Archive for April, 2007
Politically Incorrect Advert Spoof :
Found via 8-Track Mind, of course.
My rough rule of thumb for projects is, no matter how much you overestimate to take care of the unknown, it always has three different points where you think you are 80% done.
The first time you think your project is 80% complete is when the initial design, development, and in-house testing is done. After this stage it’s just a simple matter of deploying it for real, right?
Well, what happens when you try to make the code etc work on real production equipment and datasets and communication links and interface with other production systems that were only simulated before? All sorts of unplanned unknowns crop up to ruin your week.
After this stage, we surely must be good to go and can throw the switch making it live on the net for the users to enjoy, right? We must surely be 80% done by now?
Not so fast. Whenever you let users at something new and wonderful … well.. users do what users do.
They manage to tickle the system in ways unthought of before and cause all sorts of breakage to occur. Breakage that sometimes requires an amount of effort to fix/workaround/redesign/reimplement that matches the amount of time spent on the previous phase or the phase before it.
OK, now are we 80% done? Surely all that’s left is just some minor tweaking over the lifetime of the product to add minor feature abc or interface with new system xyz, or what not?
Well… people may not agree with all of the above, but what is generally agreed to is maintenance over the lifetime of a software product can easily cost many many times the amount of effort it took to get to the first stable release.
Depressing, isn’t it?
If anybody thinks I’m joking about any of this, it’s all just a variation on the 80/20 rule
The 80/20 Rule means that in anything a few (20 percent) are vital and many(80 percent) are trivial. In Pareto’s case it meant 20 percent of the people owned 80 percent of the wealth. In Juran’s initial work he identified 20 percent of the defects causing 80 percent of the problems. Project Managers know that 20 percent of the work (the first 10 percent and the last 10 percent) consume 80 percent of your time and resources. You can apply the 80/20 Rule to almost anything, from the science of management to the physical world.
You know 20 percent of you stock takes up 80 percent of your warehouse space and that 80 percent of your stock comes from 20 percent of your suppliers. Also 80 percent of your sales will come from 20 percent of your sales staff. 20 percent of your staff will cause 80 percent of your problems, but another 20 percent of your staff will provide 80 percent of your production. It works both ways.
SÃO PAULO: Imagine a modern metropolis with no outdoor advertising: no billboards, no flashing neon signs, no electronic panels with messages crawling along the bottom.
Come the new year, this city of 11 million, overwhelmed by what the authorities call visual pollution, plans to press the “delete all” button and offer its residents unimpeded views of their surroundings.
Popular reaction has largely been supportive.
Advertising companies generally acknowledge that abuses of public space have occurred and that a majority of the city’s estimated 13,000 outdoor billboards have been installed illegally
Hmm, this is something most cities could try. I’d rather see some nice (non-advertising) murals on the sides of some buildings than a proliferation of big ugly billboards on structures built ever higher to stand out from the rest.
We’re not quite as overrun with billboards as Silicon Valley or Toronto even, and probably very few “illegal” installations exist, but still.. I’d like to see a reduction of this stuff (Example below) in Calgary :