Friday, October 3, 2014
Userless User Stories
Central to the idea of the Agile development approach is to drive everything from "User Stories." The point of this is to get Users driving development. To get Users needs, desires, and requirements into the forefront of developer's attention.
Supposedly, TheHackerCIO has been working in "Agile" environments for several years. But he would love to actually use Agile! Just once. Is that asking too much?
Although they claim to be agile environments, the Pathological Behemoth corporation just forces the round-peg of Waterfall into the square-hole of Agile and let's the chips fall where they may.
For instance, I've seen "User Stories" in the Product Backlog which contained references to the project phase! There are no "phases" in an Agile development. But such is the state of the industry.
The latest outrage is User Stories where there is no actual user! These user stories start off "As a developer I want to ..." and end with so much BS about what non-functional requirement needs to be attained. For example, "As a perfomance engineer, I want to make sure that cache access is less than 10 milliseconds per request."
"As a developer ..."
"As a tester ..."
"As a deployment coordinator ..."
"As a production support resource ..."
Where the hell is the user?
If anyone doubts the stupidity of this kind of approach, I have a challenge for them! Take up this "user story" from my product backlog and start a sprint on it. Hell, I'll give you two weeks. Then we can look at your code.
On this same subject I ran across another blogger who objects. I'm not surprised, since anyone sane would object. But I point my readers to it here.