RE: [agile-usability] Re: The missing manifesto (& things I don't understand)
MessageIn this debate there have been a few things I don't understand. We have talked about a manifesto being missing but what do we mean and what is needed? We have seen several quite different positions on this:---------------Jeff Patton originally asked,"Does there exist in the UCD community some element of common ground? Some general brief understanding of what we mean by UCD? - similar to the role the agile manifesto serves to the agile community. I don't think there is - but I could have missed something. Assuming there's not, do you [UCD people] believe the community suffers for not having this shared understanding? Does there exist in the UCD community some element of common ground? Some general brief understanding of what we mean by UCD? - similar to the role the agile manifesto serves to the agile community. I don't think there is - but I could have missed something."Some of us UCD people (eg Carl Myhill) agreed that we don't have a manifesto nor any statement outlining common ground and that this has some problems associated with it.Ron Jeffries said ----------------------"One of the great ironies of the past few years in agile software
development has been the dividing of the agile space into factions. "and" ... agility is about coming together. This makes me think that a separate Agile
Usability manifesto might not be quite the right notion. "
I wonder what you mean by this Ron. What kind of manifesto are we missing and who do you think it is for? Are you suggesting that we should add some UCD stuff to the agile manifesto as it stands, so that agile developers can do usability right? Is UCD another faction of agile? Most of us UCD folk regard what we do as quite different than what developers do. It seems you are suggesting a different way of looking at that.What do you envisage as the way ahead? Who is the manifesto for, UCD people or Agile people wanting to do UCD? Or what do you think is missing exactly?Josh said ----------------------"What is the manifesto under discussion? Is it a UCD
manifesto, or an agile-usability manifesto?
The "UCD community" is truly in need of some basic
coming together strategies. ...A manifesto of some sort could
be a valuable tool.
On the other hand, while this "agile-usability"
discussion group is engaged in a really interesting and
valuable discussion, I'm not sure we're ready for (or
need) a manifesto. We're still working out the basic
ground rules of our conversations and collaborations.
So, I think Josh is saying that he believes a UCD manifesto would be useful but that some kind of combined 'agile-usabilty' manifesto might be a bit ambituous at the moment. Josh, who would an agile-usability manifesto be aimed at?Michael Mahemoff said-------"it's easier to be concrete about something that's more
narrowly defined. So I'd argue we're more ready for an "agile-usability"
manifesto than a usability manifesto.""...I would argue that if there is to be a manifesto, it
should be agile-usability, not just-usability. Aside from this being the
wrong forum, a usability manifesto is inherently difficult."I don't share your clarity Michael. Who would this agile-usability manifesto be aimed at? I can see a UCD manifesto providing a mandate or a modus operandi for UCD professionals, but I dont see so clearly what you mean or who it is for.Jon Meads said----------I'm not convinced that a manifesto is needed for UCD. Having been in the UCD community for over 20 years, I think most of us realize the following:
So, I think Jon is saying that we don't need a manifesto because it is already implicit and most of us would agree on what it should say, and those things are those which Jon listed above.Robin Dymond said----------What a manifesto could do is to bring together a common set of xCD values, and provide a banner/brand under which all of various xCD camps could take a common message forward to those looking to advance their capabilities.I agree with the bringing together part, though the phrase about advancing capabilities is a bit odd but I think i know what you mean, like UCD Capability in the CMM sense.----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------My conclusions===========After reading all these comments I began rethinking what I am doing here and what this agile_usability thing is all about. I feel like I just walked into a lecture 20 minutes late and am the annoying person who still thinks it's ok to ask questions even though they missed the start. So, I re-read the agile-usability yahoo group intro and I quite like it and quite agree with the intent.One aim was to 'Define usability roles on agile projects' - I think this fits with the idea of recognising there is a UCD role on the project (some people seemed unhappy talking about roles, but without this, us UCD people don't even come to the party). I think it also fits with the idea of having a manifesto so that we are all clear on what that UCD person should do in the team, what will be there modus operandi and their guiding principles?I really don't know what people mean by an 'agile-usability' manifesto. Does this mean a manifesto specifically for the UCD person working on an Agile project? If so, I'd rather go with the UCD manifesto and make it work for both. Another aim was to, "Describe essential usability practices usable on agile projects - practices that are lighter weight and more collaborative . " Perhaps this is what those advocating an 'agile-usabiity' manifesto are talking about, specific usability practices for this kind of development???------------------What is this agile-usability group all about, the yahoo group intro--------------------------This group has the goal of connecting the usability community to the agile development community - and both these groups to the business community they both serve.
- Usability is critical to success use of an interactive system or product;
- Usability is not the same as User Experience but affects it greatly;
- Both are obtained by focusing design on "what the user can do" as opposed to what the system/product can do;
need to design for usability and this requires understanding:
- who the users are,
- what the context of use will be, and
- what factors will affect their interaction.
The usability community has a lot of guidance to offer software development on requirements elicitation, product design, user interaction and interface design, and usability testing.
The agile community offers the potential for higher software quality by way of agile development techniques. The agile community offers the potential for the business community to reap larger benefits through incremental delivery which might allow businesses to earn return on software sooner, or cease development on unprofitable projects before too much capital is sacrificed.
But, agile software development approaches described so far seem to give short shrift to usability practices. If you're from the agile community and disagree with that statement, this is the group where you may want to say so.
Many folks from the usability community seem to disagree with agile approaches in particular notions such as emergent design and incremental delivery. Those proficient in usability practices believe that failing to gather and act on critical user data short changes the users of the software and the software's subsequent usability and value to the users and owners of that software. If you're from the usability community and disagree with anything in those statements, this is the group where you may want to say so.
I have hopes that this groups might move forward to:
* Define usability roles on agile projects
* Define a basic body of usability knowledge all members of a project should understand
* Describe essential usability practices usable on agile projects - practices that are lighter weight and more collaborative
* Describe where specific financial returns are for including usability practices on agile projects