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Iterative Development Done Simply - Emily Lynema - Code4Lib 2010

Iterative Development Done Simply

  • Emily Lynema, North Carolina State University Libraries, emily_lynema@ncsu.edu

Code4Lib 2010 - Wednesday, February 24 - 09:15-09:35

With a small IT unit and a wide array of projects to support, requests for development from business stakeholders in the library can quickly spiral out of control. To help make sense of the chaos, increase the transparency of the IT "black box," and shorten time lag between requirements definition and functional releases, we have implemented a modified Agile/SCRUM methodology within the development group in the IT department at NCSU Libraries.

This presentation will provide a brief overview of the Agile methodology as an introduction to our simplified approach to iteratively handling multiple projects across a small team. This iterative approach allows us to regularly re-evaluate requested enhancements against institutional priorities and more accurately estimate timelines for specific units of functionality. The presentation will highlight how we approach each development cycle (from planning to estimating to re-aligning) as well as some of the actual tools and techniques we use to manage work (like JIRA and Greenhopper). It will identify some challenges faced in applying an established development methodology to a small team of multi-tasking developers, the outcomes we've seen, and the areas we'd like to continue improving. These types of iterative planning/development techniques could be adapted by even a single developer to help manage a chaotic workplace.

Slides in Powerpoint (2.15 MB)