User experience flow from stars to road

Companies, not surprisingly, want to make business. New products are not created just for fun but they should contribute to this overall plan. For that, a performing team combining a couple fields of expertise is an excellent asset. Each of these experts brings in their respective methodology. The article agile innovation from stars to road outlines a basic collaborative structure. This article is about one aspect: the users’ experiences.

Continue reading

User story shopping – a sports event management system

The challenge awaits our project: How to deal with the many expectations from our customers that are far beyond the project budget? The answer in my current project – the sports event management system – is based on user story mapping. 

Continue reading

grok – negotiate – build up

In our current project, a software for managing sports events, user stories play an important role when it comes to development. Interestingly the focus of the requirements conversation changed completely from one level of maturity to the next. And there is a pattern behind it, as it seems. It leads to user story mapping.

StoryMapping_Leadin
Continue reading

A case for features – a sports event management system

Currently, I’m involved in a project to develop an event management system for large sports events. The goal is to replace a few existing systems with one integrated system that is able to cater for the coming needs. End of elaboration is closing in and we’re planning for the incremental delivery to follow during construction. Budgeting, estimation and release planning all turn around features (Part 2).

Continue reading

User centred business analysis – a sports event management system

Currently, I’m involved in a project to develop an event management system for large sports events. The goal is to replace a few existing systems with one integrated system that is able to cater for the coming needs. The project will last for about five years. The project team will grow to approximately 20 persons. We apply an agile unified process.  

SportsEvent_ProcessMap_Leadin

Part 1: Understanding business is a success factor. We use methods from user centred design rather than from business modeling.

Continue reading

Yet Another Manifesto…….

What is it with the recent rash of manifesto’s?

Since the signing of the Agile Manifesto a plethora of other Manifesto’s have arrived on the scene. Software Craftmanship, Project Management to name but a few.

They add NO value to development, in fact it seems their sole purpose is so that the signatories can make more money.

To me, this feels like the rash of CMM’s that arrived in the 90’s.  The original CMM was a useful tool for measuring the maturity of an organization. We needed one and only one.  The CMM was diluted by a number of new flavours; for Hardware; for Testing; for Software    resulting in a lack of clarity of objectives & direction.  Finally this was consolidated into CMMI and now it has become about implementing maturity (which even sounds ridiculous).

How long will it be before the various manifestos are consolidated into another chocolate teapot? See http://www.usingenglish.com/reference/idioms/about+as+useful+as+a+chocolate+teapot.html

Agility, Common Sense and Agilista Failings

Much of Agile is simply about common sense. Do what is needed when it is needed!

Most of the real value of Agile methods is in how it enables us to knock the rust off old ways of working. The revelation that software development needs “people centric” is, in fact, no revelation at all.

The really big news is that developers need to engage in with the business. Oddly, this is the message that the vast majority of agilista’s fail to deliver to, failing to properly engage the business in the agile development process!

An interesting article in CIO magazine:”Why BAs Are So Important for IT and CIOs”

CIO magazines article on the importance of BAs to IT and CIOs is an interesting read. In particular it reinforces the difference between BAs who slavishly “flog the dead template horse” and those who are communicators and analytical thinkers.  Take a look at the article here.  Which type of BA are you (really)?

 

Why Joey taped a picture of a cake to his wall

If you ever tried to propose an idea to somebody, you have certainly experienced a few personalities, like Joey has in this story. And after having met them Joey, for example, felt the urge to pin a picture of a cake in a sunset to his cubicle walls. For others, this is not sufficient and they have to create a lengthy comic strip. 

Continue reading

Mobile and Agile: Why can’t they get along?

This morning’s RE12 keynote was excellent. Steve Fickas described his use of a gaming engine and other resources to create a virtual environment for testing / requirement elicitation for mobile devices.

Fickas went on to describe how he interfaced mobile devices under development to the virtual environment and use this for testing in early stage development iterations (it is more controlled / manageable than the real world)

Maturity tools for product owners

Pin the maturity cards on the wall. Ask how well do we foresee the change we’re going to inflict with the planned features. “Customers will love it”, the engineer proclaims putting a few features on tree level. The sales rep sourly adds: “If they’ll ever grasp it”, moving them up into the clouds.

Continue reading