Document review and updating

An alternative to version control is a living document.

document review and updating-36document review and updating-2

Document review and updating

As a Business Analyst, it’s hard to imagine giving up documentation altogether, and I’m not completely convinced it’s the right thing to do (especially not on my current project, which spans four continents).

But agilists are right to challenge the document-heavy approach.

Magenta markup has the added benefit of providing an ideal ice-breaker for document review sessions – I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve had to explain why I use it.

The other mark-up dilemma I often face is exactly what to mark up.

The document as a whole was never approved – rather, the acceptance criteria within it were approved individually by adding a date stamp against them.

I like this lightweight approach to approval – it saves a lot of time and effort and speeds things up considerably.

Sure, you can improve readability by accepting an addition or a deletion here and there, but that somehow feels like you are subverting the tool, trying to trick your audience.

Recently I have been marking up my changes manually, simply by changing the font colour, and thus avoiding such subversive feelings.

One of the challenges of agile is to see just how little documentation you can get away with and still deliver working, maintainable software.

There is much talk of index cards and whiteboards, and of the code being the documentation.

Sometimes I use different colours to show the changes for each draft.

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