Print Story Milestone Week
Diary
By codemonkey uk (Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 03:26:15 AM EST) (all tags)
For real this time.


What is Milestone Week?

Milestone week is the last week of a milestone period, at the end of which a deliverable is due.  A working build will be given to the publisher.  The importance of a milestone can have a big impact on the milestone week workload, at the least the milestone will have to be signed off on by the publisher, it is a check that our progress is on track.  The milestone is usually delivered on a Friday, sometimes the following Monday.  This week's milestone deliverable will be used for usability testing.  It is an important delivery, since the game will be seen by outsiders, who will be asked to give their feedback by the publishers.  That feedback can potentially have a huge impact on the direction we take from now on, the amount of work we have to do, and the support the publishers give us.  It is an important milestone.  The designers vision for the gameplay is being put to the test.  Will his creativity and originality pay off?  Or will the publisher insist we introduce more conventional mechanisms?  We will find out soon.

How does Milestone Week work?

During a the last week of a milestone the way work is planned and executed changes.  People should be running out of scheduled tasks (features) and the move on to working from the MiG (in house web based schedule and time tracking tool) an issues list (currently maintained as an Excel sheet).  Issues are tackled by order of priority, and cover anything that impacts the quality of the deliverable, be it a bug, missing (unplanned) features, or other small changes to improve the game.  And issue could be a 5 minute fix, or a problem that requires a day or more to resolve.

During milestone week there is often a lot of pressure to work longer hours, as the focus is on delivering the highest quality build we can, and there is always room for improvement.  Even if your issue list is clear, there might be other people who you can help.  Overtime is not paid - as is usual in the games industry - but free food is supplied for people who work late.

I'm sorry if this entry is a little short, and perhaps lacking in detail, but as I hope is clear, it is a busy time for me.

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Milestone Week | 28 comments (28 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Issues maintained in an Excel spreadsheet? by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #1 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 04:20:02 AM EST
I weep for your product.

As a tester, milestone week for me is like those scenes in Rambo and similar movies -- when the crazy guy out for revenge is loading and preparing all his weaponry...

don't ask by codemonkey uk (2.00 / 0) #2 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 04:38:52 AM EST
i have no idea why we don't use a proper bug database before alpha

--- Thad ---
Almost as Smart As you.
[ Parent ]
It's like doing version control by file naming. by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #3 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 04:44:42 AM EST
Y'all don't do that. . . Do you?

[ Parent ]
You'd be surprised who does by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #8 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 05:26:47 AM EST
Not just version control by file naming, but via the naming of the zip files.

This is the second job in a row where I've been helping roll out the new version control system. Third such job in the past 5 years.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
I weep for my profession... by greyrat (4.00 / 3) #10 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 05:45:45 AM EST
No wonder I can't get a higher paying job. Nobody wants to hire someone to improve their processes.

[ Parent ]
Why would we /ever/ want to improve by wiredog (4.00 / 2) #13 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 06:08:42 AM EST
our processes? They're <clenched_teeth>fine, dammit!</clenched_teeth>

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
That's a fine Dr. McCoy imitation my friend... by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #14 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 06:28:19 AM EST


[ Parent ]
that's exactly the problem by clover kicker (4.00 / 2) #15 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 06:37:59 AM EST
we're as far as you can get from a profession.

No barriers to entry, no accountability, and absolutely no clout.

[ Parent ]
IAWTP by Herring (4.00 / 2) #22 Fri Feb 20, 2009 at 12:25:50 AM EST
Nobody can argue that computer systems aren't important these days, but companies seem happy to leave it to the sort of person who writes:
DateTime currentTime = DateTime.Parse(DateTime.Now.ToString());
(I found this in our important production system).

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky
[ Parent ]
wtf? by hulver (2.00 / 0) #24 Fri Feb 20, 2009 at 05:01:07 AM EST
Seriously, what on earth would make somebody type that code in?
--
Cheese is not a hat. - clock
[ Parent ]
Bad drugs by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #28 Fri Feb 20, 2009 at 10:11:26 AM EST
Really bad drugs.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
I hope by clover kicker (2.00 / 0) #25 Fri Feb 20, 2009 at 06:09:00 AM EST
that's in a nice tight loop getting executed millions of times a day...

[ Parent ]
I think my head just exploded by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #26 Fri Feb 20, 2009 at 06:10:04 AM EST


Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
I did a webservices project by cam (2.00 / 0) #19 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 09:10:57 AM EST
where the vendor versioned their files in the package names.

cam 
Freedom, liberty, equity and an Australian Republic
[ Parent ]
Projectname-YYYYMMDD-HHMMSS.tgz baby. by dark nowhere (2.00 / 0) #11 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 05:47:58 AM EST
Yeah, don't do that.

Chill out, snowflake.

[ Parent ]
You forgot tenths and hudredths of seconds. by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #12 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 05:50:41 AM EST


[ Parent ]
Enough of that! by dark nowhere (4.00 / 2) #16 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 06:57:48 AM EST
Or it'll be unixtime and you can convert to localtime manually.

Chill out, snowflake.

[ Parent ]
for some reason, by garlic (2.00 / 0) #17 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 07:12:33 AM EST
this seems to be how clearcase manages baselines.


[ Parent ]
No no no! by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #18 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 07:36:50 AM EST
It's Projectname major_version.minor_version.buildYYYYMMDD HHMMSS.zip

As in "Chimaera 4.1.15 20090219 123508.zip"

The spaces are important for making it difficult to use command line tools readability.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
That'd be funny if it weren't true. by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #20 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 11:26:20 AM EST
And you also left out tenths and hundredths of a second too. Those are important to avoid version clashes -- really.

[ Parent ]
That particular file by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #23 Fri Feb 20, 2009 at 02:33:04 AM EST
is actually resident on my hard drive...

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
meh by Merekat (2.00 / 0) #4 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 05:03:27 AM EST
A good PM can operate with some crayons and the back of cereal packets if they have to.
Though generally they prefer not to have to.


[ Parent ]
s/good/crazy/ [nt] by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #5 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 05:06:32 AM EST


[ Parent ]
um by Merekat (2.00 / 0) #6 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 05:13:41 AM EST
They're *all* crazy.


[ Parent ]
Oh, OK. Sorry, I wasn't sure we were in agreement by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #7 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 05:19:25 AM EST


[ Parent ]
Food by duxup (4.00 / 1) #9 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 05:30:02 AM EST
But is it good food?

____
How do TPS reports fit into this process? -nt by chuckles (4.00 / 1) #21 Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 10:09:11 PM EST


"The one absolutely certain way of bringing this nation to ruin [...] would be to permit it to become a tangle of squabbling nationalities"
TP reports? by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #27 Fri Feb 20, 2009 at 06:10:44 AM EST
You'll have to talk to MNS for details on that.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
Milestone Week | 28 comments (28 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback