David and Andrew start this chapter off smashing us right in the face with reality. They ask the question and I quote: “Do you ever get the feeling that your project is doomed, even before it starts? Haha. I suspect we have all been in that situation before. Maybe someone from marketing promised today to the customer something that was on the roadmap for next year, or some feature that might be utterly impossible for the product you are working on to provide. Yeah, I’ve been there. David and Andrew will explain to us the concept they call the “Requirements Pit”. Before you start a project you need to gather requirements. You need to listen to your customers and not get dropped into the Pit. It will be only the Rancor waiting for you there, and there’s gate to smash its face in with.

These customers or stakeholders will present you with puzzles to solve, and sometimes with impossible one. There might be contradicting requirements like security vs. usability. For example, everybody hates multi-factor authentication but it is more secure. Sometimes you need to make decisions for your customers or educate them if they are willing to listen, but don’t ever present them with a choice of 2 technical trade-offs they will not understand. It will only increase your own troubles.

And even when you have elicited all the requirements, are you really comfortable about the situation? Did you really weighed all the options? David and Andrew will also provide some tips on how to proceed here.

And last they will discuss how not to victimize yourself with analysis paralysis and document important concepts through diagramming.

The next couple of blogs will dive right into the details.



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