I spent another enjoyable day at XPday5 yesterday. As always, it was great to meet up with old friends and colleagues, although I never seemed to have the time to get into real conversation with anyone!
I was there to run a new version of the jidoka session, this time including games and a working group. The new format was great fun, and I’ll be running it again at SPA2006 next spring.
My main highlight of the day was Tom Gilb‘s introduction to ‘quantifying any quality.’ This was a compressed introduction to the Evo method’s approach to requirements, in which projects set numeric goals for everything from usability to maintainability to innovation. I was stunned by this approach, and spent some time over lunch quizzing Tom further. Tom’s thesis is that most of what we call “stories” or “requirements” are actually solutions to deeper business and user needs. Tom ferrets out those underlying needs, quantifies them, and then leaves the development team to decide how best to meet them. This chimes well with some of my experiences, so I’ve vowed to study Evo in detail during the next few months.