Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Why open source is so hard to use.
1.) Open source projects tend to be agile; do what's needed.
2.) If your project generates revenue, you do what makes you money.
3.) Once customers know how it works, why would they pay to make it easier (unless they are in a position to have to train others.)
Each month we plan a scrum sprint, each month I tell myself to tell the product owner to select usability related items from the backlog, and each time I talk myself out of it because __this month__ there is revenue directly tied to these new features.
How does one go about addressing usability in an open source, scrum model? Should some percentage of sprint points be dedicated to usability concerns each month? We did this once and it seemed to work, but it was very hard for product owner to swallow and would be very hard for him to swallow every knowing he'd have to do it every month.
It does force a developer to be fairly creative about how to increase usability on a tight budget, which can be fun.