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Web-Based Software Project Portals trends

Good article in Dr. Dobb's : Tools for Teams: A Survey of Web-Based Software Project Portals
It was pointed by the Modeling Languages Blog. Usually the blog is about UML, DSL, MDSD and such. But they personally participated to the study, so ...

It is well written. They take objectivity very seriously. and I would like to highlight some points:
  • "project portals would merge or integrate with social networking tools such as LinkedIn and personal life management tools such as Google Calendar." I strongly believe that it will happen. I see many trends to put everything (the code, the IDE ...) on-line and then search, connect and socialize. I wouldn't be surprised if someone came with a catchy name for this trend.
  • "we now wonder about the real importance of requirements elicitation and structured development process in the success of a development project". A direct result of Agile : Requirements are managed more efficiently and teams structure their processes to what fit them best.
  • "One clear trend in the portals ... was providing a hosted service." It will take some time, but enterprises will realize that their data are more secure and reliable within a well maintained application than behind their dumb firewall.
  • "...the portals were built ... to allow ... teams to scale up and ... spread out geographically. We believe this explains why they emphasize asynchronous communication (e.g., bulletin boards) over synchronous (e.g., chat)." I have a mixed feeling about this point. Some believe that teams could be just the temporary collaboration of highly specialized and efficient individuals. I doubt that it really works. Certainly the goal is to remove frontiers for developers. But face to face communication is still crucial for a team.
  • they "mainly target agile teams" and "none explicitly encouraged more traditional development processes". Looks like Agile has no competitors, but changing is hard. (By the way listen to all Linda Rising episodes : her voice is perfect for radio.)

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