« Oatmeal

User Stories. I enjoy writing them, and doing so is a significant chunk of my job. I also read a fair number of them. I’ve noticed that a lot of people use the form:

  • As a <type of user> I <some action>.

    While this fulfills the basic goal of a user story, I think it leaves off some important info that helps to contextualize the human aspect of the interaction:

  • As a <type of user> I <some action> so that <some reason or goal>.

While the first form fulfills the basic needs of a user story—describing the interaction between person and application—it doesn’t offer much insight into why the person is doing whatever it is that they’re doing. While this info isn’t always directly relevant to the application, I think providing that info to developer is important because it a) reminds the developer that they’re making something for a person, and not just solving some abstract problem, and b) that the problem being solved usually exists within a larger context.

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