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8.2. Determining the Current State in Our Story

Smith and his team were six weeks into development. They had provided an early demonstration of the system to their stake-holders. Angela and the other stakeholders were pleased with what they saw, and they gave valuable feedback. However, the system was not yet usable by end users.

Smith started the iteration planning session with a walk-through to determine the current state. Figure 8-2 shows the states they had achieved on the left, and the states not yet achieved on the right.

Figure 3.2

Figure 8-2. The team uses the alphas to determine the current states.

Table 8-1 shows the current states for the alphas and describes how the team in our story achieved them.

Table 8-1. How the Team Achieved the Current State of Development

Current State

How It Was Achieved


Smith’s team had demonstrated an early version of the application based on an initial set of requirements. After the demonstration, the stakeholders agreed that the understanding of the requirements was acceptable.

The agreed-on requirement items were online and offline browsing of the social network, and making posts offline. However, these requirement items were only partially implemented at the time of the demonstration. According to the state definition, our team has achieved the Requirements: Acceptable state.


Early during development, Smith’s team had identified the critical technical issues for the software system and outlined the architecture. This had allowed them to achieve the Software System: Architecture Selected state. Moreover, Smith’s team had demonstrated an early version of the system to their stakeholders. This means that Smith’s team had achieved the Software System: Demonstrable state. However, since Smith’s team had not completed enough functionality to allow users to employ the system on their own, Smith’s team had not yet achieved the Software System: Usable state.


The two new members, Dick and Harriet, who had just come on board were not fully productive yet. In particular, they seemed to have trouble with the approach to automated testing, which the team agreed was important to maintain high quality during development. They had difficulty identifying good test cases and writing good test code. As such, the team agreed that the Way of Working is currently in the In Place state. But they had not yet achieved the Working Well state.

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