Ian is one of the true old hands of Java development. He has been working with Java since version 1.0a2, and actually wrote the first client-server Java application ever: a demo seating reservation system used for the Java product announcement at SunWorld in 1995. He is the author of Mastering Tomcat Development, published by J. Wiley and Sons, and has written articles for Java Developer’s Journal, Developer.com, and the Java Developer Connection. He served as Java Evangelist for Symantec Visual Cafe, and led the engineering team at Friendster as it grew from 120,000 users to 3 Million users in 6 months. At Pivotal Labs, Ian has displayed his versatility as an architect, project lead, engagement manager, and web technology expert. He is a frequent trainer and speaker on agile practices.
Company: Pivotal Labs
Presentations at BizConf
Enough DesignThursday, August 05, 2010 at 2:00 PM
A great agile design process is complementary to a great agile development process, one that produces great products that people love. In this talk we share what works and doesn’t work, from the 80+ Rails projects we’ve done at Pivotal. If you’ve struggled with integrating a waterfall design into your project, or just want to know what we’ve found works best, this talk is for you.
There is a tension in the agile world between the notion of ultimate flexibility that agile proposes, and the need for coherency and excellence that great design provides. This talk is intended to provide a framework to help yourself ask, as a designer or as a developer, “What is Enough Design?”, and to share our experience as to what has worked well in practice on our many projects at Pivotal Labs.
The right amount of design, and how far ahead that design needs to occur, varies significantly by task. Knowing what it is your building before development starts leads to a much more focused (i.e. better, faster, cheaper) product, but high fidelity, pixel level design work is best done with the designer pairing with the developer directly, rather than producing documentation that becomes ever more stale between writing and implementation. The investment in a 500 page PRD filled with pixel-perfect photoshop comps is one that tends to bring more rigidity than value to a product. Design ideas need to be tested as quickly as possible, so that the design process, like the development process, benefits from a short feedback loop and real user validation.
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