The Future As Seen By Me In 2010

Well looky here, things one has scanned in eh. (ignore the photo, that's some guy that made some accounting software, not sure what became of him ;) MIKE RIVERSDALE is fuming. The expensive headphones he bought in Sydney three weeks ago have just died. His first reaction is not to randomly spill expletives into his coffee, but to use his iPhone to vent his frustration to his Twitter con- tacts, under the moniker Miramar Mike. "I will also put, 'What should I do?' It's a conversation. I'm reaching out to the people following me." The council predicts hand-held digital devices such as smartphones will rule the world in 2040. They already rule the life of Mr Riversdale, whose company WaveAdept helps businesses adapt - their computing sys- tems to allow staff to work from anywhere - and with anyone. In order of fre- equency, he uses his iPhone to tweet (1136 followers; 8363 tweets since joining), e-mail, make phone calls and use online services, such as checki

User Stories vs Tasks

Let's dive in and say it out loud, a backlog is merely a list of user stories BUT it is not a list of tasks.

It's items within items within items.
On a typical backlog you will have, Initiatives with Epics holding User Stories containing Tasks and even Sub-tasks.

Initiatives and Epics we all mostly get correct, they are the big items spanning big(ish) timescales, say no less than 3 months.

Tasks and sub-tasks, we get those as well. We're all used to writing lists of things to do, "Get the bins in", "Get a haircut", "Write the weekly report". Things we need TO DO.

And there's User Stories, a weird in between thing that's not massive but, so you're telling me Mike, not a task. Why can't my Backlog be full of things to do, that's what lists are for, no?

Taking this straight from, User Stories - the best we can create, a doc of hints and tips from me at ... well, somewhere ;)

What is a User Story?

Summary: A user story is an informal, general explanation of a feature/deliverable written from the perspective of the user. It’s purpose is to articulate how a feature/deliverable will provide value to the customer.

A key component of agile is putting people first, and a user story puts end users at the centre of the conversation. These stories use non-technical language to provide context for the team and their efforts. After reading a user story, the team knows why they are building, what they're building, and what value it creates.

Note that "customers" don't have to be external end users in the traditional sense, they can also be internal customers or colleagues within your organisation who depend on your team.

Stories fit neatly into agile frameworks like Scrum and Kanban. In Scrum, user stories are added to sprints and “burned down” over the duration of the sprint. Kanban teams pull user stories into their backlog and run them through their workflow. It’s this work on user stories that help Scrum teams get better at estimation and sprint planning, leading to more accurate forecasting and greater agility. Thanks to stories, Kanban teams learn how to manage work-in-progress (WIP) and can further refine their workflows.

Still not sure why user stories aren’t tasks?

  1. User stories are the WHAT needs to be Done and WHY.
  2. The daily tasks (HOW, WHEN, WHERE, WHO) needed to get to a user story Done are not recorded as the User Story.
Captured just as he enters the water, Mike Riversdale dives into a FREEZING freshwater pool


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