templates which focus on capturing the minimal, critical information that you require in a document can be very useful. It is a mistake to use documentation as your primary means of communication because it's far too easy to misunderstand something that has been written, but it is a good supporting mechanism. Agile development methods attempt to improve the software development process, so that we can deliver useful solutions more often, and more quickly. Craig Larman has also developed descriptions of working with RUP in an agile style in his popular introductory book on OO design. As a result Alistair sees Crystal as requiring less discipline than extreme programming, trading off less efficiency for a greater habitability and reduced chances of failure. An effective middle ground is to capture information throughout the project as it stabilizes. By doing so the specification actually provides value to the audience Capture high-level information in documentation, not details.
Test-driven development which in effect produces executable specifications) provide greater payback than writing documentation? My experience with RUP is that its problem is its infinite variability. This is the fundamental issue that you need to grapple with -any time spent creating documentation is time spent not developing new functionality for your users. At the same time, many architecture processes are seen as slow, clumsy and bureaucratic. At the beginning of your project ask yourself what you think you're going to need based on the nature of your project. Figure 6 depicts the typical strategies towards documentation for both traditional and Agile development, the curves representing the total amount of effort invested to date in writing documentation. Documentation is one way to communicate but it isn't the best way. In doing so, we must take a much more sophisticated view than simply prioritising the delivery of software to the users. At the end of that trial period they would stop and decide if they wanted to carry on with any of the ideas or revert to the previous way of working. Detailed architecture and design models, or references to them, may also be included where appropriate. A better approach is for the developer to write the initial version of documentation and then hand it off to a technical writer for clean-up.
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