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Re: [scrumdevelopment] Potentially releasable software

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  • Mark Graybill
    ... Apples and eggplant. :) ... I cannot do anything officially, unfortunately. The test team has managers that are my peers. Regardless, there are some tests
    Message 1 of 20 , Nov 1, 2007
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      Ilja Preuss wrote:
       
      > I wonder how PatientKeeper is doing it.
       
      Apples and eggplant. :)
       
      > What are you planning to do to decrease this time?
       
      I cannot do anything officially, unfortunately.  The test team has managers that are my peers. Regardless, there are some tests that are hopelessly manual and tedious (see my previous post).
       
      It is however in my power to do sufficient testing on the development side that their side finds minimal issues.  Plus, we are trying to lead them toward their own change (from inside out).
       
      > What are the roadblocks to getting a releasable product in that time
      frame?
       
      The process to getting us ready to file, the testing required, and the defect fixing afterwork and all the tracework and documentation.
       
      > That probably means that receiving a deployment is in some way
      "painful"
      > to your customers. Where is that pain coming from, and how
      could you
      > mitigate it? What would be needed to make it a
      no-brainer?
       
      Good thinking.  Unfortunately, the pain lies in the market.  Special workflows, specific uses of the visualization, and specific DICOM characteristics make careful consideration for each case prudent.  We screw it up now.   So anything from video hardware upgrade requirements to clinical application bioalgorithms to image rendering to new DICOM enigmas, require great care in who gets what when.  It might work for most releases if every site had staging hardware so they can try it out before we screw up their workflow (and no hardware upgrades), but multiply that by about 4000.
       
      > I always thought that was the *definition* of a user story. Isn't
      it?
       
      That is what I was thinking.
       
      > Sure. "Done done".
       
      We have a checklist explicating what "done" means.
       
      > If you don't fully test the product, how do you never whether you are
      > really *done*?
       
      Good question...
       
      > What does "alpha contract" mean in this context, and how would it
      help?
       
      That is just paperwork.  The FDA requires it.  Until we file, customers have restrictions how they use it.
       
      Thanks for the post - it was thought provoking!
       
      Cheers!
      Mark
    • Scott Preece
      ... It ... The point of the Scrum approach is to deliver value to the customer. In many cases (maybe most cases) it s not feasible for every iteration to
      Message 2 of 20 , Nov 2, 2007
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        Ilja Preuss wrote:

        | Vikrama Dhiman wrote:
        |
        | > Lets examine it quite literally. "Potentially" shippable "software" -
        | > just because you have "potentially" shippable "software" does not mean
        | > you should but you can. If it needs to pass through some additional
        | > auditing/ test/ regulatory procedures - that should comprise activities
        | > which are additional to "main software". I know you can argue that till
        | > they pass this, you dont know if the code is shippable or not.
        |
        | Perhaps more importantly, it won't provide value until they pass it.
        It
        | is an investment sitting on the shelf waiting to produce value. Waste.
        ---

        The point of the Scrum approach is to deliver value to the customer. In
        many cases (maybe most cases) it's not feasible for every iteration to
        deliver a complete, shippable *product*, just shippable value. The
        value delivered may be ready to ship, but it may not constitute
        a complete product that makes sense for the customer to ship, or the
        customer may simply not want to ship that product at that time (not
        enough to satisfy her customers, too soon after the previous release,
        etc.). The customer determines when there is enough value to
        actually ship by setting priorities and the release plan. The customer
        could equally decide at some point to throw in the towel and sell the
        delivered value to another company.

        Depending on the nature of the certification testing process, it might
        make sense to treat that testing as a story that is scheduled for each
        release or it might make sense to treat it as something the
        customer
        does after the software is delivered.

        regards,
        scott
      • Roy Morien
        I wonder if we are all singing from the same hymn book when we talk about customers and shippable software . My understanding of the concept of customer
        Message 3 of 20 , Nov 2, 2007
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          I wonder if we are all singing from the same hymn book when we talk about 'customers' and 'shippable software'.
           
          My understanding of the concept of 'customer' in an iterative, agile environment does not just include the final user. Other developers whose software depends on your outcomes are also customers. So perhaps "shippable software" means software that is of value to the next 'customer', whoever that next customer may be; including other developers even on the same team.
           
          Do others understand this in the same way as I do? Does making the concept of 'customer' more inclusive in this way help the discussion about 'shippable software'.
           
          What it does do is essentially say that the outcome of every sprint could be 'shippable software', provided that software is useable 'as is' by the next in line 'customer'.
           
          Regards
          Roy Morien





          To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
          From: sepreece@...
          Date: Fri, 2 Nov 2007 08:40:53 -0700
          Subject: [scrumdevelopment] Re: Potentially releasable software

          Ilja Preuss wrote:

          | Vikrama Dhiman wrote:
          |
          | > Lets examine it quite literally. "Potentially" shippable "software" -
          | > just because you have "potentially" shippable "software" does not mean
          | > you should but you can. If it needs to pass through some additional
          | > auditing/ test/ regulatory procedures - that should comprise activities
          | > which are additional to "main software". I know you can argue that till
          | > they pass this, you dont know if the code is shippable or not.
          |
          | Perhaps more importantly, it won't provide value until they pass it.
          It
          | is an investment sitting on the shelf waiting to produce value. Waste.
          ---

          The point of the Scrum approach is to deliver value to the customer. In
          many cases (maybe most cases) it's not feasible for every iteration to
          deliver a complete, shippable *product*, just shippable value. The
          value delivered may be ready to ship, but it may not constitute
          a complete product that makes sense for the customer to ship, or the
          customer may simply not want to ship that product at that time (not
          enough to satisfy her customers, too soon after the previous release,
          etc.). The customer determines when there is enough value to
          actually ship by setting priorities and the release plan. The customer
          could equally decide at some point to throw in the towel and sell the
          delivered value to another company.

          Depending on the nature of the certification testing process, it might
          make sense to treat that testing as a story that is scheduled for each
          release or it might make sense to treat it as something the
          customer
          does after the software is delivered.

          regards,
          scott




          Find it at www.seek.com.au Your Future Starts Here. Dream it? Then be it!
        • Ilja Preuss
          The first time a feature produces real value is when an end user uses it in a production environment. The less delay there is between the development of a
          Message 4 of 20 , Nov 4, 2007
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            The first time a feature produces "real" value is when an end user uses
            it in a production environment. The less delay there is between the
            development of a feature and an end user using it, the less waste.

            Of course there often is also value in delivering the feature to someone
            in between. I think it is generally true that that is less value than
            actually delivering to an end user. The better we get at delivering more
            often to the end user, the better.

            Am I missing something?

            Cheers, Ilja

            Roy Morien wrote:
            > I wonder if we are all singing from the same hymn book when we talk
            > about 'customers' and 'shippable software'.
            >
            > My understanding of the concept of 'customer' in an iterative, agile
            > environment does not just include the final user. Other developers whose
            > software depends on your outcomes are also customers. So perhaps
            > "shippable software" means software that is of value to the next
            > 'customer', whoever that next customer may be; including other
            > developers even on the same team.
            >
            > Do others understand this in the same way as I do? Does making the
            > concept of 'customer' more inclusive in this way help the discussion
            > about 'shippable software'.
            >
            > What it does do is essentially say that the outcome of every sprint
            > could be 'shippable software', provided that software is useable 'as is'
            > by the next in line 'customer'.
            >
            > Regards
            > Roy Morien
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
            > To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
            > From: sepreece@...
            > Date: Fri, 2 Nov 2007 08:40:53 -0700
            > Subject: [scrumdevelopment] Re: Potentially releasable software
            >
            > Ilja Preuss wrote:
            >
            > | Vikrama Dhiman wrote:
            > |
            > | > Lets examine it quite literally. "Potentially" shippable
            > "software" -
            > | > just because you have "potentially" shippable "software" does
            > not mean
            > | > you should but you can. If it needs to pass through some additional
            > | > auditing/ test/ regulatory procedures - that should comprise
            > activities
            > | > which are additional to "main software". I know you can argue
            > that till
            > | > they pass this, you dont know if the code is shippable or not.
            > |
            > | Perhaps more importantly, it won't provide value until they pass it.
            > It
            > | is an investment sitting on the shelf waiting to produce value. Waste.
            > ---
            >
            > The point of the Scrum approach is to deliver value to the customer. In
            > many cases (maybe most cases) it's not feasible for every iteration to
            > deliver a complete, shippable *product*, just shippable value. The
            > value delivered may be ready to ship, but it may not constitute
            > a complete product that makes sense for the customer to ship, or the
            > customer may simply not want to ship that product at that time (not
            > enough to satisfy her customers, too soon after the previous release,
            > etc.). The customer determines when there is enough value to
            > actually ship by setting priorities and the release plan. The customer
            > could equally decide at some point to throw in the towel and sell the
            > delivered value to another company.
            >
            > Depending on the nature of the certification testing process, it might
            > make sense to treat that testing as a story that is scheduled for each
            > release or it might make sense to treat it as something the
            > customer
            > does after the software is delivered.
            >
            > regards,
            > scott
            >
            >
            >
            > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
            > Find it at www.seek.com.au Your Future Starts Here. Dream it? Then be
            > it!
            > <http://a.ninemsn.com.au/b.aspx?URL=http%3A%2F%2Fninemsn%2Eseek%2Ecom%2Eau%2F%3Ftracking%3Dsk%3Ahet%3Ask%3Anine%3A0%3Ahot%3Atext&_t=764565661&_r=OCT07_endtext_Future&_m=EXT>
            >
          • Michael James
            ... Also less risk. Building subsystems while deferring their integration and testing is asking for trouble. Potentially shippable means shippable within
            Message 5 of 20 , Nov 4, 2007
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              --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, Ilja Preuss <it@...> wrote:
              >
              > The first time a feature produces "real" value is when an end user uses
              > it in a production environment. The less delay there is between the
              > development of a feature and an end user using it, the less waste.

              Also less risk. Building subsystems while deferring their
              integration and testing is asking for trouble.

              "Potentially shippable" means shippable within one stabilization
              sprint, or less. I'd rather have a smaller number of potentially
              shippable features than a larger number of features that
              haven't been integrated with the end product.

              --mj
            • Dan Rawsthorne
              I don t think you are missing anything. However, it s not so simple. A deliverable feature may take several (in fact, many) stories to develop. The value we
              Message 6 of 20 , Nov 6, 2007
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                I don't think you are missing anything. However, it's not so simple. A
                deliverable feature may take several (in fact, many) stories to develop.
                The value we deliver with each story may be potentially releasable, but
                that does not mean that the feature is usable or understandable by a
                "real" user. Therefore, we often need to release to an intermediate user
                representative that can understand the difference. This could be a
                tester, an analyst, or some other developer -- whatever it takes to
                mitigate the risk of if not being the right thing.

                Dan Rawsthorne, PhD, CST
                Senior Coach, Danube Technologies
                dan@..., 425-269-8628



                Ilja Preuss wrote:
                >
                > The first time a feature produces "real" value is when an end user uses
                > it in a production environment. The less delay there is between the
                > development of a feature and an end user using it, the less waste.
                >
                > Of course there often is also value in delivering the feature to someone
                > in between. I think it is generally true that that is less value than
                > actually delivering to an end user. The better we get at delivering more
                > often to the end user, the better.
                >
                > Am I missing something?
                >
                > Cheers, Ilja
                >
                > Roy Morien wrote:
                > > I wonder if we are all singing from the same hymn book when we talk
                > > about 'customers' and 'shippable software'.
                > >
                > > My understanding of the concept of 'customer' in an iterative, agile
                > > environment does not just include the final user. Other developers
                > whose
                > > software depends on your outcomes are also customers. So perhaps
                > > "shippable software" means software that is of value to the next
                > > 'customer', whoever that next customer may be; including other
                > > developers even on the same team.
                > >
                > > Do others understand this in the same way as I do? Does making the
                > > concept of 'customer' more inclusive in this way help the discussion
                > > about 'shippable software'.
                > >
                > > What it does do is essentially say that the outcome of every sprint
                > > could be 'shippable software', provided that software is useable 'as
                > is'
                > > by the next in line 'customer'.
                > >
                > > Regards
                > > Roy Morien
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > > ----------------------------------------------------------
                > > To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
                > <mailto:scrumdevelopment%40yahoogroups.com>
                > > From: sepreece@... <mailto:sepreece%40yahoo.com>
                > > Date: Fri, 2 Nov 2007 08:40:53 -0700
                > > Subject: [scrumdevelopment] Re: Potentially releasable software
                > >
                > > Ilja Preuss wrote:
                > >
                > > | Vikrama Dhiman wrote:
                > > |
                > > | > Lets examine it quite literally. "Potentially" shippable
                > > "software" -
                > > | > just because you have "potentially" shippable "software" does
                > > not mean
                > > | > you should but you can. If it needs to pass through some additional
                > > | > auditing/ test/ regulatory procedures - that should comprise
                > > activities
                > > | > which are additional to "main software". I know you can argue
                > > that till
                > > | > they pass this, you dont know if the code is shippable or not.
                > > |
                > > | Perhaps more importantly, it won't provide value until they pass it.
                > > It
                > > | is an investment sitting on the shelf waiting to produce value. Waste.
                > > ---
                > >
                > > The point of the Scrum approach is to deliver value to the customer. In
                > > many cases (maybe most cases) it's not feasible for every iteration to
                > > deliver a complete, shippable *product*, just shippable value. The
                > > value delivered may be ready to ship, but it may not constitute
                > > a complete product that makes sense for the customer to ship, or the
                > > customer may simply not want to ship that product at that time (not
                > > enough to satisfy her customers, too soon after the previous release,
                > > etc.). The customer determines when there is enough value to
                > > actually ship by setting priorities and the release plan. The customer
                > > could equally decide at some point to throw in the towel and sell the
                > > delivered value to another company.
                > >
                > > Depending on the nature of the certification testing process, it might
                > > make sense to treat that testing as a story that is scheduled for each
                > > release or it might make sense to treat it as something the
                > > customer
                > > does after the software is delivered.
                > >
                > > regards,
                > > scott
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > > ----------------------------------------------------------
                > > Find it at www.seek.com.au Your Future Starts Here. Dream it? Then be
                > > it!
                > >
                > <http://a.ninemsn.com.au/b.aspx?URL=http%3A%2F%2Fninemsn%2Eseek%2Ecom%2Eau%2F%3Ftracking%3Dsk%3Ahet%3Ask%3Anine%3A0%3Ahot%3Atext&_t=764565661&_r=OCT07_endtext_Future&_m=EXT
                > <http://a.ninemsn.com.au/b.aspx?URL=http%3A%2F%2Fninemsn%2Eseek%2Ecom%2Eau%2F%3Ftracking%3Dsk%3Ahet%3Ask%3Anine%3A0%3Ahot%3Atext&_t=764565661&_r=OCT07_endtext_Future&_m=EXT>>
                >
                > >
                >
                >
              • jsfosdickcsp
                ... There are a lot of good comments in this thread already, but I have a couple thoughts one is more theoretical one is a practical answer to the original
                Message 7 of 20 , Nov 7, 2007
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                  --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "Mark Graybill" <Mark@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > A debate has brewed here regarding a statement someone
                  > made that we are not really doing Scrum because we do
                  > not have a releasable product at the end of every Sprint.

                  There are a lot of good comments in this thread already, but I have a
                  couple thoughts one is more theoretical one is a practical answer to
                  the original question.

                  Whenever I hear someone, regardless of who it is, say, "You're not
                  doing Scrum because...," my initial response is always to evaluate the
                  understanding of Scrum implicit in the statement. Scrum has extremely
                  few moving parts. That fact makes it extremely flexible, but likewise
                  open to many different interpretations and, consequently, many
                  different ways to approach the use of Scrum in practice. Anyone making
                  such pronouncements should be cautious. Conversely it is possible to
                  adhere to the "letter of the law but not the spirit". Ultimately our
                  goal is to do software better. A slavish devotion to a particular
                  dogma is counterproductive to that aim (and is in fact what has plague
                  PMI style project management for decades).

                  Now in terms of the question asked I would say that the terms are in
                  adequately stated. What is meant by "releaseable product"? It strikes
                  me that there are crucial modfiers missing from that term. It should
                  read, "potentially releaseable product increment." It is an absurd
                  standard to suggest, if this is what's really meant, to have a
                  releaseable product at the end of every sprint. The first couple of
                  sprints Scrum frontloads architecture and infrastructure types of
                  tasks onto the backlog. Those are unlikely to result in a releaseable
                  product in all but the simplest systems.

                  So then is it simple pedantry to distinguish between "releaseable
                  product" and "potentially releaseable product increment"? I would say
                  no. A releaseable product is, by definition, "ready for primetime".
                  That is to say its ready for end users on will do something useful.
                  That is an end goal of the software development enterprise but it is
                  not an intermediate step. Conversely a "potentially releaseable
                  product increment" is a small piece of the system that does something,
                  no matter how small that something is, and which has been as
                  thoroughly vetted as possible with appropriate levels of design,
                  coding, unit testing, system testing and MAYBE integration testing.
                  There is no requirement, in my opinion, that it must do something
                  useful to the target user by itself.

                  Jimi Fosdick CSP
                  blog: scrumblog.scrumpractitioner.com
                • Jeff Heinen
                  I ve found it useful to use the distinction of potentially releasable vs. sellable. Each sprint ends with a delivered product increment that is
                  Message 8 of 20 , Nov 7, 2007
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                    I’ve found it useful to use the distinction of “potentially releasable” vs. “sellable.”  Each sprint ends with a delivered product increment that is production-ready from a quality standpoint, and the PO could, at their discretion, choose to release it. That doesn’t mean that the product itself is sellable. The decision to actually release it would be contingent on the product having acquired enough business value to be “sellable.” The important point is that each sprint should end with the PO being able to make that choice.

                     

                    -Jeff H.

                     

                    From: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com [mailto:scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of jsfosdickcsp
                    Sent: Wednesday, November 07, 2007 10:14 AM
                    To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: [scrumdevelopment] Re: Potentially releasable software

                     

                    --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "Mark Graybill" <Mark@...> wrote:

                    >
                    > A debate has brewed here regarding a statement someone
                    > made that we are not really doing Scrum because we do
                    > not have a releasable product at the end of every Sprint.

                    There are a lot of good comments in this thread already, but I have a
                    couple thoughts one is more theoretical one is a practical answer to
                    the original question.

                    Whenever I hear someone, regardless of who it is, say, "You're not
                    doing Scrum because...," my initial response is always to evaluate the
                    understanding of Scrum implicit in the statement. Scrum has extremely
                    few moving parts. That fact makes it extremely flexible, but likewise
                    open to many different interpretations and, consequently, many
                    different ways to approach the use of Scrum in practice. Anyone making
                    such pronouncements should be cautious. Conversely it is possible to
                    adhere to the "letter of the law but not the spirit". Ultimately our
                    goal is to do software better. A slavish devotion to a particular
                    dogma is counterproductive to that aim (and is in fact what has plague
                    PMI style project management for decades).

                    Now in terms of the question asked I would say that the terms are in
                    adequately stated. What is meant by "releaseable product"? It strikes
                    me that there are crucial modfiers missing from that term. It should
                    read, "potentially releaseable product increment." It is an absurd
                    standard to suggest, if this is what's really meant, to have a
                    releaseable product at the end of every sprint. The first couple of
                    sprints Scrum frontloads architecture and infrastructure types of
                    tasks onto the backlog. Those are unlikely to result in a releaseable
                    product in all but the simplest systems.

                    So then is it simple pedantry to distinguish between "releaseable
                    product" and "potentially releaseable product increment"? I would say
                    no. A releaseable product is, by definition, "ready for primetime".
                    That is to say its ready for end users on will do something useful.
                    That is an end goal of the software development enterprise but it is
                    not an intermediate step. Conversely a "potentially releaseable
                    product increment" is a small piece of the system that does something,
                    no matter how small that something is, and which has been as
                    thoroughly vetted as possible with appropriate levels of design,
                    coding, unit testing, system testing and MAYBE integration testing.
                    There is no requirement, in my opinion, that it must do something
                    useful to the target user by itself.

                    Jimi Fosdick CSP
                    blog: scrumblog.scrumpractitioner.com

                  • Michael James
                    ... Yes, exactly. Every feature shown should be done/done/done , not just the smoke and mirrors of untested code. Whether it s sufficiently feature rich to
                    Message 9 of 20 , Nov 7, 2007
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                      --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "Jeff Heinen" <jheinen@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > I've found it useful to use the distinction of "potentially releasable"
                      > vs. "sellable."

                      Yes, exactly. Every feature shown should be "done/done/done", not
                      just the smoke and mirrors of untested code. Whether it's sufficiently
                      feature rich to release is a Product Owner call. Sometimes we need
                      a "stabilization Sprint" for polish, not deferred testing.

                      --mj
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