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Re: Witchdoctors

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  • aacockburn
    ... Time for a bit of a sense of humor, I think. I call myself a Project Witchdoctor because the people I help usually have no idea of what s connected to
    Message 1 of 283 , Jul 29, 2008
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      --- In agile-usability@yahoogroups.com, "James Page" <jamespage@...>
      wrote:
      >
      > >
      > > > The second reason is that it makes Usability a
      > > > laughing stock. It would also be like me calling myself
      > >
      > > I call myself a Project Witchdoctor.
      > >> Would Usability Witchdoctor work for you?
      > >
      > >
      > As my dictionary describes it as somebody that cures the pretend and
      > imaginary, would you want to call yourself that?
      >

      Time for a bit of a sense of humor, I think.

      I call myself a Project Witchdoctor because the people I help usually
      have no idea of what's connected to what, and so what I do looks like
      voodoo or chicken-entrails to them. It's not that /I/ think I'm
      solving imaginary problems, it's that /they/ think there's no rhyme
      or reason to what I'm doing, and they occasionally think things
      worked out well /despite/ me, not /because/ of me.

      Those in my voodoo club understand what I think I'm looking at and
      are similarly amused/frustrated that the others don't.

      (Gery, are you reading this?)

      Alistair
    • George Dinwiddie
      ... William, why do you say apparently not? Is not the text appearing on the screen part of working software no matter whether the text is compiled into
      Message 283 of 283 , Aug 21, 2008
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        William Pietri wrote:
        > The team decides the highest priority is to fix that. So the whole team
        > spends the week rummaging through the content management system,
        > rewriting copy, changing labels, clarifying wording, and so on. Not a
        > line of code is written; no software is produced.
        >
        > Upon release, key metrics improve significantly. Users are happier,
        > signups are more frequent, retention goes up. Millions of extra dollars
        > will be made over the next year. By external measures, it is the most
        > useful week of work all year.
        >
        > Would the business call that a week with progress? Yes. Would the team
        > call that progress? Yes. Would that Agile Manifesto? Apparently not.

        William, why do you say "apparently not?"

        Is not the text appearing on the screen part of "working software" no
        matter whether the text is compiled into the object code or read out of
        some data store?

        Is this not an example of "satisfy[ing] the customer through early and
        continuous delivery of valuable software?"

        Is this not a case of "deliver[ing] working software frequently?"

        Is this not an example of "business people and developers [working]
        together daily?"

        Is this not an excellent example of a "team reflect[ing] on how to
        become more effective, then tun[ing] and adjust[ing] its behavior
        accordingly?"

        Your other example, where "eventually, after many months of work, they
        decide they can release," seems to violate several principles,
        particularly, "Agile processes promote sustainable development. The
        sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant
        pace indefinitely."

        - George

        --
        ----------------------------------------------------------------------
        * George Dinwiddie * http://blog.gdinwiddie.com
        Software Development http://www.idiacomputing.com
        Consultant and Coach http://www.agilemaryland.org
        ----------------------------------------------------------------------
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