How to Xeo?
What makes XeoDev different?
Aug 7, 2019 | XEO
"Xeo: Innovative ideas that have yet to be discovered; All knowing of what is yet to be discovered" - Urban Dictionary
XeoWe always double check Urban Dictionary while researching a brand name. Sometimes the definition on Urban Dictionary causes that brand name to be discarded. Not in this case. We absolutely love how well the definition describes who we are and what we love to do. If you can hold your peace while in the chaos which surrounds new projects, there are many new ideas ready to be discovered and brought forth. Our CTO, David Sharpe, has chosen XEO as his official title. It goes well with his 19 granted patents and constant flow of novel ideas.
The Xeo PathThe Xeo Path is a path forward out of the initial chaos toward a profitable business. We incorporate many aspects of Lean Startup, Agile Development, and the Software Development Life Cycle. But these alone are not enough so we add a few of our own few special ingredients.
The technical spec is a hallmark of the Xeo Path. During his 18 years at Microsoft, David wrote numerous hundred page technical spec documents and worked through peer review and execution. In fact one day he went to save a technical spec and realized he had already written that spec a month ago - oops ! This technical spec is a very detailed document which clearly describes the use cases, designs for both ux and database, core algorithms, user roles, user notifications, user content uploads and the other elements pertaining to the successful execution of this project.
The spec writing process uncovers a million little questions which are discussed within XeoDev and with the client. As these questions are answered, new features stack up in the potential scope list and these are triaged to decide of scope will expand or if they will be delayed to a future milestone. This process takes about a month and brings Windex level clarity to the project. Many potential change requests are all gathered and discussed up front, leading to transparent pricing; Many branding details are raised and solved prior to code start; Many test cases are explored together to design solutions from the very beginning in the spirit of Test Driven Development (TDD).
Trello status is the signpost of the Xeo Path. Like the departure board at the airport, trello is always up to date, alerts task owners immediately when the task is updated and provides a simple method to implement the four eyes pricipal - to get four eyes requires two people, having two people signing off on every task provides a simple accountability framework and raises questions and concerns early and often. This breaks the project free from the tyranny of the Friday morning status email. That email just encourages email responses instead of using Trello to raise issues. Thinking about email for project management - you know how that works: the email mentions 10 questions, the response answers 3 and raises 2 more, the second response discusses those 5 and the initial set of 10 questions is now totally lost. The Xeo Path solution is to make 10 cards on Trello and discuss each issue as a separate card for triage in the same stack.