Pain is temporary, failure lasts forever

Lean, agile living for the running mother of Peter

2007-11-16

Back to basics

Working with two different platforms (Windows and Mobile client) and two modes (Online & Offline) creates two dimensions to every problem: let's say create new contact. Is it offline or online? And which clients are we going to use? As a requirements analyst, it is easy to overlook these dimensions when creating storyboards and it's even easier for a developer to choose one track. If he sees the storyboard for "Create new contact" and implements that in the Windows application, designing for the online mode, has he forfilled the task. Well, yes. And no. And sometimes. It depends on how the storyboard looks. The problem with user stories in our case that a user story can read:
"An offline windows user can create a new customer".
And this does not even take personas into account. So, after some long discussions, we decided that we do need a list of user stories in the short form "Create new contact" and a list of scenarios where we connect the user stories to the two dimensions of mode and client. So, I made an Access file with a bunch of tables and started building up my list. When I looked up, I said: hey this looks a lot like the use case list I created after reading Mike Cohn's book on Use cases. So, we're back. So, what is my tip for a use case list:

Figure out which dimensions are the most critical. For us it's client and mode, not personas

First create the list of use cases. We just add the use case and keywords (the latter you can select many.








Then create a scenario list adding the dimensions to the use cases. In our cases, I also added the possibility to connect new keywords, how the thing is to be tested and if it has been implemented yet









What I also got was a test list for the manual testers so they can see which features has been added.

When I was finished, I uploaded the lists to our Sharepoint site and will now connect this to the sprint backlog so we keep track of which use cases we're working with.

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