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106543Re: [XP] How should one start a project from an Agile/XP approach?

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  • Ron Jeffries
    May 2, 2005
      On Sunday, May 1, 2005, at 9:53:47 PM, James Carr wrote:

      > I've been spending my freetime in the past few months reading up as
      > much as I can on Agile software development methods, but every day
      > requirements (or should they even be called that? I'll explain later)
      > cross my desk and I find myself stumped on how to begin. Most of the
      > time, I'll scribble down a small list of what is wanted/desired, and
      > let the project move from there (albeit poorly).

      Well ... it seems to me that wherever these requirements are
      crossing my desk from, I need to have an agreement with whoever
      they're coming from as to what is to be done and when.

      So tell me more about what you mean by "crossing your desk", where
      they come from, who's asking, what they expect you to do?

      > Now, I'm not sure the "requirements" tha cross my desk can even be
      > considered requirements as they are either as vague as a "job
      > application system" (this is a prime example of my first death march
      > project... another firm handled interaction with the client....
      > poorly) with a simple one paragraph write up of what they want
      > (leaving out all the details) or a 10 page business launch concept
      > plan on a new site.

      Maybe your first N hours should be spent writing up what will be
      done, and charging for it?

      Or sitting down with people deciding with them what is to be done,
      and charging for it?

      > I guess what I'm asking is, how to start? Let's say for example that
      > the requirements are given for an online auction site. So uh, where do
      > you go from there, considering you've just been given the basics, such
      > as "allows for user feedback, auction notifications, etc" ?

      I would feel strongly that I had to sit with someone who knew what
      they wanted, so I would work to make that happen.

      One way would be to communicate, in various ways ... phone calls,
      emails, messages stuck through the bars of my cell and tied to
      pigeons, that "we need to talk".

      One way would be to send back a poor and vague requirements
      document, clearly a draft, clearly needing revision, and wait for
      the angry phone call.

      One way would be to build the world's simplest auction site in two
      days, send it back and say "what do you want next"?

      What other ways are there ... ?

      Ron Jeffries
      The central "e" in "Jeffries" is silent ... and invisible.
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