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order and chaos



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June 29, 2006 3:10 pm

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we got a lot of feedback after we announced the availability of Designer 1.2RC1 and RC2. most of the comments came from customers who were confused that we release a 1.2 version as an update to a 2.0M2 milestone. here comes the reasoning behind the version order and chaos:

Designer releases iteratively. this means at the beginning of each major release development cycle we define what the scope for this major release is. a major release is 1.0 or 2.0 etc. this initial scope is just a rough idea gathering and setting goals to say something like: in Designer 2.0 we want to see Version Control and Staging as the two major new feature areas and we want to improve our overall user experience etc.
then we break down this rough scope into milestones. this is where the iterations come in. so we broke Designer 2.0 into 7 milestones where M7 will be 2.0. we then get loaded at the beginning of each milestone and scope this milestone out in detail. usually beside our rough goals, we get A LOT of additional feedback from our customers which we try to absorb into one of the milestones. then we implement the milestone and get loaded for the next. we roughly fix about 500 bugs per milestone and get about 100 enhancements in.

now what happened with 2.0 M3 and 1.2:

at the time we scoped out Designer 2.0, there were no official plans for another official Designer release before 2.0. that’s why we made the decision to start working on something called 2.0 at the beginning of this calendar year. but then, as things evolved, it turned out that we had to release another supported release of Designer together with IDM 3.0.1 (SP1). now since we develop iteratively, we don’t branch our code base (at least we try notto branch if ever possible). so we basically had to put SP1 specific changes into our running 2.0 trunk. looking at what’s new in SP1, it really would not make sense to release a Designer 2.0 just for Spitfire SP1 and we would not have any of our 2.0 main features in by then anyway. so we decided to do a marketing version 1.2 and release 2.0 M3 as 1.2 to the public so that it makes sense to the end customer who got 1.1 with IDM 3.0 and will now get 1.2 with IDM 3.0.1.

we are thinking of including a build number in the future so you could see what our “real” version is versus the marketing version. really, don’t put too much weight into the marketing version. it’s just a name.

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