Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Some observations on my boys

I have two boys aged 5 & 3.  I have no idea how my gender survives beyond this age range, here's why:

No distance is too short that I can't cover it at full speed.

I like to carry out conversation at ear splitting volume levels.

Anything you ask me to do is, at best, a mere suggestion (unless preceded by "I've told you x times already").

"yeah, she's crying" is empathy.

My selective memory is photographic "awwwww I never get to stay up".

The direction I am running is not the direction I am looking.

I am in constant denial "I'm not a little boy, I'm a big boy.  He's a little boy" .... "No I'm not. Muuuuuuuuuuuuum!".

Are defects the original user stories?

Just asking, and yes the defect comes after you've written something and someone somewhere found out it was not working as expected, but they feel similar to me.  Well at least similar in the context of "We have to have a requirements document signed off by everyone up to the CEO before we can even begin to consider to think about starting some kind of technical specification for the solution, so we could never use stories."

I would guess you already have defects, and when you are decide to fix these there isn't a document that bundles them together in some way (why would you try to do this, most defects would be independent, not all, but most).  There wouldn't be a sign off process, there is nothing to sign off.  The person doing the fix would need to spend time talking with the people who found the defect, and others to work out how to fix it and what the fix will look like - hopefully.

The defects would be - to a greater extent - recorded from the perspective of someone outside the system, rather than a technical task.  Of course there would be some prioritisation on what to fix first, because some defects have a greater impact/value than others.

Defects come with test criteria as standard.

It all feels very story like to me.  Surely if you can work with defects, then it shouldn't be too much of a leap to work with stories.  Maybe.

Friday, April 3, 2009

HBR bloggers wake up; find themselves in 1950s Japan

Managing Resources in an Uncertain World

From a blog called "The Big Shift".
We're moving from a world of push to a world of pull. Push programs operate on one key assumption - that it is possible to forecast future demand. When demand can be forecast, we can efficiently push resources to where they will be needed when they will be needed. But what happens when our forecasting ability diminishes--as it surely has in these big shifting times? Push programs become bottlenecks preventing effective responses to unanticipated changes in demand. In the business world, the result is often large accumulations of inventories.
I hope this isn't new to the authors.  It's probably new to some of the readers.
We only need to look at our dismal record in forecasting business cycles, financial risk, and earnings projections of individual firms from quarter to quarter to see that forecasting is no longer working as well as it once did.
When did the forecasting work?