Spec is the tool for program managers to communicate with others – developers, test engineers, peer PMs, the remote team located on Mars, etc.

A spec is often started from a “Page-one” stage. On this stage, you’re answering some questions to yourself:

  • What’s this feature?
  • Why we bother to implement it?
  • How to measure that we succefully done it?
  • How the users will be using it?

I’m not experienced enough to make it a big topic but I want to share a tip which sometimes makes my spec look better:

When I look at my page-one spec over and over again, I would imagine that the spec is telling a story to a stranger. If the stranger gets the points, the spec is good. If not, the spec fails.

If it doesn’t feel real enough, I would try to explain to some guys not from a same team in the way I spec’ed. If they can understand, the spec works.

So this is my first Spec 101: Page one for strangers.


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