A couple years ago, I was helping brainstorm the design for a new e-mail feature. The idea was that whenever you’d receive a new e-mail, a little window would pop up on your computer screen alerting you to this fact, no matter what program you happened to be working in at the time. Now, no matter what you were doing, you could stop to check on the mail.
My main interest in such a feature was that there be an easy way to turn it off.
We live in an era of “all notification, all the time.” You’ve got mail. You’ve got an instant message. Your friend is now online. You have a meeting in 15 minutes. You have 3 voice mail messages. Britney Spears’s new album is now available (what OK button from hell did I click during some random install to agree to get notified of that??) If you’re not at your desk, we’ll route all this to your cell phone. If you’re not at your cell phone, well… somewhere a room full of engineers is working on that.
This is all widely viewed as a “good” thing but sometimes I wonder.
Bug Bash is a comic strip written and illustrated by Hans Bjordahl. Bug Bash is a comic strip about technology: managing technology, the business of technology. It's about project management and managing projects through the dull world of Rational Rose, use cases, and requirements. Functional requirements, user requirement, functional specifications, design specifications, call it what you want but it's still the bane of project managers. And when you're done with that, you can think about all the fun that comes with timelines, scheduling, estimates (PERT estimation anyone?) and resourcing until Gantt charts are coming out of your ears. Let's not forget the risk management in the software engineering life cycle. Maintaining the project is just as much fun, managing what was initially set out in requirements and trying to keep feature creep / scope creep in check with change management. If any of these words send nightmares to you, the project manager, then this site probably rings true with you. (Who Links Here?)