#NoEstimates: Perilous Snapshots in Time

Card counting and story points have a posterior alignment. But their journeys to get there can be very different.

Cautions: Card Counts versus Point

As John explains, and as seen from the 2009 ThoughtWorks e-Book, the trajectories of the count of story cards and points converge.

However, this is one of the problems with books. They present a snapshot. A moment in time. The graphs have a temporal element with in turn, cannot be captured on a page unless you present all the snapshots.

Imaging you’re a third of the way through a year and this is what you see. Which do you take action on? Story points (green) are deviating massively. Story card count, is not. So corrective project action is taken on the green line of points versus the blue line of counts.

Yet, in our case, we know from the future position shown in the previous graph, that they both converge.

But here’s the thing, what have we lost? Any corrective action taken at the sum of points, that we otherwise would not have done on the count of stories! What does that do? It changes the trajectory of the green line!

It’s no great secret that taking corrective action or having meetings to reorient, takes time away from the mainline of development and thus influences the success and trajectory of releases, sprints, projects and businesses. Reporting needs o be asynchronous. It has to come off-line as much as possible.

This article is part of a series taking a frank look at #NoEstimates. Visit BzSkits to read more about the topic and share your stories.

Written by

EA, Stats, Math & Code into a fizz of a biz or two. Founder: Automedi & Axelisys. Proud Manc. Citizen of the World. I’ve been busy

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