February 3, 2012

Squeezing another project in

February 3, 2012 - Categories: work

Down to 11 business days before I leave IBM for my experiment in entrepreneurship. My manager wants to know if I can squeeze in working on a non-profit project and helping a developer learn Drupal skills on top of my current project, which is now in user acceptance testing. I say yes. There’s time to help people learn, and time to reduce the risk of future projects. My notes and braindumping and last-minute improvements to extracurricular interests can wait.

I needed to revise the documents of understanding. I had originally estimated and scoped the project assuming that it would be done by a developer with both experience in Drupal, familiarity with the particular nonprofit’s needs, and a thorough understanding of the codebase. This project involves making a site more configurable so that other organizations can deploy it easily. It will be used as a pattern for five or more sites, with the first ideally coming online this year.

To accommodate the risks, I simplified the tasks we planned to do, and reorganized the items in order to fit the timeline. As neat as it would be, we probably won’t need an installation profile or a distribution for five or so instances. I put the most complex tasks up first, before I leave, so that we can power through them with pair programming. With any luck, we’ll be able to complete the crucial parts of it before I go, and the remaining developer will be familiar enough with the key parts of the code to continue. She can turn to one of our coworkers for mentoring.

In the meantime, I’ve been checking tasks off my other project: mostly styling, with some minor content and functionality tweaks. The project manager is impressed because I get things back to her so quickly. I tell her I might work part-time on this and add another project over the next two weeks, which should be fine given the rate at which we find and fix the tasks for this one.

Looks like I might not be able to take that half-day of vacation after all. <laugh> No big deal – it’s all for an excellent cause, and maybe I can get the practice admin to have it paid out instead. Good to be making things happen!