Beyond the buzz

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Garbage In, Garbage Out

This is painful to watch if you’ve been on the receiving end of a project briefing that changes with each meeting.

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Filed under: Random

What’s “worthy” of being social networked?

“No one should submit themselves to the indignity of creating a user profile and friend connections based on cola or cat litter.”

Amen.

At the risk of being lynched or perhaps simply whacked, I am finally coming out of the closet on this issue. I’ve often had trouble getting some of the online communities I see sprouting up. Never mind something as grandiose as a social network, I even have a hard time understanding the value of building e-mail lists or perhaps even web sites for products with such fleeting consumer connections as salad kits or gum.

Having said that, what is worthy of being social-networked? On a related note, has everyone gone stark raving mad trying to social network just about everything within reach?

Read the full story at readwriteweb.com

Filed under: Social Networking

Friday Funny #1

OK…I never intended for this blog to be about anything other than a collection of my answers to client FAQ, but this Wired article about the 5 stupidest iPhone 3G accessories is a must-share…

http://blog.wired.com/gadgets/2008/07/the-five-stupid.html

Filed under: Random

Are methodologies scalable?

Requirements gathering is one of those steps in any project that can’t be missed. Whether it’s conducted vigorously and methodically, haphazardly and unconscious, it’s done. It doesn’t matter whether you’re ordering a hamburger at Harveys or a web site build: the person taking your order needs to gather your requirements.

When you go to Harveys, you don’t just say you want a hamburger; the person taking your order will want to know if you want a classic or whatever, the person making your burger will want to know what kind of toppings you want. You could be remiss and say “just give me the toppings most people get”; not a problem, unless you really detest ketchup, which is what most people get on their burger.

Recently, I was discussing with a colleague the issue of requirements gathering methologies. In our experience, SMB’s and micro-businesses, in particular, tend to work within very short temporal cycles. They can also have pretty short fuses and regard methodical questioning and any information probing to be, at best, extemporizing tactics and, at worst, unresponsiveness. How often have you been challenged with, “Why do you need to know so much? Why are you asking all these questions? I just want a ballpark, an estimate. I’m just a small business and don’t have the time to be talking about this. I just need to get it done.”

So we came to the tentative conclusion that enterprise-level business methologies don’t necessarily scale down to the micro-business and even SMB (small to medium businesses) level. Is this really true? Do we need to develop a completely different style of requirements gathering for different classes of clients?

Filed under: Random, Web Development