Minimum Viable Product: A great concept. Develop just enough of a feature that can be used by clients and provide value while the teams add more functionality incrementally. Makes sense, doesn’t it?

Unfortunately there are people that see MVP as a big shinny box with a ribbon on it and not smaller boxes over a longer period of time. I feel it has roots from old Waterfall thinking. 

“Let’s go in big bang.”

“I want everything to work as I wanted.”

I would be great to get everything all at once in the time that it is requested. Unfortunately it never really worked out all that well when Waterfall was king. There is plenty of documentation out there that shows empirically that a lot of what was asked tends to go unused when deployed in a big bang fashion.

I won’t get into all the delays and painful meetings over change requests. I am twitching now just the thought of all I went through early in my career.

I am not sure why people want to have the big shinny box when there is actually more value in the small ones. We know what our customers want now, and unfortunately minds change over time. Especially if they have to wait a while for a product. 

Think of it this way. As a former personal trainer one of the things I told clients was to eat more small meals throughout the day and not 3 big meals. The body functions better when there is a constant flow of calories then a big influx. 

Clients are the same way. Give them small amounts of value and gather feedback to improve upon. That way there they get something they want faster and will continue to use it down the road. 


Revisiting User Story Maps

Software Process and Measurement

Story Map

Information Radiators are one of the most powerful concepts championed in agile as communication vehicles.  In many organizations, the use of information radiators has waxed over the past few years as more and more tools have locked data into monitors and tablet screens.  As electronic tools have replaced paper, putting radiators where people can see information, as they work or walk by, has been replaced by instant access (which is code for never looked at).  Product and sprint backlogs locked away into tools have the same problem as burndown charts, cycle time scatterplots or work in process aging charts that are in a tool and never looked at. Instead of locking backlogs away, create and use agile story maps to increase transparency and improve access to information. The goal of a Story Map is to present the big picture of a product or feature for everyone on the…

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Writing a book is hard and other things

As some of you know I have been wanting to write a book on QA, leadership and knowledge sharing. The intent of the book is to give my advice and knowledge to, not only those in the QA discipline, also those outside to understand what they have.

I have been planning this since my MBA, a few years ago, and I have been slacking a bit on it. Part of it is general life got in the way the other part was being a deer in headlights looking at the amount of work needed to get done. The initial intent was to write as many blog posts as  I can and then expand on them to get the book going. I do have a lot of material so far I just haven’t filtered through it all.

The other issue I have is what will go into the book. There are so many good books out there on QA and testing that I wanted to differentiate mine from the others. In trying to get there it is a lot harder than I thought. Don’t get me wrong I have a good plan in my head and I have a rough outline of the chapters I want to write. It is combining those thoughts into something tangible that I am running into problems.

My solution: go Scrum.  I need to break things down and focus on one thing at a time. If not it will take me another few years to get something done. I’m going to build on my outline and export everything  I have written so far and go from there.  

If you have any ideas of what I should write about, feel freen to let me know.

Now it looks like is having another good year. Last year I had way more visitors and views than previous years the blog has been around I was happy. Now it looks like it is projected to be another record year. As something that I was using to just gather my thoughts, I couldn’t have imagined how well it would be received.

One suggestion that was given to me was to get guest bloggers to post here. I am currently talking to a few people to do some posts in the next year. If you are interested let me know.

I have been reading a lot of books lately, so you will see those references as time passes. Should be fun.

That is it for now. Have a good day.