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Tim Murphy is a Solutions Architect at PSC Group, LLC (www.psclistens.com). He has been an IT Consultant since 1999 specializing in Microsoft technologies and Software Architecture. Tim is a co-founder of the Chicago Information Technology Architects Group as well as a contributing author of the book The Definitive Guide to the Microsoft Enterprise Library and part of the Influceners program on the geekswithblogs.net site. He has also spoken at the nPlus1 ArcSummit in Chicago, the Chicago Code Camp and has appeared on the Thirsty Developer podcast. Tim is a DZone MVB and is not an employee of DZone and has posted 55 posts at DZone. You can read more from them at their website. View Full User Profile

Yet Another “Why Waterfall Doesn’t Work” Post

06.24.2013
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Lately I have been plunged back into an extreme waterfall project and it is eating away at my soul.  Don’t get me wrong.  I don’t really believe in a soul and I have never done a text book agile project, but the longer I’m on this project the more I feel like I’m in an infinite loop.  Document.  Review.  Document. Review.  At some point we may do some coding.

The biggest problem with waterfall projects is that you can always add more detail to design documents.  I have actually seen some documentation which had pseudo code for almost every line that the developer needs to type.  Of course these are extreme cases, but they put a spotlight on the issue.

All of this would be less costly to refactor as we code than it would be to continue to refine the design document.  A minimum of documentation to make sure we hit all the key requirements and make sure that the overall architecture is sound is really what a project needs.  Spend your time finding the problems by writing code instead of theorizing and discussing.

Moral: Waterfalls are pretty to look at, not run projects with.

Published at DZone with permission of Tim Murphy, author and DZone MVB. (source)

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