Also, see the page on user stories.
LTS operates following principles of minimal computing and appropriate technology, and agile is a natural part of this as a light-weight framework focused on delivering software that works. We use the lightest and fastest methods sufficient for success, utilizing more as needed (e.g., to address confusion, complications, complexity). All work includes: starting with definition of done and success criteria, agile project management, test-driven development, and project portfolio management.
Story for Explaining Process
Some programming is relatively simple, and is really scripting. For this, the scripts run and any user can see the results to answer yes/no on if it worked. For that type of work, this page is less relevant.
Here, we are discussing complex systems and programming. This really is engineering.
As an example, think about an engineering team that creates a new plane engine.
Process: Agile defines roles and responsibilities for all involved, and includes defined concepts to support optimal work towards success. For an overview of the iterative nature of work in agile, see the DDT slides on iterative development. For all LTS projects, a member of LTS will serve as the Product Manager, in addition to roles for the programming/development and other technical work. Additionally, a member of LTS may often serve as the Product Owner. LTS representatives are also stakeholders.
Roles & Responsibilities, Examples
Years ago, the Panama Canal Museum Inventory (PCMI), which is a database without digital files, was loaded into UFDC. UFDC is not an appropriate technology because it is a digital library and users expect to find records and digital files, never just records.
With the migration pending for UFDC, LTS reached out to John Nemmers, who directs the Panama Collection, to see about options. In a meeting, three options were reviewed:
Following the meeting, John sent his specifications, so that LTS could review to better assess and make a recommendation.
In reviewing these options with the Software Unit, Chris noted a preference for the local database because it offered a learning opportunity for working with MVC. Given the relatively initial approximate costs for all options, the local database allowed for more known and lower costs ongoing, and the local database was the one option with an added benefit of a learning outcome, the local database option was selected by John and LTS in collaboration together.
This work is queued for Q3/Q4 of 2021.
Brian Keith and Bonnie Smith led the development of the ARL PD Bank: a digital collection of position descriptions (PDs) from major academic and research libraries. The ARL PD Bank fosters the sharing of information through a browseable and searchable database that provides access to a national collection (or bank) of PDs. The ARL PD Bank supports the management of PDs for individual institutions, providing an effective organizational method and system that supports findability as well as archiving for long-term digital preservation.
For creating this important, international resource, Brian and Bonnie collaborated with library HR professionals around the country to develop the metadata tags, information structure, tools, and training. They then partnered with Mark Sullivan, as the programmer, and Laurie Taylor, as facilitator (in her Digital Humanities/Scholarship capacity) to support technical development. The first release went through iterations before and following release and testing.
As the ARL PD Bank emerged as a foundational resource, Brian and Bonnie again led next stage development, defining needs with two grants, and again collaborating with Laurie, Todd Digby, and Chelsea Johnston, to continue to develop the system, including moving to UF IT hosting and development, with a service level agreement and contracts for each phase with subcomponents and projects. As of 2021, the ARL PD Bank has released two major versions (funded by two major grants) and is in process on a third. In all of this, Brian and Bonnie have served as subject matter or domain experts, and collaborators informing and providing necessary information to inform and support development.
See more about the ARL PD Bank.
LTS and Special & Area Studies Collections connected together to move ArchivesSpace forward. ArchivesSpace is industry standard software for managing archival collection information, which takes the form of finding guides. Previously, these had been managed on the Libraries' website, which is not the appropriate technology for this work because it does not fit for website or archival needs. Indeed, ArchivesSpace had been developed over many years specifically for these needs, and it is the appropriate technology.
LTS identified the Software Unit as the owners for this work: Andy as lead, with support from Chris (with support from Cliff for Linux, etc.). SASC identified Matt Kruse as primary, with John Nemmers as support. The four of them (Andy, Chris, Matt, and John) worked closely together through installation and configuration, and then updates.
The updates were defined by Matt, who provided a list of desired features, user story style explanation of each need (what it does, why, etc.), notes on possible solution resources from the ArchivesSpace community, and other information to support Andy's work. Matt also defined his migration plan, which included shifting workflows, migrating content, and communications. The LTS and SASC team worked from this in an iterative and consultative manner.
Matt provided: overview documentation, documentation throughout the process, expert consultation, referral to contacts at other institutions using ArchivesSpace for consultation, requirements for definition of done, migration path and process, and other work to support the process.
Andy and Chris: in addition to the technical work, they learned Linux (working with Cliff) and other technologies to be able to implement the system. Further, Andy and Chris met regularly with Matt for any questions/clarification. Chris sent weekly emails to Todd and Laurie, for updates and so Todd and Laurie could help on any questions/translations and on clearing any blockers.