WMF product development process/Proposal/2015-10-21

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Meeting Agenda:

  1. Review and confirm or change goals for next phase of SPDPP
    1. Get some teams to make a list of milestones for the quarter (in parallel with existing MPL and Q2 reporting)
    2. Build out those milestones from titles to fully fleshed out prototypes, and experiment with tools
    3. start prototyping a milestone library
  2. Figure out how to proceed, who's involved, what our output and intermediate outputs look like.
    1. which teams
    2. Who else
    3. technologies to try
    4. milestones for SPDPP

how often do we want to update during Q2?[edit]

  • Monthly? No other suggestions

How much work is this?[edit]

  • breaking out Goals into milestones
  • creating criteria for milestones
  • Joel to make an estimate of total hours required

Expected "bundles" of milestones[edit]

  • iteratate to hit a milestone
  • ship a product
  • support a service

What are the benefits to participants ?[edit]

  1. learn and define the process in anticipation of a theoretical future rollout
  2. get structure for self-checking progress during the quarter
  3. consulting attention - can figure out/discover helpful stuff thanks to focus

Levels of participation[edit]

  1. one interview to build a skeleton list of milestones. 1 hr.
  2. one interview, plus followup interviews monthly. 4 hrs
  3. "Full".
    1. Create list of milestones
    2. develop each milestone into a full list of criteria and RACI
    3. Update milestones every month to keep them current
  4. "Full plus". Full, and also validate milestones with stakeholders

What teams are good candidates?[edit]

Tried to come up with a taxonomy of WMF teams so that we could get at least one team from each type, but gave up. Based on undefined metrics of team type, this is a diverse set:

  • a horizontal team (CL, DR, comms)
  • VisualEditor, 3+?
  • RelEng (2/3)
  • Discovery (either team), level 2+
  • suggested diversity:
    • Finance
    • Ops

What tools will we use to create and store milestones?[edit]

  • Phabricator
  • Wiki pages?


  • SPDPP = Software Product Development Process Proposal
  • Horizontal: team whose members do work within other teams (Comms, CL, DR, ...)
  • Vertical: Has been used to describe the new "departments" within WMF Engineering. Teams that deliver and maintain products and services to users outside the Foundation.

These words are overloaded in the WMF context and should not be used for anything new:

  • service(s)
  • template

Open questions[edit]

  1. Is it helpful to cap Milestones at 10 at a time?
  2. Can horizontal and other non-product-lifecycle teams get value from this process?
  3. Especially for horizontal teams, what's the balance between having milestones and having criteria on other peoples' milestones?
  4. How much do our goals change mid-quarter
  5. How many bundles do we have?

What will we do with the results?[edit]

  1. validate or disprove some assumptions behind SPDPP
  2. Might change how Q4 quarterly goals are set; this change would have to be ready by ~Feb 2016