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RE: [XP] Ask the Customer

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  • Charlie Poole
    Ron, ... Agreed on both counts. ... Ah. Or maybe we tried XP and it didn t work. I can see that would be a problem if it keeps people from trying things. ...
    Message 1 of 142 , Apr 1, 2002
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      Ron,

      > > From descriptions of your own practices on the list, it has seemed
      > > that you are pretty flexible in doing what you think is right - or
      > > possible - even when it doesn't match XP practices exactly.
      >
      > Yes. Everyone should do what they think is right, not what someone
      > else tells them is right. It is sometimes prudent to listen pretty
      > hard before doing what we think is right, however.

      Agreed on both counts.

      > > So in practical terms, what's the distinction between one who has
      > > a "tight" definition of XP but is willing to compromise it when
      > > called for and someone who does the same things but calls whatever
      > > they do "XP?"
      >
      > > Not a position - just a question.
      >
      > Darned if I know. We're caught between these two poles: on the one
      > hand, lots of people say "oh, we already basically do XP, there's no
      > need to really look into it". On the other hand, we know and desire
      > that people who do XP can, will, and should ultimately learn a better
      > way that XP out of the box.

      Ah. Or maybe "we tried XP and it didn't work." I can see that would
      be a problem if it keeps people from trying things.

      > The only way I know to learn what XP is is to do the practices. Once
      > folks are good at the practices, I trust that they'll do better than
      > the practices. Until then, I'm afraid that they don't know.

      Yes, that's my personal fear as well. Whether in XP or anything else,
      it's sometimes hard for me to tell whether I've gone beyond normal
      expectations or just missed the point.

      > Not an answer, just a reply.

      It'll do.
    • Charlie Poole
      Daniel, ... I haven t done stories in study mode but I might try it some time. What I have usually done in this situation is to talk with the people who do
      Message 142 of 142 , Apr 7, 2002
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        Daniel,

        > > Laurent,
        > >
        > > > > Since I like to think that I devise simple solutions, that
        > puts me at a
        > > > > disadvantage in such discussions. If I give out too much of the
        > > > > solution, the client may suddenly decide they don't need me at all!
        > > >
        > > > Why would this be bad ?
        > >
        > > 1. Because I may need the job.
        >
        > Right!
        >
        > > 2. Because I believe the client is often wrong to think this.
        >
        > Also right.
        >
        > But it is still a risk and problem.
        >
        > Are you able to get the "study" done by getting stories from the
        > client, or are you using more traditional methods?

        I haven't done stories in "study" mode but I might try it some time.

        What I have usually done in this situation is to talk with the people
        who do the work and shadow them a bit - assuming an inhouse system.
        I ask them what problems they have and what the consequences are. I
        ask them what one thing would make their jobs easier, etc. I ask
        similar questions of managers. At some point, it's clear what needs
        to be done and I write that in a report.

        The "study" isn't the design of a solution to their problems. It's
        something that outlines the problems and says I'll solve them. Well,
        it's a bit more than that, since it describes who will be involved
        in figuring out the solution and how we'll proceed to do it. I might
        recommend, for example, that we all sit around a table and think of
        the things the system will do. This "study" contributes nothing to
        the completion of the app or the sum of knowledge in the universe.
        What it does - in the situations where I have had to do it - is
        create an atmosphere in which management will empower me and others
        to solve the problems, so it does have a value.

        Charlie Poole
        cpoole@...
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