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RE: Completeness definition

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  • David A Barrett
    ... I think, just like the pigs and chickens thing (which is only about who gets to speak in a daily scrum), people lose track of what the Scrum rule about
    Message 1 of 15 , Mar 4, 2005
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      >Sure, the work can be chunked into 30
      >day sprints, and we can build the application with localized testing for
      >the module we just completed, but it can't go to production until
      >everything's done.

      I think, just like the "pigs and chickens" thing (which is only about who
      gets to speak in a daily scrum), people lose track of what the Scrum "rule"
      about "potentially implementable" features is all about.

      There isn't any rule that your entire product has to be deployable at the
      end of every Sprint. IMHO, the rule about making each Sprint Backlog item
      a "potentially implementable" feature has two purposes:

      1. To keep the team focused on "functionality". Creating an artifact, or
      investigating an approach is not a valid SB item. You need something that
      you can demo to the user at the end and show forward movement on

      2. To keep the team focused on finishing. Starting something doesn't
      count. Finishing it does. Size things so that they can be completed, even
      if this means that the incremental gain in functionality is so small as to
      be useless to the end user as a practical matter.

      I don't see any conflict here with scheduling releases to occur some
      quantity of Sprints in the future, nor do I see any conflict with dealing
      with necessary pre-release activities. I don't think you need to be filled
      with angst because some feature that you've developed can't be "released"
      until the whole system has been stress tested for 2 weeks in a lab. The
      rules do make you think about what you are doing, and potentially knock out
      a whole pantload of activities as valid SB items. For instance:

      1. Documentation
      2. UAT
      3. Unit Testing
      4. User Training
      5. Investigation
      6. Bug fixing (as an open-ended, general activity)

      Wouldn't ordinarily qualify. Instead if a feature needs those items
      completed in order to be considered "potentially implementable", then they
      should be included in the SB item for the development of that feature.
      Even here, though, you may need to make exceptions. For instance, you may
      have a separate documentation department, who work on their own schedule
      and need to see a final version of the product before they will update
      documention. The spirit of the thing is the most important: Only take on
      as much stuff as you can finish, and be clear about what "finishing" means.

      Dave Barrett,
      Lawyers' Professional Indemnity Company
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