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Re: [agile-usability] How can usability engineers join in agile?

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  • Adrian Howard
    On 26 Mar 2009, at 14:51, ö© Ç® wrote: Hi all, Hi right back at ya - welcome! I am new to agile and have read some materials about it. I found that people
    Message 1 of 2 , Mar 28 2:33 AM
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      On 26 Mar 2009, at 14:51, 雯 钱 wrote:

      Hi all,

      Hi right back at ya - welcome!

      I am new to agile and have read some materials about it. I found that
      people always talk about how to use UCD in agile project. Usability
      engineers are seldom mentioned in agile. As a usability engineer
      without UI design skill, I feel a little confused.

      I think there are lots of places usability folk should be able to fit in.

      For example in an XPish environment:

      * In the planning game they can help out with things like impromptu paper-prototyping / testing with the customer / team to help define the iterations stories and help spot places where good/bad usability is going to affect the business value of the stories.

      * During the iteration they can help with gorilla usability testing of new features as they're produced, helping the developers and the customer get to a mutually satisfactory definition of done-done

      * At the end of each iteration they can run more formal usability tests and use the feedback from those as input into the next iterations stories - helping improve the system as a whole.

      * All of the time they can help educate the rest of the team (including the customer in that) in usability and usability testing issues so that everybody involved can start spotting these sort of issues - helping reduce a bottleneck from the development process.

      They should be able to help make sure that the customer is really getting the business value that they're expecting out of the stories, and help discover new ways to get value out in the future.

      I try to find myself a position in agile, so I redesigned the
      well-known UCD development graph. I am not sure whether it would
      work. So could you tell me your comments on the attached graph?

      Depends what's in those boxes and how the people in them are working together. It certainly doesn't immediately say "agile" to me for a few reasons:

      * The phrase "technical limitations" doesn't immediately speak to me about how I see agile iterative cycles evolve. Can you speak a little bit more about what that phrase means to you?

      * We've got developers and designers as separate roles (and I'm not quite sure what kind of person "designer" is in this context. Code designer? UI designer? Something else?).

      * The customer doesn't seem to be involved outside cycle 0. In agile teams they're closely involved throughout the whole process.

      * The usability folk seem to be completely isolated from direct contact with the developers.

      Have you had a chance to work on an agile team yet? If so can you let us know what the experience was like? Without a narrative of how the people are interacting it looks like something that could equally be applied to a more traditional waterfall development environment.


      delicious.com/adrianh - twitter.com/adrianh - adrianh@...

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