Recently, colleague Dave West and I published some research showing how Agile has gone mainstream in both the tech industry and IT departments. Here's another sign of the mainstreaming of Agile: Collabnet's acquisition of Danube.

If you follow the market for developer tools, you've seen milder indicators of this trend already. For example, last year, Atlassian acquired Greenhopper as a plug-in for JIRA. Other tools vendors, such as Compuware, have added Agile configurations to their existing products.

Collabnet's acquisition of Danube is a bigger step. Danube's core product, ScrumWorks, is a lot more than just a configuration or a plug-in. Collabnet now has a fully-featured PLM tool that's designed to model and support the Scrum process. Not only is Collabnet writing a big check to buy Danube, but it's also making a commitment in its portfolio strategy to fit ScrumWorks into its constellation of other products. That's not a trivial amount of additional engineering, support, marketing, and sales effort that Collabnet is assuming. (FYI, here's Dave West's take on this acquisition.)

Other developer tools vendors should ponder Collabnet's move. Moving from Waterfall to Agile changes more than just the checklist for completing a release cycle. Agile also requires changes in values, and even a completely different concept of what a release represents. To support this profound transformation, tools may need more than just tweaks to their functionality.

[Cross-posted at The Heretech.]