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Concluding Thoughts

In general it is common for agile teams to perform some initial requirements modeling at the beginning of a project. The goal to identify the initial scope for your project—it may evolve later in the project—is explicitly included in the Inception phase. As you learned in this chapter you need to consider several critical issues as you tailor your strategy to reflect the situation that you face. This chapter described these issues, the options that you have available to you, and the trade-offs associated with each. We also described our preferred strategies, which are the following:

  • Level of initial detail. Do some lightweight requirements envisioning during Inception, with the exception of regulatory situations where detailed specifications are actually mandated, and explore the details later during construction in a just-in-time (JIT) manner.

  • Model types. Address each of the requirements views (usage, domain, process, user interface, and nonfunctional) via the simplest techniques and tools most appropriate for your situation. A common selection to do so is the combination of user stories, a high-level domain model (sketched), a high-level data flow diagram or use case diagram, sketches of several of the key screens or reports, and a list of nonfunctional constraints.

  • Modeling strategy. Keep your initial modeling sessions as informal as possible, supplementing with interviews when individual stakeholders aren’t available for group work.

  • Work item management strategy. Treat all work items—including requirements, reported defects, training requests, requests for assistance from other teams, and so on—as a prioritized stack.

  • Nonfunctional requirements (NFRs) strategy. Identify and maintain a list of NFRs and use them to drive identification of acceptance criteria for functional requirements.


  

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