EppsNet Archive: Methodology

Developers Should Abandon Agile

No matter what framework or method your management thinks they are applying, learn to work this way: Produce running, tested, working, integrated software every two weeks, every week. Build your skills until you can create a new fully operational version every day, twice a day, multiple times a day. Keep the design of that software clean. As it grows, the… Read more →

How’s That WBS Working for You?

Michael James posted this annotated job listing in the Scrum group on Yahoo . . . [Redacted] is looking for a dedicated and experienced application developer [blah blah blah] to ensure delivery of high quality artifacts, to adhere and to follow [Redacted]’s SDLC. This is an excellent opportunity [blah blah blah] well-known Fortune 50 company. Tasks and responsibilities [clip] Provide… Read more →

Scrum Doesn’t Do Anything

In the end it doesn’t matter what names you use for your processes, good people will do good work and continuously improve what they do. So much of the discussion around Lean versus Scrum (etc.) is about marketing hype, selling consulting and training services, and cornering the market with new name-brands. . . . Scrum is not a methodology, it… Read more →

Waterfall: The USSR of Software

Think of waterfall as being similar in concept to the old USSR central planning of the economy. Think of Scrum as similar to a market economy. — Ken Schwaber Read more →

Antipattern: Exactly on Schedule

I work with a company that has the following set of milestones in its standard project methodology: Vision/Scope Complete Requirements Complete Design Complete Definition Complete Build Complete Test Complete Rollout Complete I’ve noticed an interesting pattern at the weekly enterprise status meetings: a significant number of projects report being exactly on schedule for each milestone — not one single day… Read more →

How Long Should it Take to Define a Project?

Project X hit a milestone called Vision/Scope seven months ago, 99 days late. It’s 312 days late on the current milestone, which is called Definition. To date, the project has consumed 36,000 labor hours — 18 person-years — and $2.5 million. At this morning’s enterprise-level status meeting, it was decided that Project X will be put on indefinite hold, as… Read more →

A Forceful Dose of Reality

. . . there is nothing like a tested, integrated system for bringing a forceful dose of reality into any project. Documents can hide all sorts of flaws. Untested code can hide plenty of flaws. But when people actually sit in front of a system and work with it, then flaws become truly apparent: both in terms of bugs and… Read more →

A Methodology Question

Let’s say your software development methodology tells you to do A, then B, then C, then D, and so on, until you get to Z, at which point, you’re done. And let’s say you do A, then B, then C, then D, and you notice that your project is not going according to plan for reasons that appear to be… Read more →

Respect the Classics, Man: No Silver Bullet

This essay by Turing Award-winner Fred Brooks is almost 20 years old now. Sadly, the ideas on incremental development are still considered outside the mainstream in IT, which continues to favor the widely-discredited waterfall approach. Read more →

The Waterfall Approach Persists as an Urban Myth

Much of present-day software acquisition procedure rests upon the assumption that one can specify a satisfactory system in advance, get bids for its construction, have it built, and install it. I think this assumption is fundamentally wrong, and that many software acquisition problems spring from that fallacy. — Fred Brooks, “No Silver Bullet: Essence and Accidents of Software Engineering” We… Read more →

The Comfort of Methodology

Ill-specified systems are as common today as they were when we first began to talk about Requirements Engineering twenty or more years ago. Yet the task of creating complete and perfect specifications is not rocket science. We have adequate and comprehensible theories at our disposal for specification of finite state automata. We have proceeded over the past decades to develop… Read more →