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80% done

Bob Martin:
"[...] They begin with a date. Let's not kid ourselves, all projects start with a date -- probaly before they have requirements -- probably before they have a name. An endless stream of requirements follows. A project plan is put together, and then reformed and reformed until it meets the date. Then the project is launched, and from a management point of view it goes dark.
Managers ask "How's that project going?" The answer: "Pretty good." If you want a more detailed answer it will be something like this:
  • (10% in) "We're currently building data models. We're about 80% done with them.
  • (20% in) "We're currently building use-case models. We're about 80% done with them.
  • (40% in) "We're currently building class models. We're about 80% done with them.
  • (60% in) "We're currently building sequence design models. We're about 80% done with them.
  • (80% in) "We're implementing the necessary infrastructure and architecture components. Were about 80% done with that."
  • (90% in) "We're starting to implement the main features. They'll be a snap because we've got all the design and architecture built. We're going to make the deadline."
  • (110% in) "We're about 80% done with all the features."
  • (120% in) "We're about 80% done with all the features."
  • (130% in) "We're about 80% done with all the features."
  • Repeat until complete or cancelled.
I realize that this sounds flippant -- and it is -- but it also strikes too close to the truth for a vast number of projects. No real data comes out of the project, and so there is no way to make any management decisions. Projects that produce no data cannot be managed. Period. [...] "

October 17, 2003 12:25 PM

Comments

Ted
(October 20, 2003 11:18 PM #)

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