If you are developing software for yourself, a schedule may not matter at all. But if you have a delivery date to meet, programmers to motivate, and clients to satisfy, you need that schedule.
It’s no easy task. Even after developing software for almost a decade (from assembly languages to Ruby on Rails), my schedules still slip. It’s a great feeling if I deliver ahead of schedule but that’s a very rare occasion. If you are in charge of scheduling (even if you are not into software development), here are some things to consider from the essay by Christopher Hawkins.
- People take vacations.
- People can get sick.
- People don’t work on holidays (OK, some people do) and we have 11 of these legally. Not to mention typhoons, special holidays, and work suspension due to rallies.
- Disaster strikes anytime.
- Nobody is productive for 8 hours a day (except my former boss Preben Nielsen).