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Re: [XP] If coach is a programmer, where do I fit in?

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  • jkinghorn@installinc.com
    ... Our biggest problems right now are: managing requirements (internal customer keeps changing them, but wants them all in first release) lack of sufficient
    Message 1 of 6 , May 1, 2000
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      >
      > to repeat the Party Line... what's your biggest problem right now?
      >
      > Steve

      Our biggest problems right now are:
      managing requirements (internal customer keeps changing them, but
      wants them all in first release)
      lack of sufficient testing
      very little project visibility (no progress measurements)

      All of these problems mean we are consistently counting on the
      heroics of the team.

      So, I guess my answer is to start with User Stories and Unit Tests?
    • Randy Coulman
      ... For the first and third problems, I think you actually want the Planning Game, for which you will need the User Stories as game tokens . User Stories
      Message 2 of 6 , May 1, 2000
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        jkinghorn@... wrote:
        >
        > Our biggest problems right now are:
        > managing requirements (internal customer keeps changing them, but
        > wants them all in first release)
        > lack of sufficient testing
        > very little project visibility (no progress measurements)
        >
        > All of these problems mean we are consistently counting on the
        > heroics of the team.
        >
        > So, I guess my answer is to start with User Stories and Unit Tests?
        >

        For the first and third problems, I think you actually want the Planning
        Game, for which you will need the User Stories as "game tokens". User
        Stories will help with "managing requirements", but you need the full
        Planning Game to help the customer understand what it would cost (in
        terms of time, resources, and risk) to have all of the requirements in
        the first release.

        For the second problem, Unit Tests is definitely the answer.

        Randy
        --
        Randy Coulman, M.Sc. Settler Agricultural Software
        RandyC@... 200 - 1911 Park St. Regina, SK S4N 2G5
        Senior Developer Phone: (306) 721-7949 Ext. 224
        Special Projects Fax: (306) 721-1981 http://www.settler.com
      • Donald F. McLean
        ... Not to be contrary, but Unit Tests are only half of the answer - Functional Test are the other. It isn t enough that the program works as designed, it has
        Message 3 of 6 , May 1, 2000
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          Randy Coulman wrote:
          >
          > jkinghorn@... wrote:
          > >
          > > Our biggest problems right now are:
          > > managing requirements (internal customer keeps changing them, but
          > > wants them all in first release)
          > > lack of sufficient testing
          > > very little project visibility (no progress measurements)
          > >
          > > All of these problems mean we are consistently counting on the
          > > heroics of the team.
          > >
          > > So, I guess my answer is to start with User Stories and Unit Tests?
          > >
          >
          > For the first and third problems, I think you actually want the Planning
          > Game, for which you will need the User Stories as "game tokens". User
          > Stories will help with "managing requirements", but you need the full
          > Planning Game to help the customer understand what it would cost (in
          > terms of time, resources, and risk) to have all of the requirements in
          > the first release.
          >
          > For the second problem, Unit Tests is definitely the answer.

          Not to be contrary, but Unit Tests are only half of the answer -
          Functional Test are the other. It isn't enough that the program
          works as designed, it has to be designed to do the right thing.
          --
          Donald McLean dmclean@...
          Space Telescope Science Institute http://www.stsci.edu
          AOL Instant Messaging: DonaldFMcLean
          ------------------------------------------------------------
          There are only four questions of value in life, Don Octavio.
          What is sacred? Of what is the spirit made?
          What is worth living for? And what is worth dying for?
          The answer to each is the same: only love.
          ----From "Don Juan DeMarco" (1995)
        • Randy Coulman
          ... You re right, of course. I guess I was thinking more in terms of Fix your worst problems first , which is the context of the thread. In that context, if
          Message 4 of 6 , May 1, 2000
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            "Donald F. McLean" wrote:
            >
            > Randy Coulman wrote:
            > >
            > > For the second problem, Unit Tests is definitely the answer.
            >
            > Not to be contrary, but Unit Tests are only half of the answer -
            > Functional Test are the other. It isn't enough that the program
            > works as designed, it has to be designed to do the right thing.

            You're right, of course.

            I guess I was thinking more in terms of "Fix your worst problems first",
            which is the context of the thread.

            In that context, if you're not doing much testing, it's probably easier
            to start with Unit Tests than Functional Tests (at least in my limited
            experience).

            Also, Unit Tests should ensure that "lack of sufficient testing" is no
            longer your worst problem. When "the system doesn't do exactly what the
            customer wants" becomes the biggest problem, that's when to start on
            Functional Tests (at least when incrementally adopting XP by solving
            your worst problem(s) first).

            Randy
            --
            Randy Coulman, M.Sc. Settler Agricultural Software
            RandyC@... 200 - 1911 Park St. Regina, SK S4N 2G5
            Senior Developer Phone: (306) 721-7949 Ext. 224
            Special Projects Fax: (306) 721-1981 http://www.settler.com
          • Steve Freeman
            ... From: To: Sent: Monday, May 01, 2000 9:34 PM Subject: Re: [XP] If coach is a programmer, where
            Message 5 of 6 , May 1, 2000
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              ----- Original Message -----
              From: <jkinghorn@...>
              To: <extremeprogramming@egroups.com>
              Sent: Monday, May 01, 2000 9:34 PM
              Subject: Re: [XP] If coach is a programmer, where do I fit in?
              > Our biggest problems right now are:
              > managing requirements (internal customer keeps changing them, but
              > wants them all in first release)
              > lack of sufficient testing
              > very little project visibility (no progress measurements)
              >
              > All of these problems mean we are consistently counting on the
              > heroics of the team.
              >
              > So, I guess my answer is to start with User Stories and Unit Tests?

              That sounds good, if you can get your users to join in a planning game. We had good experiences with this because it exposes the users to some of the gritty detail they usually ignore. It can make them much more carefully about what they really want.

              Depending on your codebase, you might want to start with Functional Tests, so you can do full regression testing and use new tests as a measure of progress.It depends on how hard it would be to set up something automated that talks to the model (i.e. don't go in through one of those UI tools).

              Steve
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