Feature Injection Comics

by Amr Elssamadisy on May 15, 2009 |

Chris Matts, well known in the Agile community for his work in bringing option theory to software development, has been writing about feature injection - a form of business requirements and analysis - in comic-book format on the Agile Journal.  Chris's comic-book format is an excellent story-telling technique that makes complex ideas accessible to the reader.

In episode 1 Chris examines how information flows in a typical software development cycle and notes how when defects are found, they interrupt the software development team's progress.  So they have to stop some of what they are doing and refocus their work to address the defects.   This reduces their capacity to continue adding new features.  The information arrives too late, after the software has already been built and therefore the software must be changed.  But, by changing when the information arrives, the problem can be avoided.

This leads us to episode 2 where Chris digs in deeper and shows how analysis can be done - and seemingly independent of development - by modeling from examples.  He shows how modeling, in turn, can help generate more examples.  Feature injection can be done iteratively and how, because we start with the expected output or vision, which is finite, we will not get stuck in analysis paralysis.  Analysis is rarely discussed in the Agile story beyond 'write user stories' which is increasingly becoming a visible weak point in Agile.  Below is the introductory page from episode 2 that gives you a taste of how this information is presented:

Feature Injection is a significant push towards addressing the very important role of analysis in Agile software development and Chris' comics are a solid introduction to the topic.

You can read the full comics online on  Agile Journal: episode 1 and episode 2.


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Comic format by Nick Dunlavey

The comic format may be easy to read, but I'm not convinced it makes it easier to understand. Since going to to the seminar at SkillsMatter from Chris (Anthony) last night I've read all five comics twice, and I STILL don't understand what points Chris is trying to communicate - I still don't get what the distinguishing attributes of Feature Injection are.

Used font and format! by Essam Badawi

The idea of using comic drawing is interesting, but the given drawing with caps font is not easy to read and follow..

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