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Collaborate, learn and get things done. Our Front-End Jam Session

Is it possible to deliver a child with 9 women in 1 month? Answer is obvious.
However we’ve tried to prove an opposite during one of our last experiment.

Amongst other goals of our client we got a fairly decent challenge — refresh the UI and put new layout together. Funny enough all that we had was 3 days and a bunch of approved designs.

Initial estimation for the front-end guys was 40 hours. Taking into account limited amount of the lead time and the fact that resources are shared between different products we’ve found out that the only one way to hit the delivery goal is to boost front-end performance.

We’ve gathered 4 front-end engineers from 4 different products — our kind of 4×4 in this case. Here they are — say Hi to Oksana, Alex, Sergei and Dima.

Upon starting this up we wanted to achieve a lot more than just plain scope execution.

What we’ve aimed for:

  • Implement defined scope
  • Build up self-organized team
  • Hit the scope, present to the customer
  • Share everybody’s knowledge
  • Apply best practices in everyone’s product
  • Have ton’s of fun

Few nights, hundreds lines of code and countless pizzas later the new born team finally got everything together. You’re welcome to compare the results yourself (great design is by Andrey Khorolets)

Goals completed:

  • Scope was completed! 3 days instead of planned 4 though
  • Everyone is now willing to use learned practices in products they are doing
  • And everybody agreed that we certainly need to conductmore of those sessions. At least once a month and not only for front-end stuff
  • Yep, and it was a whole lot of fun

Lessons learned:

  • Participants has to be pro-active, self-organized, open and focused on the problem solving
  • The scope should be clearly defined and prioritized. Ask a question if there is any concern.
  • Synchronization and again synchronization. Start day at same time, periodically go through work done and recap remaining scope

Hopefully you’ve enjoying reading it. Railswarians have by far more awesomeness to show so stay tuned!

Here some of Code examples stuff: