Before you spend those technology dollars

Before you make a significant investment in a technology project, you should answer the following questions. The first question: How does investing in this help the company’s bottom line? In other words, does this project save expenses, or does it help increase revenue without adding significant expense? As obvious as these questions are, they are often overlooked when people are trying to justify investing in the next great technology thing. Read more of this post


SCRUM in Under 10 Minutes (HD) by @hamids

Are you’re looking to learn the SCRUM software development methodology in less than 10 minutes? By the end of this fast-paced video, you’ll know about burn-down charts, team roles, product backlogs, sprints, daily scrum… Read more of this post

Scrumy – A very simple agile project management site geared to scrum projects. I still prefer mingle, but the video is funny.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Scrumy“, posted with vodpod


More Mingle Chart Modifications

As much as I like Mingle…except for its speed…there are a couple of things that have bothered me for a while: the straight lines to infinity when a chart goes beyond current data points and hard coding dates as labels in charts. It turns out that there are a couple of easy resolutions to both problems.

If your burn down chart has parallel horizontal lines running off the chart to the right, simply remove the “x-labels-end” tag and save the chart. Your new chart will end at the most recent data point.

Onto the second issue. Instead of hard coding dates into your charts, causing them to modified every time you need to change a date, use a project variable. Since my charts are primarily based on release, I created a date project variable  called “Release Start” that I use on the x axis: x-labels-start: (Release Start). Now, I only have to go to one place within my project to maintain the release start date.

Hope this helps with your Mingle adventures. For more Mingle chart modifications see this post and this one.

Simple Mingle Overview Charts: Project Backlog

One of the items I  track in an Agile project is what my team refers to as “Project Backlog.” The Project Backlog contains stories that have yet to be accepted and assigned to a sprint or release. For purposes of estimating project end dates, I keep a running tab on the total stories in the Project Backlog at any given time.

In Mingle, I’ve developed the following tracking chart:

Here’s the code to create this chart:

cumulative: true
x-labels-start: 04/01/09
x-labels-end: 05/30/09
x-labels-step: 7
x-title: Date
y-title: Stories
chart-width: 400
plot-width:  200
three-d: false
chart-type: line
– color: orange
data: SELECT  ‘Added On’, COUNT(*) Where type = Story AND  ‘Planning – Release’ IS NULL and ‘Planning – Sprint’ IS NULL and ‘Added On’ <= TODAY and Status != ‘On Hold’ and Status != ‘Deleted’
type: line
line-width: 2
trend: false

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