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Episodic Product Development

lukefeeney profile image Luke Feeney ・2 min read

We have an developed an episodic structure to our technical product development. We collectively create a episode in the Friends format - The one where Rachel goes to the coffee shop (again) - and write a full text of the episode. It is a spoiler title that gives you end at the start - great for product development, but not so much for TV shows.

That text gets turned into a video and we use the text/video as the north star of our feature delivery work. We have a backlog of three episodes so we know what's coming next, but the plan is always to get the current episode delivered.

That plan regularly goes a little haywire as we approach completion - some teams start on next episode stuff and the final touches of delivery are forgotten. To counter this, we made 'complete' mean a full tutorial demonstrating what we have built.

To give you an idea of what I am talking about:

Here is the description of the first episode. It is The one where Nathan gets a Spreadsheet in the End.

And accompanying video (the quality has become much better since we switched to Vyond):

Here is the concluding tutorial

And the accompanying screencast:

We are still tiny - the team is just 10 people - and this has really helped our ability to deliver in a consistent cadence.

Hopefully some others find it a useful template.

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Luke Feeney

@lukefeeney

Sunlit uplands. Trying to deliver the database of the future with my comrades in the TerminusDB community.

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