions and (hopefully) provide answers.

Giao’s Whirlwind Experience as an ARL-LCDP Fellow

The Association of Research Libraries’ Leadership and Career Development Program (LCDP) just recently completed the capstone institute for the 2018-2019 cohort. As a member of that cohort, called “The Disruptors,” I wanted to showcase the program. First of all, it was a year-long program that consisted of an orientation, two institutes, a visit to my career coach’s institution, and a capstone institute.

2018-2019 ARL LCDP Fellows.

The Disruptors included librarians who hail mostly from ARL member institutions from all over the country and Canada. The program is intended for librarians of color who are mid-career and are interested in leadership development. The ARL LCDP was an eye-opening experience – one that gave me perspectives from my cohort that I would have never gleaned otherwise, one that allowed us to learn from each other’s challenges and successes, and one that has given me a cohort that I can always rely upon as I go through my professional journey.  

I’ll start from the beginning. The orientation in Washington DC was an opportunity for the 24 of us to get to know each other, to establish learning expectations for ourselves and each other, and to plot our journey as a group. We listed topics that we’d like to explore together (i.e. strategic planning, open access, fundraising etc.), and explored the idea of leadership together. Mark Puente, the Director of Diversity and Leadership Programs at ARL, and DeEtta Jones moderated this and many of our discussions (in person and online). What a fantastic duo Mark and DeEtta were – they make facilitation and instruction look easy!

The first Leadership Institute was hosted by The Ohio State University Library. Ohio in the middle of December was a truly invigorating experience. I learned a great deal about all kinds of management issues, including emotional intelligence and conflict resolution, and had opportunities to hear from library leaders such as Damon Jaggars, John Cawthorne, Jose Diaz, Deidra Herring, and Alexia Hudson-Ward. We also received a fantastic tour of their newly renovated flagship Thompson Memorial Library. This library reminded me of the Roman god, Janus, with two faces – one that looked to the past and another that looked to the future. One side of the library had a more traditional façade, consistent with the campus’s more stately frontages, and the other side had a modern look, built primarily with concrete, metal, and glass. What an amazing building that seamlessly combined their vibrant traditions with ambitious modernity. My career coach, Eileen Theodore-Shusta, from Ohio University, even drove up to meet me for dinner in Columbus, Ohio! What a treat it was to have met my career coach so early in the process! The company and the food were fantastic. It was such a hoot to have frozen custard in the middle of winter!

Interior view of the Thompson Library. Image by Brad Feinknopf via Elledecor.com

The second Leadership Institute was hosted by the University of Alberta, in Edmonton, Canada. What a lovely sight to see the Canadian plains in full bloom during May. Interestingly too (since I had never visited Canada at this time of year), the sun didn’t set until 10:00 pm! That was a slightly crazy insomnia-inducing experience. This Leadership Institute was facilitated by Kathryn Deiss and Melanie Hawks. As one of the founders of the Minnesota Leadership Institute, Kathryn shared her experiences and thoughts on diversity, equity, and inclusivity. We also learned a great deal from University of Alberta Libraries’ University Librarian, Dale Askey, and his professional journey. Preparation, perseverance, ambition, and risk-taking. All those words, and some more, crystallized my impression of that conversation.

View of the Kairos Blanket exercise. Image from kairosblanketexercise.org

The stand-out experience of this institute, I believe, was the Kairos Blanket exercise.  This was an immersive exercise that the entire cohort participated in. We began with a full house and quickly saw members of our group expelled from our respective lands either by death, disease, or governmental mandates (of course this was all pretend, but it was still quite striking). The group also read out loud the past experiences of First Nation Communities. To hear these stories of resilience against systematic violence and loss uttered by voices from the cohort members, was stark and emotional. This link provides more information about the program. The Kairos Blanket exercise, along with revelations on the Canadian government’s approach towards reconciliation with First Nation communities (aka Native Americans in the US) were deeply informative.

There were several highlights in the program beyond the events that we attended. Each LCDP Fellow underwent a Leadership Practices Inventory, a 360 assessment of our leadership skills. This assessment involved our reporting officer, our colleagues, and our direct reports. This was an incredibly enlightening experience, as many of us had not undergone such a review of this detail before.

Giao with her Career Coach, Eileen Theodore-Shusta, at Ohio University.

Also, each LCDP Fellow was paired up with a Career Coach – a librarian in a leadership role – who provided us insights into leadership and administration. As part of this program, the Career Coach would host their fellow at their institution. I had the wonderful opportunity to be paired with Eileen Theodore-Shusta of Ohio University. As the Director of Planning, Assessment, and Organizational Effectiveness at Ohio University, Eileen provided me valuable insights into library administration and management from a Human Resource perspective. What a fantastic visit to the beautiful Ohio University campus as well. I visited their Archives, Special Collections, Digital Archives, and even perused their Southeast Asia Collection.

Another integral piece to the LCDP experience was the Equity Toolkit. In between the institutes, we had  webinars and lessons from the Equity Toolkit, created by DeEtta Jones and Associates. This Toolkit included modules on Cultural Competence, Bias in the Workplace, and The Inclusive Manager. Using a combination of videos, text, quizzes and reflections, the Equity Toolkit was chock full of information and revelations. Also, this portion of the program included webinars where LCDP fellows and their career coaches were invited , as well as their supervisors, and the up-line administrators. The objective was to not only “preach to the choir”, but to include allies and influential voices in the discussion.

At last, the Capstone Leadership Institute in Washington DC, was the finale as we said our goodbyes. The Capstone was also a new beginning as we adopted our moniker, The Disruptors. We attended the ARL Directors’ evening reception and sat alongside library directors in the Fall  ARL Association meeting. Jennifer Garrett, Director of Talent Management at North Carolina State University, eloquently highlighted the ARL LCDP experience to these Library Directors, and Elaine Westbrooks, the University Librarian of UNC Chapel Hill’s Library, spoke about her time as a career coach and perfectly bookended the speech with her memories as a former ARL LCDP fellow. After all the celebrations, we reconvened, reminisced, and planned for the challenges and opportunities before us. 

The 2018-2019 ARL LCDP cohort in Ohio University. Image from arl.org.

How do we continue this journey? One step at a time. With each other.

Thank you to my former dean, Catherine Quinlan at the University of Southern California, and Duke University Libraries for your support and encouragement. It is on the shoulders of giants (and forward thinking institutions) that I see the world of great challenges and opportunities before me.

 

 

Agile 101

Here in the DUL Information Technology Services organization, we continue to embrace Agile concepts, applied to many different types of projects, including the Integrated Library System (ILS), the development of specialized repositories, and even the exhibits hosted in the Libraries. Check out the amazing new Senses of Venice exhibit that opened last week.

I like to think of Agile as a mindset rather than a specific tool set or framework (like scrum).  The four values envisioned in the 2001 Agile Manifesto were devised in deliberate contrast to the rigor and slowness of erstwhile software development practices, and these concepts are still quite relevant today:

Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
Working software over comprehensive documentation
Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
Responding to change over following a plan

Sometimes, when things develop as a backlash, the pendulum can swing too far the other way and we throw out some of the tried and true good bits.  On the other hand, we can slip back, as described in Steve Bank’s HBR piece, “When Waterfall Principles Sneak Back into Agile Workflows”.

Pendulums swing, but basically, when you face uncertainty, try something you think might work, get feedback, and adjust accordingly.