“I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.”

Douglas Adams, English humorist and science fiction novelist, perhaps
best known for his novel “The Hitch hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”.

You either get bogged down by the impending deadlines or you learn to enjoy them. Now that I am trying to enjoy the dooming deadline as it approaches me. I don’t know if it will make whooshing sound as it passes me.

As some one said, Schedules are made so that you can miss them. Making a schedule has been a mixed bag for me till now. Spot on if the I am in total control (read individual work) wayward for a group. There is more to programming.

Here I list the schedule made for WinWord at Microsoft for amusement purpose. The chart is adapted from Steve’s Rapid Development book.

Some lessons from WinWord schedule. Aggressive schedule prevented accurate planning. A 60-80 percentage was wishful thinking. The constant part of the schedule was firefighting.

This project experienced extremely high turnover. It had four development leads in 5 years, including two who quit the project because of schedule pressure and one who quit because of medical reason.

Because of schedule pressure, developers shortchanges their feature implementations, declaring them to be done even though they had low quality and in fact were incomplete. The result was that WinWord spent 12 months in Stabilization a period that had been expected to be take only 3 months!




2 Responses to “Deadlines….”

  1. 1 Karthi May 2, 2007 at 5:43 pm

    Gp. Managers play a mind game with their subordinates. It’s a bargain for both. Traditionally managers have a edge in this bargain based on their position and power. Workers(developers) are that good at bargaining and they end up accepting what is trust on them.

  2. 2 gp April 26, 2007 at 10:56 am

    Yes…interesting, when I read the bill gates book last time, it was amazing how the played with deadlines whitewashing the funders and customers with lavish launches and bud ridden products. But finally they prevailled.

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