Re: Requirement Specs

Subject: Re: Requirement Specs
From: David Neeley <dbneeley -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Sat, 14 May 2005 14:13:48 -0500

I agree that modeling is an incredibly useful part of most project
development--but may not be necessary at the requirements stage.

Customers often want to specify what their needs are in more general
terms; a model is done in these cases pursuant to the customer
requirements as a proposed solution.

I have seen cases where the most practical way to pry their needs from
customers was to create dummy interface screens showing data fields
and the like. Many end users are not equipped to deal with the
architectural details, as it happens--but they can see and understand
user-facing screens that indicate how they would be doing their job.

For example, I was involved as a principal in the development of a
large facilities management system for Xerox some years ago. The
people who had to do the job were also the ones that had to review the
proposed system--yet they were completely untutored in software and
often not particularly good at using their computers to begin with.

Their managers were somewhat more technically skilled, but they tended
to have the uniform belief that the end users should sign off on the
proposed system before the managers would get involved.

Show a data model to a janitorial supervisor some time, Tony, and see
what you get back!

We found this method also to be helpful in determining all the
required data input and output needs and built our model and then the
system correspondingly. In the process, we determined quite a bit that
was being done that was unnecessary, too.



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Re: Requirement Specs: From: Tony Markos

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