Project Development Meeting (KB)- Minutes 5/7/06

1. Minutes of last meeting

The minutes of the last meeting were accepted.

2. Approved projects

The currently approved projects were briefly discussed to:

  • Monitor progress of the projects.
  • Help determine requirements for the project tracking system.

The discussions of the individual projects are noted on the DevelopmentMeetingInterimProjects page.
[ACTION] project leaders to take appropriate action on any comments against individual projects.

It was agreed that we should indicate the current stage of each active project (as defined by the DevelopmentMeetingProcedures) and the next milestone (with timescales where appropriate) on the summary page.
[ACTION] All project leaders to update the information on the DevelopmentMeetingInterimProjects page to include this.
(Paul has reformatted this page to make it easier to structure this information, with a view to eventually including it in some automatic system).

It was agreed that stage 7 (development) was rather vague, and that the project proposal should define a number of milestones at which the project would be reviewed during development. Each of these milestones (and the project completion itself) should have timescales assigned at the evaluation stage (except for those project which have no timescales, or are already past the appropriate stages).
[ACTION] Paul to update the procedures to reflect this.
[ACTION] All project leaders to define appropriate milestones, with timescales, and list these on project summary page.

Some projects (eg. the new building) do not appear to fit the "project" model very well.
[ACTION] Paul will raise the question of what to do with these at CEG.

The criteria for project "acceptance" were unclear. Paul clarified that projects would need to satisfy "customer" requirements, technical peer review, and appropriate documentation.
[ACTION] Paul to clarify this in the project procedures.

3. Project management software

There was a long discussion of the requirements for the project management software. This software is intended to provide an overview management of all the projects (rather than the details) and to provide an opportunity for users to see, and comment on, all the active and proposed projects. A number of points were raised:

  • The system must be "lightweight" and easy to use. Since we would like to encourage frequent updates, it may be worth spending extra effort up front (if necessary) to create a system which was easier to use.
  • The unusual requirements, and the need for flexibility suggest that some local software development will be required, although we do not want to prejudge this, and a survey of existing applications is probably worthwhile.
  • We need to be able to record the history of projects and development. The interim Wiki & external link system does not do this.

[ACTION] Ken to provide a Wiki page for people to contribute their requirements/thoughts on the necessary software.
[ACTION] Ken to discuss requirements with Paul and provide a more detailed proposal for next meeting. (subsequent comment: Paul will be away from the end of July, so this should be agree before then).

There was an aside discussion on modern technologies for development of Web applications. In many cases, these would provide a much quicker way of building (better) applications, but there is an initial steep learning curve. It was not clear which unit was responsible for keeping up to date in this area, and if/how we might develop this. [ACTION] Paul to take this issue to CEG.

4. New project proposals

There were no new project proposals.

5. AOB

Roger raised the question of user involvement in the project process.
[ACTION] Paul to advertise the existence of the project pages as soon as we feel that we have a reasonable understanding of how things should work.

Topic revision: r1 - 06 Jul 2006 - 12:13:45 - PaulAnderson
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