It's more than a house. It's an adventure.

Monday, October 02, 2006

More kudos on the project

My project at work has been moving along. The more I learn, the more I realize I don't understand. In fact, there's a fortune cookie fortune taped to a whiteboard in one room that sums it up quite well:

If you understand what you're doing, you aren't learning anything.

Following that, I must be learning near-infinite amounts.

Anyway, we've brought a consultant in to help get things back on track, help with documentation, planning, testing, and more. I met with him last week so he could find out where my portion of the project stands, what kind of documentation we have, and so on. He was pleasantly (and visibly) surprised when I told him I had all my documentation in Subversion and could recall any version from any point in time. He was genuinely happy to see that someone was approaching the requirements documentation and test cases the way that I was. Great. I feel pretty good now. I thought that was the end of it.

But it wasn't. In my meeting today with our developer and a member of IT management, the manager told us that a lot of the project documentation was in rough shape, but the consultant had specifically mentioned the documents that we've been maintaining for test cases, specs, etc. as being very well done. Some portions of the project have been done with little more than cocktail napkin sketches. The developer and I looked at each other, and he spoke first, saying that we were doing all the documentation at least as much for our own sanity as for the benefit of others. I have to agree. If we weren't being so detailed and rigorous about our specifications, we'd be going mad with confusion. We'd be completely lost without the history tracking and collaboration support which Subversion affords us.

Ultimately, my hope is that by setting a good example with this project, we can get version control and other tools more heavily used throughout the organization. But first I need to get through this project alive.


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