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How Do You Manage Your Projects?

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Over the last few months I've asked a few general software development questions and have found your answers and comments helpful and interesting. Today, I've another general question for you to answer: how do you manage your development projects? This is a wide-ranging question, but I'd like to see how various individuals/organisations run their projects these days.

Are you a fan of agile? If so, which approach do you find works best in keeping track of tasks? For me, a kind of Kanban board/sprint approach seems to work. I like the visibility that the boards bring to the project.  I've been looking for a way of visualizing tasks online rather than using the plain old paper approach. Are there any that you would recommend?  Of course, I'm sure some people will find that standard Gantt chart schedules work well for them too. I just don't find them as friendly, and find that they don't get updated as frequently as the "leaner" solutions. Perhaps you use something totally different, or a tool that's integrated into the IDE?

Leave a comment here to let us know what your management solution is, and whether it's effective. 







mo sy replied on Mon, 2010/12/13 - 9:44am

Jira - GreenHopper plugin. Recently implemented and working well for small team in small organization. Nifty feature... Hooks in with Netbeans and updates ticket on svn commit.

Igor Laera replied on Mon, 2010/12/13 - 10:46am


I find that topic increasingly funny, since lots of projects I worked the last years used the "project planning" thing somewhere during the project just as a "post-reporting" tool. The "planning" bit went off board every time.

Tools like mylyn, MS Project, redmine, php-groupware and varying complex timetracker tools like CA Clarity or Open Source Kimai(.org) helped creating huge "data pits". But they don't take away the need reacting to this data and create an environment where (hard) decisions are possible - and effective.

In my experience the last years, you can't have "project planning" by any means if you are not willing to define project scope for a certain release (version) - and the balls to protect that scope until the end. I don't know any "scope holding software" besides Word or Excel :)

Because of the scope problem, Agile/Scrum never really worked out. It was more like "ad-hoc Agile, usually waterfall, fix-as-you-please".

I experienced also, that a good mind mapping tool (OSS: FreeMind) and the ability to print huge posters to consistently communicate the status is extremly valuable. Or, if you have to budget, just hang two large HD screens with the current bugtracking and feature completion status in the main hall.

Martijn Verburg replied on Tue, 2010/12/14 - 4:33am in response to: mo sy

+1 on the JIRA/Greenhopper combo - we also have a board with sticky notes to track the overall projects (the JIRA/Greenhopper deals wiith the 100's of tasks)

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