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Re: [epf-dev] Minutes from EPF call Thursday, Feb 14, 8:00AM PST

does it work for you ?
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Saturday, February 16, 2013 3:15 AM
Subject: [epf-dev] Minutes from EPF call Thursday, Feb 14, 8:00AM PST


Bruce MacIsaac
Bob Palank
Razvan Gliga

Discussed Plans/ideas for next release
       IBM has started working on some updates to the Scrum library
               - Updating based on latest Scrum practice
               - Incorporating the Scrum library with the EPF Practices library so that Scrum can be mixed and matched with other practices.

Bob Palank suggested he may contribute content on Feature Driven Development.

2. Discussed Essence submission - goes to an OMG vote in March.  Eclipse is registered to vote.  How does the EPF community want to vote?

 Bruce summarized as follows:
A. There has been work on a user's guide, however, it is far from complete.
Basically it has been outlined.

B. There has been work on a mapping to SPEM, but it is far from adequate.
 I've included my review of the work done so far in a postscript below.

Bob suggested that a vote in favor of Essence would be a good show of support for this effort.

Action on Bruce to solicit additional EPF community feedback.

3. EPF Webinars

       Bruce proposed to merge this series with the upcoming RMC webinar series planned by IBM and make it one co-hosted series.


Bruce MacIsaac
EPF Project Lead
408-250-3037 (cell)

Review of ESSENCE SPEM mapping:

My general feedback on the introductory material is that there is still too much sales literature that doesn't belong in a standard.
If we want to stick to the "essence" of things, here's what it boils down to:

1. Essence defines a standard kernel that allows you express progress and health attributes of a team.

Standardizing on such a kernel helps teams to follow different practices, while still expressing progress and health in common terms.

The kernel includes guidance on how to evaluate health and progress - and so using the kernel is effectively a "practice".

2. Teams that don't want to use the Essence kernel or follow this practice for evaluating health and progress (perhaps they have alternative ways to do this)

might be able to use the Essence language, but there would be no benefit over using SPEM.

Teams following non-Essence-based processes with roles, work breakdown structures, templates, and checklists will find that SPEM provides better out-of-the-box


3. SPEM is more mature (having been around longer), which provides benefits such as:

- the mapping of SPEM to tools like Microsoft Project and Rational Team Concert is well understood.

- SPEM is supported by open source tools and practices content

- commercial tools provide additional features and tool integrations

- large volume of practices, such as guidance and mappings for compliance to various standards such as CMMi, DO178c, ISO26262, etc.

4. Teams with a significant investment in SPEM-based processes can explore using Essence concepts, since Essence alphas can

be expressed as work products or work product slots, and links can be established to express desired relationships and navigation.  To go further into leveraging Essence requires either means abandoning SPEM, extending SPEM, or a transformation from SPEM to Essence (likely with extensions to Essence being required if no information loss is to occur).

5. I appreciate that a lot of work has gone into the section that deals with the specific mappings.

This section needs a lot of work to be complete, and to avoid confusing the reader.

The best place to start a SPEM mapping is to explain how plug-ins, packages, configurations, and views, with a few basic elements, such as a set of roles, could be mapped.

Here is the simplest example I can think of to demonstrate a SPEM/Essence mapping:

Plugin A - has 2 roles, team lead and developer, and a view (custom category) that lists these roles.

Plugin B - has an additional role, product owner, and contributes this role to the view.

There are 2 configurations, A and AB, which include the respective plug-ins suggested by their names.

I cannot use the proposed mapping for even this simplest of SPEM processes, since plug-ins, configurations, contribution, and views/custom categories aren't covered.

6. Ultimately the mapping should get down to the nuts and bolts of each language element to be mapped, but again, the mapping should start with simple things.

If I have a simple SPEM-documented process, such as a version of Scrum, documented as some roles, tasks, work products, and a couple of WBSs

(capability patterns) for a "Development Sprint" and a "Release Sprint" (which includes rollout activities), how would that be mapped?

Once we understand how these simple examples map, we can talk about more complex aspects of SPEM.

It would be good to understand if such a migrated process is usable, or is not usable without some minimum wiring into the Essence kernel.

What is the minimum wiring required?

7. I find this statement confusing:

"TaskDefinition may need to be split, or merged with others, to serve as a suitable Activity in Essence."

Why would that be the case?

8.  I will continue to go through the detailed mapping suggestions.  I appreciate the work that's gone into this, but it's not yet close to where it needs to be.

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