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12
DEC
2016

Yesterday’s Weather: An Extreme Programming Planning Technique Using Story Points

Yesterday’s Weather is an Extreme Programming planning technique used to estimate the capacity of a Team based on their past performance. Yesterday’s Weather is a guide to help Teams neither under commit nor overcommit to a set of Product Backlog items during Sprint...
28
NOV
2016

Estimating the Size of Scrum User Stories

In Scrum, the owner of the estimates is very clear.  Only the people who do the work, i.e., the Team, have the right to offer estimates for the Product Backlog and Sprint Backlog items.  However, like many things in Scrum, the framework leaves it up to each Team to decide on what...
13
OCT
2015

A Visual Control for the Masses – A Task Board

One of the greatest challenges to trust, collaboration and self-organization in the workplace is visibility.  This is because most of software development is intellectual work without physical representation.  We take complex ideas on what a software product should do and express...
30
JAN
2015

Can the Sprint Goal Be Altered? Yes!

The title of this post is somewhat of a contradiction, but I am OK with contradicting myself from time-to-time.  On the Certified ScrumMaster’s LinkedIn group there was an interesting conversation about what should a Team do when they have finished all their work before the...
18
NOV
2013

No Points for Bugs

To start this post, I want to share a bit of dialogue between two characters in the 1987 movie The Princess Bride after their repeated attempts to foil the main character (in this case, after cutting a rope he was climbing).  This esoteric reference  demonstrates how completely...
04
NOV
2013

Scheer’s Law – An Observation Regarding Metrics

When I worked as an internal Scrum consultant for a San Diego biotech, I had the pleasure of working with one of the most talented and creative programmers I have ever met – Tim Scheer.  Tim was part of our team Scrum transformation team and he was the person on our team...
28
AUG
2013

What Is the Purpose of a Sprint Backlog?

I came across this question\comment on the LinkedIn ScrumMasters group the other day asking about Burndown Charts and management analysis. “I send out Burndown Charts daily and have been questioned by upper managent as to why we see fluctuations, up or down to the ideal...
06
NOV
2012

Estimation is Part of Scrum…and Mostly Irrelevant

In the past month, there has been a great deal of discussion around estimation.  First, it began with Joshua Kerievsky and his article.  Later, Tobias Mayer shared his perspective.  I even heard recently that Mike Cohnis diminishing the importance of estimation.  I think Ward...
08
NOV
2010

Reading a Release Burndown Chart

In Scrum, we use a lot of easy-to-understand tools to communicate status.  A very common tool is a burndown chart.  In this diagram, I am showing a sample Release Burndown chart for a Team with eight Sprints in their release and will talk about how this is commonly used on a...
23
SEP
2009

I Really Hate CMMI

I came across a question on a usergroup asking the following (it’s condensed): “In our projects we maintain product backlog and do high level estimates in story points. Then when we actually start the iteration we do estimates in the sprint planning meeting in story...
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