Love him or hate him Steve Jobs was one of the most prolific product designers/developers in history and we would do well to listen to his insights. This part of an interview with Steve that highlights what he understands about the nature of what it takes to create great Products. But you substitute the word “software” wherever you see “a product” and it would be just as relevant (and it only occurs twice in this short piece).
The middle group of words here are key.
“…there is just a tremendous amount of craftsmanship between a great idea and a great product.”
And as you evolve that great idea, it changes and grows.
It never comes out like it starts…”
Software Development like Product Design is a creative endeavor. It’s not predictive. Why do we continue to treat it like it’s predictive? You can predict how much work a team can accomplish in a week. We can come with metrics for things like this in the small. But the large is an entirely different matter as Jobs describes. In Agile we use the empiric’s of the small to make the changing large successful.
Steve was a master of the large. We would do well to listen to his sage wisdom.