Estimation is the process of finding an estimate, or approximation, which is a value that is usable for some purpose even if input data may be incomplete, uncertain, or unstable.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

9
votes
3answers
686 views

Is there a relation factor between meeting time and saving development time?

I am working on a project and we have regular (usually weekly), informal meetings, where we discuss the status of the project and the GUI of it. I'm the only developer there, the other 4-5 people ...
3
votes
3answers
74 views

How should we quote differing sized contracts in a SCRUM environment

I am trying to implement an agile-ish approach to our firm. Right now we have a very much waterfall like approach to designing, coding, testing, and releasing. One major issue we haven't found an ...
19
votes
3answers
534 views

Has research been done on the effectiveness of Planning Poker as an estimation technique?

Although it is a commonly held opinion that planning poker improves the accuracy of project estimations (a small sample of which demonstrated on this question), has any defined research been done on ...
113
votes
21answers
5k views

Is there a way to combat Sales perpetually overcommitting? [closed]

I seem to be repeatedly stuck in a situation where release dates are set not based on anything technical, but because someone in Sales has committed to a customer by then. Based on discussions with ...
7
votes
2answers
208 views

How can I make a boss (or colleague) be more careful when estimating the complexity of a task/project?

I am a software developer, and I work in a small web development company. It seems to be a recurring theme that a middle-manager will ask me how long something will take, and when I give them my ...
55
votes
4answers
2k views

How to explain to a non-technical person why the task will take much longer than they think?

Almost every developer has to answer questions from business side like: Why is going to take 2 days to add this simple contact form? When a developer estimates this task, they may divide it into ...
29
votes
9answers
3k views

Why are deadlines always so short? [duplicate]

I'm a junior developer in a small company (in a team of 2 developers). Everytime we are asked to implement a new feature: the deadline is set so that we just have time to do the development: there ...
8
votes
5answers
293 views

Are bargaining and beat down attempts on Scrum estimations legitimate parts of the process?

I noticed in scrum meetings, that developers often give realistic estimations on stories. However, even rather simple stories need a lot efforts for configuration, setting up third party components, ...
0
votes
3answers
304 views

What to tell a manager who tells your estimates are too much for a genuine task [duplicate]

My manager keeps complaining that the estimates we have come up with are too much for the customer — every time he asks us to think like a customer and see whether the estimate is valid, but my point ...
4
votes
5answers
200 views

Why are we anyway doing Software Estimation knowing it is broken? [duplicate]

This is one SW development problem that hits the sea of developers as they crash into the rocks of management. Somewhere down the line the estimate given by the programmer gets translated to a date ...
2
votes
2answers
7k views

Closest Point of Approach (CPA) mathematical formula in ship radar

I was recently searching for the mathematical formula to find closest point of approach (CPA) between one ship and another ship. I need to apply the formula in my radar ship program and I can't find ...
31
votes
8answers
17k views

Scrum - how to carry over a partially complete User Story to the next Sprint without skewing the backlog

We're using Scrum and occasionally find that we can't quite finish a User Story in the sprint in which it was planned. In true Scrum style, we ship the software anyway and consider including the User ...
4
votes
2answers
86 views

Concrete alternatives to inverse relationship between project completion time and number of developers?

Background It is now well understood (if not always well communicated) that the following logic does not apply to software development project estimates: A project that would take 1 developer 12 ...
-2
votes
2answers
189 views

How to know if I'm slow or fast at programming?

I understand that it's extremely depends on a particular case, but I really would like to know at least roughly how long a specific task can take for completion to average programmer. Is there any ...
3
votes
3answers
562 views

Can I trust the Basic Schedule Equation?

I've been reading Steve McConnell's Software Estimation: Demystifying the Black Art book, and he gives an equation for estimating nominal schedule based on Person-months of effort: ScheduleInMonths = ...
-2
votes
1answer
91 views

Complicated constant in “The Software Equation”?

Why are the constants in The Software Equation so complicated? Here is the equation. where E = Project effort measured in person-months or person-years LOC =Lines of Code estimate for the ...
6
votes
2answers
944 views

Is it okay to add time for “unexpected delays” to a time estimate?

I've landed my first contract (hooray, self employment!) and the company is asking for time estimates. Programmers are notoriously bad at time estimates, and I know I've been laughably wrong ...
2
votes
4answers
145 views

In Scrum, are story points assigned at different planning poker sessions worth the same?

As far as I understand, a planning poker session usually is started by picking one item and assigning it a value (say, 1). This item will then serve as a reference for the rest of the session. From ...
2
votes
2answers
410 views

What is a good way to make estimates clear to the customer?

So me and my team have been doing estimates for a new project but we have been getting the feeling lately that the customer has trouble understanding not the estimates in itself but what the stories ...
379
votes
14answers
109k views

How to respond when you are asked for an estimate?

We, as programmers, are constantly being asked 'How long will it take'? And you know, the situation is almost always like this: The requirements are unclear. Nobody has done an in depth analysis of ...
2
votes
3answers
127 views

Requirements and Documentation in Agile

My company has recently started to take on smaller software development projects. Typically small web applications to be used on a client's intranet. They are usually 3-5 months work in total. ...
15
votes
3answers
15k views

Which string search algorithm is actually the fastest?

I have been stuck for some time on which is the fastest string search algorithm, heard many opinions, but in the end I'm not sure. I have heard some people saying that the fastest algorithm is ...
2
votes
2answers
85 views

How to include estimating and its effect on prioritization with Kanban?

I've read in several sources about Kanban. Using Atlassian's description as my current main source of information about how it works, I wonder how the effects of estimations on prioritization should ...
4
votes
2answers
114 views

Estimating in groups - How to extract useful statistics / estimates?

As many other projects we have to estimate our jira tasks up front. This is obviously not fun and I've started hacking on a simple webapp to "gameify" this tedious process. My idea is that an issue ...
27
votes
13answers
2k views

Sales Manager: “Why is time-estimation so complex?” [duplicate]

A few days ago a sales manager asked me that question. But at this moment I didn't know a answer which he can understand. He isn't a programmer! At the moment I work on a product which is over 8 ...
0
votes
3answers
138 views

When estimating with a fresh team on a new project, is there a reason not to use default velocity for estimating?

Generally when estimating using an Agile points system on an experienced project team, the points have meaning relative based on past experience - that take into account: understanding of the ...
4
votes
2answers
120 views

What document/artifact should alert me when an old requirement changes the scope of new one?

I developed a software application a year ago, I delivered it with a simple documentation. For example, it has an special and complicated login system as requirement. Now the customer calls and ask ...
3
votes
1answer
199 views

COCOMO II SLOC count for web application development

What type of SLOC do you take into account for estimating web application development projects with COCOMO II? For instance, suppose you have to estimate a web application project that will probably ...
4
votes
1answer
195 views

Misunderstanding about “Evidence Based Scheduling” in estimation tasks

I read the Spolsky blog the post with title "Evidence based scheduling" (http://www.joelonsoftware.com/items/2007/10/26.html) but I don't understand the mechanism to predict and estimate ...
0
votes
1answer
88 views

Do I need to estimate maintenance software issues? [closed]

The PM of the company I work on, always asks me to estimate maintenance issues and since there are several legacy systems that I didn't build, makes this hard to get. He says getting estimations for ...
30
votes
9answers
4k views

What should I do when waiting for a review?

Before asking my question, I must explain the situation. I'm working for a company as a junior software engineer. One of the seniors always stops me when I have finished my development and want to ...
3
votes
1answer
47 views

How can I get the transit time for packets for a jitter buffer?

I'm trying to wrap my head around the concept of a real jitter buffer. I'm basing the only knowledge that I have around this article: http://toncar.cz/Tutorials/VoIP/VoIP_Basics_Jitter.html This ...
3
votes
2answers
160 views

How to deal with outlier programmers during sprint planning?

It is generally accepted that the best programmers produce at least an order of magnitude more than average ones. This seems like it would cause problems with the usual approaches to sprint planning ...
24
votes
10answers
2k views

How to add a new developer to the team

I run a small company composed of only 2 developers. We are building a very big application for one of our clients. Development on this project has gone on for 1.5 years. Now this client has secured ...
4
votes
4answers
338 views

Estimating scrum points for non cross-functional team

We are working to transition our development team to be more Agile. I have a question about story point estimation and their relationship to an individual's skill. The scenario is that our team ...
13
votes
6answers
1k views

Time estimating of a complex bug investigation (not a straight-forward one) [duplicate]

(It is not a duplicate: Bug investigation is much more non-deterministic than a defined development task where things to be done are specified. Investigation is about narrowing a huge search space, ...
5
votes
6answers
578 views

How does agile estimate the time required for a “research phase”?

According to canonical agile development, what is the appropriate amount of learning that an engineer should engage in before implementing a solution to a problem? If an engineer knows she is too ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Good examples for teaching software estimation (size, schedule, effort)? [closed]

I'm going to be teaching a class that covers a broad brush of estimation techniques. I intend to cover absolute estimation techniques based on SLOC (e.g. Function Points, COCOMO II etc.) and ...
52
votes
5answers
2k views

How can you estimate time for tasks which primarily consist of figuring out a problem?

While it is relatively possible for an experienced developer to estimate how long it will take to implement code when the pattern and problem the code is solving is well understood, how can you make a ...
3
votes
2answers
421 views

Should we estimate tasks during backlog grooming?

I was just taken by surprise in a backlog grooming meeting when we assigned time estimates to BA, dev, and QA tasks...but the story is not yet scheduled in any sprint and we are not yet assigning ...
0
votes
2answers
251 views

How to budget for a programmer you're not ready to hire yet? [closed]

I am trying to work up a budget for an app, specifically a budget for hiring a third-party programmer to add a specific feature, and I'm trying to figure out how to get a decent number. The ...
8
votes
6answers
816 views

Software cost estimation [closed]

I've seen on my work place (a University) most students making the software estimation cost of their final diploma work using COCOMO. My guessing is that this way of estimating costs is somewhat old ...
3
votes
1answer
6k views

Scrum: Capacity vs Velocity when planning a sprint

We have completed 11 sprints so far in our current project. In most sprints we have not been burning down well and usually finish with our velocity gradient flattening as we approach the end of the ...
-1
votes
2answers
251 views

Estimation of space is required to store 275305224 of 5x5 MagicSquares? [closed]

Here are some examples of 5x5 Magic Squares found by some good solvers : Magic Square Generator by Marcel Roos this program state using 2.4GHz Intel takes about 95 hours to generate all solutions. ...
2
votes
5answers
675 views

Scrum task over estimation

In my current company we're using Scrum with 2 week iterations and a regular planning session. How planning normally works in our company is that we take a predefined , prioritized (by PO before the ...
32
votes
14answers
1k views

Boss doesn't believe my time estimate… advice/backup? [duplicate]

I'm working at a startup software company -- 3 developers, less than 15 employees including the CEO. We deal exclusively with Windows Mobile, the .NET CF, and passing the information gathered from our ...
0
votes
0answers
52 views

Alternatives to binding cost quotes of indefinite projects

I work for a custom software house. We have clients with yearly budget allocations. They often have excess funds they need to spend before the next fiscal period, but only a general idea of what they ...
3
votes
4answers
216 views

Point estimates scale skewed

When using planning poker for estimates, we've ended up with effectively a non-linear points scale. By that I mean that point value is inconsistent for one-pointers and, say, eight-pointers. Couple ...
1
vote
3answers
195 views

How to set more accurate “deadlines”? [duplicate]

Context: My work is to build financial reports using mostly Excel spreadsheets. This consists mostly of formulas and a good deal of VBA. Each person is built by a single person. We service many ...
7
votes
6answers
425 views

Project estimation with increasing requirements

Making a project estimation with given a requirements set is one thing. But, what happens when the user suddenly starts changing them on the fly and starts adding new requirements to the already ...