Software Estimating Resources

Herding Cats

This blog page is dedicated to the resources used to estimate software-intensive systems using traditional and agile development methods. The reason for this resource page is the lack of understanding of how to estimate, the urban myths about software estimating, and the fallacies that estimating is not needed, when developing software, in the presence of uncertainty, when spending other peoples money. Estimating Probable System Cost,” Stephen A. 245, 2008.

Estimating is a Learned Skill

Herding Cats

Estimating is a learned skill, used for any purpose from every-day life to management of projects. When I left for the airport this morning to catch my flight to a customer site I estimated, given the conditions, how much time I need to get to my favorite parking spot at DIA. The same process for estimating is applied to multi-billion dollar projects we work. Here's some materials that provide the tools and processes needed to learn how to estimate. 1, January 2008.

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Basis of Estimating Software Development

Herding Cats

The estimating of software development is both straightforward and complex. When it is suggested that estimating is hard, of no value, and unnecessary, always ask what principle is used to support that claim? Here are some resources that will provide guidance to produce credible software development estimates, in both traditional and agile domains. Software Sizing and Estimating: Mk II FPA , Charles Symons, John Wiley & Sons, 1991.

A Compendium of Works to Increase the Probability of Project Success

Herding Cats

Product & Process Development Kaizen , LPPDE, Denver, Colorado, April 21-23, 2008. Five Easy Pieces: The Essentials of Managing Programmatic Risk , 10th Annual Rocky Mountain Project Management Symposium, Denver Colorado, April 2008. Programmatic Risk Management, Program Planning and Controls Workshop , Denver, Colorado, 6-14, October 2008. How to Develop Credible Cost & Schedule Estimate. Basis of Estimate Process.

2008 45

Real Options and Decision Making for ICT Projects

Herding Cats

Estimation locks down choices early through upfront t decision making, #NoEstimates preserves options. The notion from the #NoEstimates post that estimation locks down choices early and NOT estimating is the solution, and then somehow connects #NoEstimates with Real Options demonstrates the lack of understanding of how Real Options is based on estimating the choices that can be made as options in the presence of uncertainty. 72, 2nd Quarter, 2008, pp.

2008 31

Risk Management is How Adults Manage Projects

Herding Cats

But when some statement is made about risk, estimating, performance modeling, or the like - always ask for references. Risk Analysis – A Quantitative Guide , Third Edition, David Vose, John Wiley & Sons April 2008. Risk Analysis: A Quantitative Guide , David Vose, John Wiley & Sons 2008. NoEstimates Estimating Risk

2003 38

Resources for Cone of Uncertainty

Herding Cats

Some feel that the cone does not provide any value for the work they do and does not match the reducing uncertainty in their estimates. First, the Cone of Uncertainty is a Principle used to define the needed reduction in the variances of estimates on Programs. From his article in an IEEE magazine often quoted by No Estimates advocates. . In particular, he wonders whether estimates for work remaining are better (obviously, uncertainty’s not an issue for work already done).

2007 32

How to Lie With Statistics

Herding Cats

This approach makes it look like the voter turnout is dramatically different between 2008 and 2016. In this case, as well the Ideal has no basis in fact since both the estimate and the actual are random variances subject to the uncertainties of project management - aleatory and epistemic uncertainties. Each dot (diamond and triangle) needs a confidence band from the original estimating process. NoEstimates Books Estimating Mathematics

2016 43

Decision Making in the Presence of Uncertainty

Herding Cats

There's another rash of Twitter posters supporting the conjecture that decisions can be made about how to spend other people's money without estimating the impact and outcome of that decision. Theory of Decision under Uncertainty, Itzhak Gilboa, July 2008. NoEstimates Decision Making Estimating

2016 39

Misunderstanding Making Decisions in the Presence of Uncertainty

Herding Cats

What happens if you shift focus from "accurate estimation" to "reliably shipping by a date"? . If your project has no uncertainty, there is no need to estimate. The notion (as suggested in the quote) of shifting from accurate (what ever that means) ways of estimating to reliability shipping be a date is not physically possible since the irreducible and reducible uncertainties are always present. All estimates have precision and accuracy. 12, 2008.

Quote of the Day

Herding Cats

Adapting plans and estimates to changing customer needs and maximizing value at an affordable cost are the planning imperative for agile projects - paraphrased from "Timeline, Getting and Keeping Control Over Your Project," Malotaux, Annual Pacific Northwest Software Conference , Portland, OR, 2008 in Project Management the Agile Way: Making it Work in the Enterprise , John Goodpasture.

2008 31

Monte Carlo Simulation

Herding Cats

Estimation is part of project management. . The most important estimates for the project manager are related to time and cost. . Since it is easier to estimate small tasks, these estimates are often calculated and performed as point estimates, for example, a task will take 3 days. Or perhaps as an estimate with two-point ranges. Each work activity in a discrete model will have an estimated duration - a scalar number, usually measured in days.

2018 38

Process Reduces Agility? Only on De Minimis Projects

Herding Cats

VanderLeest GLSEC 2008. "A When managing any project as Risk Managers as Tim Lister suggested, we need to make estimates in the presence of these uncertainties as well. NoEstimates Agile Estimating RiskA popular toss off aphrase in some agile circles is process reduces agility. This is course is stated in the absence of any domain or context.

Cone of Uncertainty Bibliography

Herding Cats

This can be the confidence in the estimate for any variable. But is can be ANY variance for the program, including confidence in the estimates of future performance - cost, schedule, or technical performance. This usually results in a project's actual costs far outrunning the optimistic estimates and creating a large overrun. Olagbemiro, Naval Postgraduate School Dissertation, December 2008.

2017 32

Book of the Month

Herding Cats

Of course, all three of these are operating in the presence of uncertainty and therefore require estimates to be made. Estimates of the aleatory and epistemic uncertainties that create risk to the delivered Value need to be handled. Keeney, Militarty Operations Research , Volume 13, Number 2, 2008, pp. NoEstimates Estimating

2009 32

Microeconomics and Risk Management in Decision Making for Software Development

Herding Cats

When we hear about software development disasters and then hear that estimates are to blame, and NOT Estimating will somehow reduce or prevent these disasters, think again. Each of the categories operates in the presence of uncertainty and requires that estimates be made about the probability, conseqeunce of the resutling risk. Managing in the presence of uncertainty requires we make estimates and act accordingly to the results of these estimates.

2007 32

Cone of Uncertainty - Part Cinq

Herding Cats

The Cone is a project management framework describing the uncertainty aspects of estimates (cost and schedule) and other project attributes (cost, schedule, and technical performance parameters). Estimates of cost, schedule, technical performance on the left side of the cone have a lower probability of being precise and accurate than estimates on the right side of the cone. The BLUE bars are the probabilistic ranges of the current estimate date.

2017 33

Why Johnny Can't Do The Math

Herding Cats

In a previous post, Why Johnny Can't Estimate , mentioned some resources for estimating, the principles of business and technical management that demand estimates be made to make decisions, and background on the sources of uncertainty, that create risk, that require estimating to increase the probability of project success. One of the #Noestimates advocates has now discovered a phrase: Estimates are non-ergodic. It is not the Estimates that are non-ergodic.

Cone of Uncertainty - Part Trois

Herding Cats

The Cone is a project management framework describing the uncertainty aspects of estimates (cost and schedule) and other project attributes (cost, schedule, and technical performance parameters). Estimates of cost, schedule, technical performance on the left side of the cone have a lower probability of being precise and accurate than estimates on the right side of the cone. The BLUE bars are the probabilistic ranges of the current estimate date.

2017 28

Cone of Uncertainty - Part Cinq (Updated)

Herding Cats

The Cone is a project management framework describing the uncertainty aspects of estimates (cost and schedule) and other project attributes (cost, schedule, and technical performance parameters). Estimates of cost, schedule, technical performance on the left side of the cone have a lower probability of being precise and accurate than estimates on the right side of the cone. Estimates are needed but are subject to large level of uncertainty. Agile 2008 Conference. [18]

2017 30

Treat Cause Not The Symptom

Herding Cats

1] Apollo Root Cause Analysis: Effective Solutions to Everyday Problems Every Time, 3rd Edition, Dean Gano, Atlas Books, 2008. [2] Herding Cats: Principles of Cost and Schedule Estimating. Why Guessing is not Estimating and Estimating is not Guessing. When gaps in performance, benefits shortfalls, unanticipated cost, schedule, and performance variances, faulty products, or any undesirable outcome, blame the process, not people.

2008 32

Planning a Budget for a Proposal in 5 Easy Steps (+ Example)

Girl's Guide to PM

In order to estimate costs well, you first need to estimate the amount of work you need to put into each activity you have planned. Not only that: you need to estimate who will do the work. If you are part of a consortium, remember to separate these estimates per company, as you will also need to present the budget broken down per company. Step 3: Estimate Labour Costs. Once that is taken care of, it is time to estimate the hourly rate.

2017 218

Part II: A Simplified Approach to Determine IT Project Complexity

PM Times

2008)”. Not only were they able to evaluate complexity, but they also used the data to estimate resources and project duration in a matter of minutes. Once requirements are understood, a good ballpark estimate can be made for detailed engineering resources.

2021 52

Putting Free back into Freelancing

Paymo App

Some of our earliest users might still remember that Paymo initially started out as a free tool back in 2008, mainly used by the freelance community to track time. The gig economy in the US is now estimated to be about 34% of the workforce and expected to be 43% by the year 2020. According to some estimates by 2027 there will be more freelance workers in the US then full time employees.

2027 42

The Perfect Storm for The Project Economy

Leading Answers

Eric Ries documented his lean startup methodology in 2008 as a way for organizations to adapt and experiment with new ideas and perform market tests. With all the planning, estimation, risk management, and earned value tracking, there was a fair amount of math and admin involved.

2020 78

Are Spreadsheets Costing Your Agency Money?

Function Point

A powerful project management tool like Function Point allows you to take analytics from past projects to visualize where scope creep occurred, help make smarter estimates and tighter budgets, and ultimately fend off potential project scope creep. You’re not still designing websites as you did in 2008, so it’s time to leave the spreadsheets in the past and bring your agency up to date. Are Spreadsheets Costing Your Agency Money?

2018 101

When projects go wrong and it's the worst possible moment

Susanne Madsen

Just consider the most important techniques we use as project managers: we define scope, analyse requirements, plan and estimate work, add contingency, manage risks, track changes and check the quality. At the time of opening in March 2008, only 85% of project deliverables had been completed. 10 guidelines for estimating project effort Innovative leaders ask powerful what-if questions Is the Ion Triangle Outdated?

2018 74

Redbooth Delivers Artificial-Intelligence-Based Predictive Task Management Capabilities

Redbooth

Smart Redbooth can now predict the appropriate resources to assign to a task and estimate the approximate date on which tasks should be completed. Founded in 2008, the company is privately held and headquartered in Palo Alto, California. ###. PALO ALTO, CA, May 8, 2018. Machine-Learning Powers Breakthroughs in Task and Project Management with “Smart Redbooth”.

2018 60

Project Management Lessons from Mavenlink CEO Ray Grainger

MavenLink

I learned about project metrics—tracking time, the importance of accurate tracking, and estimation methods. When we decided to start Mavenlink, it was the fall of 2008. Two weeks later, October 2008 arrived and everything started to crater. Mavenlink's Founder and CEO, Ray Grainger, has recently been featured in Bruce Harpham's book Project Managers at Work.

2017 89

Deconstructing The Cone of Uncertainty

Herding Cats

The paper on the Cone of Uncertainty is used by many in the No Estimates community as an example of why estimates are of little use. In this paper, there is data that does not follow the Cone of Uncertainty, in that the uncertainty of the estimates does not reduce as the project proceeds. There are projects did not follow the plan for reducing uncertainty in the estimates. Domain-Based Effort Distribution Model for Software Cost Estimation,: Thomas Tan, Ph.D.

2007 37

Asana vs. Trello: Which Project Management Tool Should You Choose?

ProProfs Project Management

Founded in 2008, Asana is a relatively new tool that has already gained popularity as a task management solution. The software allows you to track multiple projects, create dependencies among tasks, get time estimates, and perform a host of other activities. .

2021 52

Little's Law - Use, Misuse, and Sometimes Simply Wrong Ideas

Herding Cats

Then we have to Estimate what these measures need to be so the third variable of Little's Law can be Calculated. It has been suggested that with Little's Law No Estimates (#NoEstimates) can be applied. So estimates are needed to produce numbers for this demand, rather than measuring the demand. Estimating Average Production INtervals Using Inventory Measurements: Little's Law for Partially Observable Processes," Ardavan Nozari and Ward Whitt, Operations Research , Vol.

2017 32

The 23 Best Project Management Books For Upgrading Your Career in 2020

Planio

However, while this book covers basics like estimating and planning projects, where it shines is in covering the soft skills of project management. Published date: 2008 (revised edition). The number one thing every project manager needs to level up their skills is experience.

2020 123

Risk Management Resources

Herding Cats

requires making estimates) ? 79, 2008. “`,” Stephen Ward and Chris Chapman , International Journal of Project Management , 21, pp. Estimation of Long?Term 3, 2008. Risk Analysis & Estimating Uncertainty … and what this has to do with the price of milk in McLean,” Phil Beenhouwer, The Society of Cost Estimating & Analysis (SCEA), May 17, 2006. ius, KSI Transactions on Knowledge Society, Volume 1, Number 3, 2008. 11 November 2008.

Risk 35

Scaling Scrum with Nexus and Kanban

Scrum.org

I've been using Kanban as a scaling mechanism on top of Scrum since around 2008 or so and it has been the approach I reach out to most often. Everybody wants to Scale Scrum.

2020 74

Project Risk Management: 10 Surprisingly Brilliant Tactics to Reduce Risk

Workamajig

Project management risks: Issues in planning, scheduling, estimating, and project communication. In a series of papers on the 2008 financial crisis , McKinsey reached two surprising conclusions: That countless people at several banks saw the financial crisis coming. Estimate : Map out the probability of each risk and its impact on the project. Plan : Create a cohesive plan with estimates, responses, and ownership details for each risk.

Risk 80

Are Remote Workers the Future of Green Business?

Teamweek

In 2018, the International Workplace Group estimated that 70% of people worldwide work from home at least part of the week. . A 2008 Sun Microsystems study found that energy consumption in home offices was half that of traditional offices. Looking to run a green business?

2020 56

A Compendium of Risk Management Resources

Herding Cats

requires making estimates) ? 79, 2008. “`,” Stephen Ward and Chris Chapman , International Journal of Project Management , 21, pp. Estimation of Long?Term 3, 2008. Risk Analysis & Estimating Uncertainty … and what this has to do with the price of milk in McLean,” Phil Beenhouwer, The Society of Cost Estimating & Analysis (SCEA), May 17, 2006. ius, KSI Transactions on Knowledge Society, Volume 1, Number 3, 2008. 11 November 2008.

Risk 33

Black Swans

Herding Cats

One of the books used by a vocal No Estimates advocate is Black Swans by Nassim Taleb. Here's a book review from 2008, about Black Swans and Fooled By Randomness in the context of managing software development in the presence of uncertainty. The concepts of Taleb and its application to project management is shared by some in the project management community (and now in the No Estimates community). The No Estimates advocates have a similar set of behaviors.).

2002 32

A Seriously Challenged Project

The Tao of Project Management

As early as 2005 the Scottish Parliament shelved the project when new cost estimates revealed an increase of 30% to the original £375m budget and although the project did get going again, those early cost increases were a warning sign of what was to come. Disputes between the various parties, quality issues and changes in design plagued the project and between 2008 and 2009 it became clear that the project had some deep seated issues.

2015 33