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Re: [agile-usability] Minimal commitment UX design

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  • Brian Marick
    ... See, that s the issue. I recently had a client who was converting an old, old system from one type of database to another. It was hell. But it would wrong
    Message 1 of 33 , Oct 2, 2005
      On Oct 1, 2005, at 9:28 AM, Joshua Seiden wrote:
      >
      >> 2) How could the system have been built such that the decision to
      >> switch could have been made later - still with reasonable cost?
      >
      > Don't know. I'm not in the construction business ;-)

      See, that's the issue. I recently had a client who was converting an
      old, old system from one type of database to another. It was hell. But
      it would wrong to conclude that's an unavoidable fact about systems
      that use databases. It's just a consequence of the way they originally
      decided to do it. We could go back in time and say to them, "What
      you're about to do is a *bad* idea. Do this instead. It's only a
      trivially different amount of work, it won't affect anything users see,
      but you'll be happy you did if you ever switch databases."

      So your data point isn't suggestive unless we could expose the design
      to an expert and have that person say either what my database person
      would have said or "I cannot see any way to build a system that would
      support UX 1 and also easily be switched to UX 2."

      If we're to understand what we have to get right up front and what can
      be deferred, we need to look in some detail at both successes and
      failures.


      >> 3) How can the system be built such that *not* switching doesn't
      >> result in a lot of work with no payoff?
      >
      > I'm not sure I understand this question. Can you clarify what you're
      > asking?

      Suppose there's a way of building a system such that it both supports
      UX 1 today and would make it easy to switch to UX 2 tomorrow. That way
      makes the system 50% more expensive to build today. If the switch is
      never made, that's a lot of money spent with no return. We need a way
      where additional up-front cost is low.

      -----
      Brian Marick, independent consultant
      Mostly on agile methods with a testing slant
      www.exampler.com, www.testing.com/cgi-bin/blog
      Book in progress: www.exampler.com/book
    • Brian Marick
      ... See, that s the issue. I recently had a client who was converting an old, old system from one type of database to another. It was hell. But it would wrong
      Message 33 of 33 , Oct 2, 2005
        On Oct 1, 2005, at 9:28 AM, Joshua Seiden wrote:
        >
        >> 2) How could the system have been built such that the decision to
        >> switch could have been made later - still with reasonable cost?
        >
        > Don't know. I'm not in the construction business ;-)

        See, that's the issue. I recently had a client who was converting an
        old, old system from one type of database to another. It was hell. But
        it would wrong to conclude that's an unavoidable fact about systems
        that use databases. It's just a consequence of the way they originally
        decided to do it. We could go back in time and say to them, "What
        you're about to do is a *bad* idea. Do this instead. It's only a
        trivially different amount of work, it won't affect anything users see,
        but you'll be happy you did if you ever switch databases."

        So your data point isn't suggestive unless we could expose the design
        to an expert and have that person say either what my database person
        would have said or "I cannot see any way to build a system that would
        support UX 1 and also easily be switched to UX 2."

        If we're to understand what we have to get right up front and what can
        be deferred, we need to look in some detail at both successes and
        failures.


        >> 3) How can the system be built such that *not* switching doesn't
        >> result in a lot of work with no payoff?
        >
        > I'm not sure I understand this question. Can you clarify what you're
        > asking?

        Suppose there's a way of building a system such that it both supports
        UX 1 today and would make it easy to switch to UX 2 tomorrow. That way
        makes the system 50% more expensive to build today. If the switch is
        never made, that's a lot of money spent with no return. We need a way
        where additional up-front cost is low.

        -----
        Brian Marick, independent consultant
        Mostly on agile methods with a testing slant
        www.exampler.com, www.testing.com/cgi-bin/blog
        Book in progress: www.exampler.com/book
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