Wednesday, October 26, 2011

are we done yet?

The testing projects I've been involved lately have been "normal". Normal meaning, confusing, untestable and a lot of gotcha's. As I was writing my experience report for this one project, I suddenly remembered Adam Goucher's talk about how pirates do away with "finishing" a job.

Apparently, in the 1700s when pirates wanted to kill someone, they would hang the person in public -- dead --, take the body and bury it up to it's neck in the shore and wait for the high tide to come in so they can drown -- dead, dead -- and finally take the hanged, drowned body and put it up for display on a stick for all to see -- dead, dead, dead --. Very gruesome, I'm glad they don't do that anymore.

Just like those pirates, instead of dead, dead, dead, agile has this concept of done, done, done. Which simply means that a story/feature/project is ready for deployment to production. In my context, the ideal path should be;

  • The developer declares that his/her stuff is ready for testing, done.
  • The tester "completes" testing, done, done.
  • The stakeholder accepts the final product, done, done, done.

Coming from a development methodology that seem like the offspring of waterfail and fragile methodologies, the biggest challenge I see is involving everyone else in the team after the developer says, hey I'm done. There are two more parts after that, and the last two parts that define the completeness of any given project are just as important as the first one.
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