I talk a lot about how having a spec is a critical component of software development. But how do you know that your spec is good, and that it has been developed enough? Simply put, how do you distinguish between a good spec and a spec that is lacking?
This problem had confounded me for a good bit of time, because it’s hard to create a rule surrounding spec development. Since most developers (myself included) are also generally bad at developing good specs, it becomes even more difficult to create such a rule. However, I heard a great adage from someone recently that I thought summed up how developers can see specs nearly perfectly.
Thursday, March 18th, 2010 @ 7:00 am |
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Categories: Opinion, Technology, Best Practices
Tags: spec, product design, 15 minute rule, design, application architecture
In the time that I have developed software, I don’t know that I’ve ever met a developer who got excited about writing specs for anything. In fact, most developers loathe writing specs, or developing schedules of any kind. It’s not that they’re lazy, or that they don’t want to be held accountable; most of the time it’s because developers prefer to express themselves via code, or because developers are afraid that if they set a schedule, and then reality doesn’t match up, they’ll be forced to produce sub-standard code. Neither of these is an ideal situation.
This is directly at odds with the business need of specifications and schedules. Businesses need schedules to know when products will be finished and schedule things like trade shows, product launches, and write contracts with clients who need or want a particular product. It’s not as if businesses want to push their developers to insanity by forcing them to schedule and then stick to it; more often than not thousands of dollars hinges on the schedule, and it simply must be met.
Wednesday, December 16th, 2009 @ 1:00 am |
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Categories: Best Practices, Technology, Business Management
Tags: spec, specification, scheduling, schedule writing, development