Re: Software methodology question

Subject: Re: Software methodology question
From: Scott Turner <sturner -at- airmail -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2001 12:56:51 -0500

Hi gang. My company is trying to rein in the chaos of our current software
development methods (let's just say it's casual) and impose some order. We
are meeting tomorrow to discuss SCRUM, some methodology my boss found on
the web ( Has anyone out there used this method?
Does it work? What do you like and dislike about it? And to keep that
tech comm connection, has it made your life harder or easier as the tech
writer? I am the lone tech writer (been doing this for 13 years) and all
we deliver to the client is online help. So I am in the midst of writing
online help for the version in use now (using Lotus Notes, don't even get
me started on that) and we have no specs. I've worked in chaos for
years,so that isn't a problem. Our next software delivery is a big change
and everything will be on the web. So, we are trying to rein in the chaos
and be much more organized for this delivery. Any feedback on SCRUM would
be appreciated. Any attempts at using an actual methodology will be met
with great resistance by the developers, so if you found that SCRUM eases
the pain, please let me know.


Without going into detail, either with examples or with the process detailed by the company you cited, this appears to be an iterative development process, which has many good features over the traditional waterfall process.

Two main drawbacks.

1. It will be difficult to implement cold without training and development of process in your company.

2. No process works if there is no discipline in the company.

Of all, the second is the more important, since most methods will work if they are applied.

I regret to tell you that I worked for a company that tried to implement ISO processes into their development process, but because they couldn't plan, hold to a plan, or follow the processes they had put into place, we were never on time, with a product that worked. Ever.

If you have one person who has hire and fire capability, is dedicated to implementing the process, and inforcing it mercilessly, you have a chance.

Otherwise, you will get some good out it, but you will have a lot of frustration as well.

For that matter, if your company wants to spend the bucks, they can get process and software from Rational. It's basically the same concepts.



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