Motherhood Story

A UserStory that is really a generator of UserStories. For example:

The strength of this idea is that MotherhoodStorys are invaluable clues to real (hard) requirements - which in XP are UserStories. The name seems to capture this nicely.

See PlanningGame, MotherhoodStatement, XpFixedPlanningGame.

Q: I am faced with a few MotherhoodStorys on my current project. Can anyone give more detail on how these might be broken down into 3-week UserStorys? In particular, some appear at first glance to be atomic MotherhoodStory's -- the product won't really be 'deliverable' until the entire story is complete.

Particulars: We are building a distributed filesystem, with real-time constraints driven by a few key applications. Thus, as per the above example, The product will load-balance many servers is one story. Another is Client application X will be able to play media at aggregate bandwidth Y from the filesystem. Finally the rather large The filesystem will support the full set of filesystem APIs on platforms A, B, and C.

To be fair, the filesystem API story is relatively easy to break down -- there are nicely separable features of the filesystem. So this one just has the atomic MotherhoodStory problem.

But the Client X aggregate bandwidth Y story is almost a FunctionalTest specification. How do I get estimable UserStorys out of this?

Any guidance in the OneTrueWayOfXp? is greatly appreciated.

-- GarthDickie

Sure. Just play the XpFixedPlanningGame.

OK, here is an idea. You can split the bandwidth story at least in two: The first one is a pretty standard UserStory. The second one is at least testable. It can be split further like so: I think the point is that each increase in bandwidth should be a rather minor optimization. [Disclaimer: I don't know where I'm talking about.]

-- StephanHouben


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