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Re: A question regarding use case writing

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  • aacockburn
    ... words ... #1 - I m not sure this discussion really belongs in the agile- usability list. However, here we are, so read on... #2 - Dan Rawsthorne is correct
    Message 1 of 8 , Oct 19, 2004
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      --- In agile-usability@yahoogroups.com, "Junaidurrehman"
      <junaidrehman2000@y...> wrote:
      > An issue is arising between our team members, regarding use of
      words
      > " will and would" in the Buiness use cases document.
      >
      > I have to find out about use of words " will and would " in the
      > business use case writing.

      #1 - I'm not sure this discussion really belongs in the agile-
      usability list. However, here we are, so read on...

      #2 - Dan Rawsthorne is correct in his reply --- it shouldn't really
      matter; there are much more important things to worry about than the
      tense of the verb. If I were to run across variations in verb tense I
      wouldn't even bother to mark them up.

      #3 - (below)

      >
      > For example i am writing business use case:
      >
      > "A user " will " make order and then receive the
      bill .............
      > OrderBoker " would " be responsible for check the amount of paid
      > bill ....."
      >

      #3 - I like to write everything in the present tense, as though it is
      happening as we watch:
      ... "The user places the order" ...
      -> in the next clause we can't use the verb "receive" because we
      always show who has control of the action, and the "user receiving"
      is not actually in control. Presumably,
      ... "The system presents the user with the bill " ...
      -> in the next clause "would be responsible" is not an active
      action, so presumably,
      ... "The OrderBroker ..." actually I can't finish the sentence -
      because as written it leaves out all action. We don't write that this
      person "checks the bill" because that misses out on WHY the person is
      checking the bill (in order to What?). Presumably the OrderBroker is
      *verifying* that it is correct, but that information isn't given in
      the sample text. My best guess is that
      ... "The OrderBroker verifies that the bill is correct" ...

      #4 - Having said all that, it is entirely possible that in your
      context you like to have a special verb tense for the users of the
      system that implies that your programmers don't have control over
      them [ Mind you, you can avoid verb tenses simply by writing, "The
      scope of the contract does not include controlling the motions of the
      user" or similar ], distinct from verb tenses for the system, which
      you are supposed to have control over.
      I've never needed that distinction -- Usually we understand in the
      contract that the programmers are only responsible for the system's
      side of the actions -- but then again, I've never worked on military
      projects.
      If you're only working within business, you shouldn't need multiple
      verb tenses.
      Or if you're really determined to use multiple verb tenses, make up a
      tiny glossary that sets your conventions out.

      Alistair
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