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Dynamic System Development

DSDM or The Dynamic Systems Development Method provides a framework of controls and best practice for Rapid Application Development (RAD).

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Dynamic System Development

  1. 1. Lecture: 10 Dynamic System Development Method (DSDM)
  2. 2. 2 DSDM DSDM or The Dynamic Systems Development Method provides a framework of controls and best practice for Rapid Application Development (RAD). It is particularly suitable for application development projects that need to develop complex business solutions within tight timeframes.
  3. 3. 3 A worldwide consortium of systems developers initially designed (and indeed are still evolving) DSDM (now in Version 4.1). Their goal was to produce what at the time they referred to as a RAD methodology which has evolved into an Agile Method model that is time, quality and cost sensitive, producing deliverables quickly and accurately – rapid and right.
  4. 4. 4 Since its inception in 1995, more than 20,000 practitioners have been trained and thousands of developers have used DSDM successfully. As with a number of the approaches described in the text book, in DSDM, time is fixed for the life of a project, and resources are fixed as far as possible. This means that it is the requirements that will be satisfied that are allowed to change.
  5. 5. 5 DSDM Principles DSDM is based on seven overriding principles, these are: 1) Active user involvement is imperative. 2) The focus is on frequent delivery of products. 3) Fitness for business purpose is the essential criterion for acceptance of deliverables.
  6. 6. 6 4) Iterative and incremental development is necessary to converge on an accurate business solution. 5) All changes during development are reversible. 6) Testing is integrated throughout the life cycle. 7) Collaboration and cooperation is essential.
  7. 7. 7 Ambassador Users To emphasis this particular aspect of DSDM, the key users within a DSDM project are know as Ambassador Users. Ambassador Users are so called because they have an ambassadorial role between the project team and the actual end users. They promote two-way communication and compromise between the end user community and the project development team.
  8. 8. 8 Of course, they are not the only users who should be involved, not least as they may only have a view of part of the whole project. Rather they help to identify other users who should become directly involved as and when necessary. If this is not practical, then they must represent the input and ideas of other users. They should not have a passive role in the project as they should be involved not only with determining the features the system must include but also in the testing, direction and overall solution produced.
  9. 9. 9 DSDM lifecycle The actual DSDM lifecycle is broken down into seven different phases, these are: 1) Pre-Project Phase, 2) Feasibility Study, 3) Business Case Study, 4) the Functional Model Iteration (FMI), 5) the Design and Build Iteration (DBI), 6) the Implementation Phase and 7) the Post-Project Phase. These are illustrated in Figure 4.2.
  10. 10. 10 Fig. 4.2 DSDM lifecycle
  11. 11. 11 The first three phases (namely, the Pre-Project, Feasibility and Business Studies phases) are done sequentially in order. These phases set the ground rules for the rest of development process allowing users and teams to understand the world within which the application must execute as well as what will be expected of the end product.
  12. 12. 12 The Feasibility Study phase is expected only to last a few weeks. The output of this phase is a “feasibility report” that assesses whether or not to use DSDM for the particular project. It should also consider issues surrounding the people and organizations involved, and define the general scope of the project and its objectives. This phase should also produce an outline plan for the development of the end product. Feasibility Study
  13. 13. 13 Business Study The Business Study phase of the project should have three outputs; these should be the Business Area Definition (BAD), the System Architecture Definition (SAD) and the Outline Prototyping plan: Business Area Definition. Identifies the high-level requirements and provides a process description of the end product. System Architecture Definition. Sketches out the architecture of end system. Note that it is likely that this will evolve over the life of the project. Outline Prototyping Plan. This states the prototyping strategy to be adopted for the development of the end product.
  14. 14. 14 FMI The core phases of the DSDM are the FMI, the DBI and the Implementation Phase The FMI Phase involves: Analysis of the features to be designed and implemented. The production of the Functional Model. This is the primary output of this phase. It may include prototype code as well as analysis models. Coding and prototyping. Prototypes may be used to help improve the analysis or understanding of the system. These prototypes may continue to evolve (particularly in the next phase) until the quality level achieved is high enough that they can be used in the delivered system.
  15. 15. 15 DBI The DBI Phase involves: Designing and Building the features to be implemented during this phase. This involves reviewing the designs produced so far, the functional prototypes, as well as the creation of code to implement the required functionality. The primary output of this state is the tested system. This system must meet all the requirements selected as essential in the particular iteration being implemented.
  16. 16. 16 Implementation Phase The Implementation Phase involves: The transfer of the completed system from the development environment to the production environment. The provision of other deliverables such as User training, the creation of the User Manual and the Project Review Report. If issues arise, then the project can be reiterated back to the appropriate phase.
  17. 17. 17 The core three phases, the FMI, the DBI and the Implementation Phase are expected to be iterative and incremental. However, exactly how these three phases overlap and merge is left to a particular project to decide.
  18. 18. 18 Post-Project After the project has delivered the end product, the project team can be disbanded and the Post- Project activities initiated. This phase may cover such diverse activities as providing a help desk for users to ensure that the product operates effectively and checking that the expected business benefits have been achieved.
  19. 19. 19 Timebox Within the two main product creation phases (the FMI and DBI) the primary mechanism used for handling the uncertainty considered inherent in the development process is the timebox. In any project, there is a fixed completion date, which provides an overall timebox for the work to be carried out. DSDM refines the concept of timeboxing by nesting shorter timeboxes of 2–6 weeks within the overall time frame.
  20. 20. 20 Each timebox will typically pass through three phases. Investigation – a quick pass to see whether the team is taking the right direction. Refinement – to build on the comments resulting from the review at the end of investigation. Consolidation – the final part of the timebox to tie up any loose ends.
  21. 21. 21 Each timebox has an immovable end date and a prioritized set of requirements assigned to it. Some of these are mandatory, some are of a lesser priority. The prioritisation of the requirements throughout the timebox is checked and possibly reassigned using the MoSCoW Rules.
  22. 22. 22 MoSCoW Rules The MoSCoW rules provide the basis on which decisions are made over the entire project, and during any timebox. As timeboxes are fixed, the deliverables from the timebox may vary according to the amount of time left. Essential work must be done – less critical work can be omitted. So, the MoSCoW rules are applied.
  23. 23. 23 MoSCoW rules MoSCoW stands for: Must haves: fundamental to the projects success “on time” Should haves: important but the projects success does not rely on these Could haves: can easily be left out without impacting on the project “on budget” Won’t have this time round: can be left out this time and done at a later date.
  24. 24. 24 A clear prioritization is developed ensuring that the essential work is completed within the given timeframe. Recent trends within the DSDM community have been to combine DSDM with XP to gain the benefits of DSDM’s project management framework and business focus with XP’s high efficiency and high-quality development practices, what has been called Enterprise XP or EXP (Craddock, 2002).
  25. 25. Questions