[unrev-II] brief comment on use cases

From: Eugene Eric Kim (eekim@eekim.com)
Date: Tue May 16 2000 - 01:38:30 PDT

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    Use Cases are a formal methodology (part of the UML) for capturing and
    expressing the interaction between a system and its actors (users). Each
    use case is generally a simple subject/predicate statement describing this
    interaction, with an extended narrative explaining this interaction in
    more detail. (I haven't read any of the books devoted entirely to Use
    Cases, but a great introduction to UML in general is Martin Fowler's UML

    In the case of the OHS, we essentially have two levels of use
    cases. First, we have the use cases of the system at a somewhat low
    level, such as those listed in Eric's requirement documents. Second,
    because we have decided to target our initial efforts on the software
    development process, we have higher-level use cases, such as those listed
    on Lee's web page.

    I've gone through both Eric and Lee's documents and have compiled a list
    of use cases -- one for the OHS in a software development context, and one
    for the OHS for general collaborative knowledge work. I've also compiled
    a list of use cases for licensing. I will send out these lists to this
    list within the next day or so, and once our Zope server is up, I will
    post there as well.

    These are the things we need to do with these lists:

    1. Critique the lists: add new use cases, reword or remove existing use

    2. Flesh out the use cases. This will be the more difficult task, but the
    process of doing this collaboratively will help us design the
    OHS. (Indeed, one of the use cases for software development is, "Develop
    Use Cases.") I will flesh out a few of the use cases and e-mail them out
    so they can be used as a starting point for discussion, and so that we
    can use them as models for fleshing out the other use cases.

    I know that Jack and Eric tried doing this on the list before with
    limited success. I hope the difference this time around -- even before we
    have the Zope stuff set up -- will be that (a) we have a better intuitive
    sense of the overall system, (b) the lists will serve as needed context
    for these use cases, and (c) we'll be fleshing some of these out in
    physical meetings, which should help move the process to the point where
    it's more feasible for people to discuss them online (i.e. bootstrap).


    +=== Eugene Eric Kim ===== eekim@eekim.com ===== http://www.eekim.com/ ===+
    |       "Writer's block is a fancy term made up by whiners so they        |
    +=====  can have an excuse to drink alcohol."  --Steve Martin  ===========+

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