Blog Post Review – Agile Requirements: Not an Oxymoron

I was reading an interesting blog post about requirements within Agile processes.  It’s a topic I have been discussing with my team as we struggle to find the appropriate balance of process and agility.

The big “a ha” for me was the concept of “done” requirements.  The author has written about this in a book, so I will be digging in further to further suggest process changes.  We use a “done” criteria in our user stories and it seems there are parallels to this concept.  This would give the developers more insight into the state of the requirement which would allow them to commit to implementing the feature.

It also implies that there is a need to have dedicated business analysis resources on Agile teams.  We do have this role on the team, but it has not yet morphed into the dynamic role it needs to be.  We’ll keep working on it.  A few years ago an Agile Business Analyst was indeed an oxymoron in the Agile community, I think, because we didn’t understand that requirements (in the form of user stories) are still needed.

Thanks to Ellen Gottesdiener, the author of the post.  Very enlightening, indeed.  I feel like what I have been saying to my team for the last 3 years was correct.


Software Quality Assurance and Social Media — Is There A Connection?

A few months ago I posed the question to a vendor of mine — what do social media technologies have to do with software quality assurance?  Does it even matter?  I still think they are or should be connected but I don’t know exactly how.  So, I am creating this post to hopefully generate some discussion and more ideas.

Here are some ideas I had:

1.  Use microblogging technology (e.g. Twitter) internally within the dev team to quickly communicate what is happening real-time.

2.  Could a test plan be a Wiki page rather than a document?  I suspect this wouldn’t work in a regulated environment, but maybe not?

3.  Use microblogging to ask quick questions to anyone on the team — might reduce email clutter?

4.  Analyze social media traffic to determine how the customers are using the product being tested.  Could this influence the direction of the test plan?

5.  Microblogging with linking to point to specific issues in the team system (e.g. TFS) needing attention – maybe a defect, or a user story?

6.  Other indirect uses: development team morale, searching microblogs for internal trends (create some retrospective ideas?), etc.

What connections do you see?  Can’t wait to uncover some ideas!