RE: Do customers have implicit, unspecified right to documentatio n?

Subject: RE: Do customers have implicit, unspecified right to documentatio n?
From: Jim Shaeffer <jims -at- spsi -dot- com>
To: "Hart, Geoff" <Geoff-H -at- MTL -dot- FERIC -dot- CA>, TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 22 Mar 2000 09:00:48 -0500

Geoff is right (not a surprise).
and, surprise,
Geoff is not right.

In a contractual situation, the contract rules. Any assumption that
documentation is implicit in a contract is dangerous. It needs to be
explicit, otherwise the scope of work is impossible to determine and the
product is impossible to finish (the customer will want more, it's the
nature of customers to want it "free, perfect and now").
The contract should specify the deliverables. Otherwise you get the
guidance, "Oh, you know, admin guide, user's guide, c/s online help...Word
documents and stuff." as given in the original post. That's scary.
Our contrats specify different types and amonuts of deliverable
documentation and these contracts vary with all sorts of factors.

Jim Shaeffer
jims -at- spsi -dot- com

-----Original Message-----SNIPPED

Joe Sokohl wondered: <<Here's the situation: * Custom software for one
client. * Contract does not specify documentation of any sort...nor does
any project plan. * Customer now feels he should not have to pay extra for

Sometimes, remembering the golden rule really does put things in
perspective. Would _you_ want to receive any product without documentation?
--Geoff Hart, FERIC, Pointe-Claire, Quebec
geoff-h -at- mtl -dot- feric -dot- ca

Hofstadter's Law: The time and effort required to complete a project are
always more than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's

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