Browsing the blog archives for December, 2014.

Tiger cartoon: Give the Orchestra an A

Uncategorized / Misc

My mom gave this to me many years ago. I’ve had it in a box ever since.

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Agile story points: Eddie’s Rule of Halves

Uncategorized / Misc

In my job we use Agile / Scrum to manage our projects. One of my petty annoyances is the inability to use Story Points in a meaningful way. This is annoying to me because it should be one of the easiest to use.

Story Points are supposed to be all about estimating very generally how much effort it will take to do something.  Its purpose is to look into the future and make an educated guess.  It recognizes that (a) we can’t accurately predict the future; (b) we’ll get a better estimate later; (c) we don’t need to know more detail now; (d) anyway, we ought to be able to know whether the thing is Small, Medium, Large, or Gargantuan.

However, technical people don’t like definitions that are intentionally unspecific.  They want to use Numbers … and when do they happily begin doing Math to the numbers and lie to themselves, thinking they are being Precise … when in reality their information is vague.

So I have a proposal…  Eddie’s Rule of Halves.  These kind of look like they are Numbers but are also Vague.  Still, they convey the sense of how much effort is involved:

  • Half a Day
  • Half a Week
  • Half a Month  (gee, that looks a lot like a two-week Sprint….  Hmmmm….)
  • Half a Year
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