Software Visualization - Lessons from the Motion Picture Industry.

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The practice of storyboarding was developed out of the need to provide more information to the film’s director, cast and crew to better understand the narrative and how to better communicate the message and details for creation of the movie.


As storyboards supplemented the information in a movie script, other visual artifacts such as Universal Modeling Language (UML) diagrams, Swimlane diagrams and more were implemented in the software definition process.
Most of these, however, were targeted towards the technical audience such as the architects and developers.

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Software Visualization - Lessons from the Motion Picture Industry.

  1. 1. Storyboarding – Then & Now<br />Robert Grashuis, Chief Visualization Officer<br />
  2. 2. “68% of projects fail, run late, or are OVER budget.”- The Standish Group, 2009 Chaos Summary Report<br />“70% of REWORK is attributed to correcting requirements errors.” - Meta Group<br />“30% of project costs are REWORK .”- Forrester Research<br />
  3. 3.
  4. 4. Storyboarding<br />Storyboarding is an integral part of the software definition process today.<br />The value storyboarding provides is to supplement the requirements with additional information for a better understanding of the requirements and their context within the system as a whole.<br />The origins of storyboarding is rooted in the motion picture industry. <br />
  5. 5. Storyboarding<br />The traditional process of storyboarding was developed at the Walt Disney studios in the 1930’s. Storyboards were used for animated cartoon movies, such as “The Three Little Pigs”. <br />Throughout the 1930‘s the usage of storyboards grew dramatically. By 1940 storyboards were ubiquitous in all movie studios and thus became an integral part of the process of making movies.<br />
  6. 6. Storyboarding<br />The practice of storyboarding was developed out of the need to provide more information to the film’s director, cast and crew to better understand the narrative and how to better communicate the message and details for creation of the movie.<br />
  7. 7. Storyboarding<br />In the traditional Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC), the equivalent to the movie script is the Vision document.<br />While the Vision document contains the project purpose and its goals, it is still a text-only description that can be ambiguous and subject to misinterpretation by the stakeholders. <br />
  8. 8. Storyboarding<br />For the the movie production process, storyboards filled informational gaps in the script by introducing details about the camera position, lighting, scenery/set environments and also action or movement on screen.<br />
  9. 9. Storyboarding<br />As storyboards supplemented the information in a movie script, other visual artifacts such as Universal Modeling Language (UML) diagrams, Swimlane diagrams and more were implemented in the software definition process.<br />Most of these, however, were targeted towards the technical audience such as the architects and developers.<br />
  10. 10. Storyboarding<br />While UML diagrams and other visual representations were helping the technical audience in software definition, there was still a need to more effectively communicate with business stakeholders.<br />The advent of the Use Case was and still is a very popular means of conveying how the user and system interacts with each other through primary and alternate flows.<br />
  11. 11. Storyboarding<br />In addition, some software development teams recognized the need for a detailed rendering of the user interface elements.<br />For this, the screen wireframe and design composition were introduced.<br />The wireframe articulated the hierarchy of information on a screen and highlighted the navigation and other features.<br />This was a significant step forward for software definition.<br />
  12. 12. Storyboarding<br />As the process of movie making matured, the techniques and technologies to support the process improved as well.<br />Storyboards made the transition from static renderings to simple animations. Typically, photographs, sketches and even clay models were animated.<br />These motion-based storyboards were called Storyboard Animatics.<br />
  13. 13. Storyboarding<br />Storyboard Animatics offered an even richer level of detail that included timing, direction of motion and other kinematic behaviors.<br />
  14. 14. Storyboarding<br />In contrast, the software definition process utilized code-based prototyping to validate a software feature or functionality.<br />The draw-back to prototypes was that they were costly to produce and often only represented a small fragment of the system.<br />In the end, most prototypes were throw-away and did little to help articulate the “big picture” for stakeholders.<br />
  15. 15. The Paradox<br />While the software definition process and its artifacts multiplied over the years with different methods such as Waterfall, Rational Unified Process, Agile and more – the surprising fact was that projects were failing at a higher rate than ever before.<br />
  16. 16. Increased Complexity and Costs<br />The reason for this was that software applications were also increasing in both size and complexity.<br />While “traditional” processes and artifacts were helping, there still was a significant need to communicate more effectively and efficiently than ever before to ensure project success.<br />
  17. 17. Consumer Demand<br />The motion picture industry was experiencing the same dilemma.<br />Audiences were more savvy and demanding more from entertainment. With the bar raised, filmmakers also needed to improve their process and tools to more effectively create their art.<br />
  18. 18. Storyboarding to Previsualization<br />With the advent of increased computing power at lower costs, the process of storyboarding made another leap forward.<br />Storyboard animatics made the transition from simple animated photos to computer generated imagery.<br />This next advance was labeled Previsualization.<br />
  19. 19. Previsualization<br />For the first time, Previsualization allowed the Director, cast and crew to envision every shot, sequence and f/x in their movie prior to engaging in actual production.<br />This allowed the filmmaker the ultimate in planning and analysis to ensure that every aspect of the movie was correct before engaging in costly production.<br />
  20. 20. Previsualization – The Movie<br />
  21. 21. Visualization for Software Definition<br />Today, the ability to previs a software application has become a reality as well.<br />Using scenarios as the initial “sketches” of a storyboard, visualization tools allow software definition teams to model entire applications before writing a single line of code.<br />
  22. 22. Visualization for Software Definition<br />Similar to the AutoCAD/CAM technologies that revolutionized the automotive, aeronautical and construction industries, software visualization tools allow the creation of a simulated application to help stakeholders better understand the look & feel, behaviors and all other aspects of the application before it is built.<br />
  23. 23. Visualization – People & Process<br />As visualization has “closed the communications gap” for filmmakers, it is providing the same benefits to software application development.<br />With these new capabilities, both the people and process involved in application visualization are evolving as well.<br />As the first requirements agency, OneSpring is a pioneer in visualization for software definition.<br />
  24. 24. The Traditional Approach<br />Most methods for software definition provide the critical details needed to truly understand the application too late in the lifecycle. <br />
  25. 25. The Traditional Approach<br />Requirements 101<br />The old way:<br />
  26. 26. The Traditional Approach<br />Requirements 101<br />The old way:<br />
  27. 27. The Traditional Approach<br />Requirements 101<br />The old way:<br />
  28. 28. The Traditional Approach<br />Requirements 101<br />The old way:<br />
  29. 29. The Traditional Approach<br />Requirements 101<br />The old way:<br />
  30. 30. The Stream Process™ occurs at the beginning of the lifecycle and provides stakeholders the ability to experience and validate their requirements from the start.<br />OneSpring<br />The New Approach<br />
  31. 31. The Modern Approach<br />An improved approach:<br />
  32. 32. The Modern Approach<br />An improved approach:<br />
  33. 33. The Modern Approach<br />An improved approach:<br />
  34. 34. The Modern Approach<br />An improved approach:<br />
  35. 35. The Modern Approach<br />An improved approach:<br />
  36. 36. The Modern Approach<br />An improved approach:<br />
  37. 37. The Modern Approach<br />An improved approach:<br />
  38. 38. The Modern Approach<br />An improved approach:<br />
  39. 39. The Modern Approach<br />An improved approach:<br />
  40. 40. The Stream Process™ is a framework for how to better innovate and collaborate using visualization. <br />The New Approach<br />
  41. 41. Accelerating the time to understanding provides a far greater return on investment<br />OneSpring<br />100%<br />50%<br />Traditional<br />0%<br />The Benefit<br />
  42. 42. Thank you!<br />For more information on how previsualization can help you make the most of your software projects, visit www.onespring.net, email clarity@onespring.net or call us toll-free, 1-888-472-1840.<br />

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