Here's a thought about the #NoEstimates conversation. One of the phrases in the early days of the internet - yes I was there. I was a user of Archie to find file content and move those files using ARPANet from the Air Force Avionics Laboratory at Wright Patterson AFB in Dayton, Ohio, where we were simplay amazed that we could move a file sitting on a disk in Redondo Beach to our DEC 10 in the lab.
One of the phrases around the reality of those days was...
This does not scale
So now the Big Question
If there are software development projects that can be executed without knowing how much it will cost in the end (an open ended spend plan), or projects where the budget is capped (a Not To Exceed Number) and we don't really need to know the upper bound of the features to be delivered, how large can this notion scale?
In other words, let's assume for the moment that the advocates of #NoEstimates, there are domains and contexts within those domains that not having an estimate of the final cost or duration is acceptable.
- What are those domains?
- What are the size of those projects in dollars, staff, duration?
So is there a scaling limit to #NoEstimates? If so, what is it?