About the Cover Illustration – Agile ALM: Lightweight tools and Agile strategies

About the Cover Illustration

On the cover of Agile ALM is “A habitant of Brgud,” a hamlet on the eastern side of the peninsula of Istria in the Adriatic Sea, off Croatia. The illustration is taken from a reproduction of an album of Croatian traditional costumes from the mid-nineteenth century by Nikola Arsenovic, published by the Ethnographic Museum in Split, Croatia, in 2003. The illustrations were obtained from a helpful librarian at the Ethnographic Museum in Split, itself situated in the Roman core of the medieval center of the town: the ruins of Emperor Diocletian’s retirement palace from around AD 304. The book includes finely colored illustrations of figures from different regions of Croatia, accompanied by descriptions of the costumes and of everyday life.

In this region of Croatia, men wear black woolen trousers and jackets that are decorated with embroidered trim. The figure on the cover is wearing a vest and short jacket over a white linen shirt, black trousers, and a flat black hat that completes the outfit. The color and style of the embroidery, thin blue piping in this case, indicate the town or village of the costume’s origin.

Dress codes and lifestyles have changed over the last 200 years, and the diversity by region, so rich at the time, has faded away. It’s now hard to tell apart the inhabitants of different continents, let alone of different hamlets or towns separated by only a few miles. Perhaps we have traded cultural diversity for a more varied personal life—certainly for a more varied and fast-paced technological life.

Manning celebrates the inventiveness and initiative of the computer business with book covers based on the rich diversity of regional life of two centuries ago, brought back to life by illustrations from old books and collections like this one.