Mind the Gap: Addressing Ambiguity in Requirements

The lesson of the Tower of Babel, possibly the first post-project review in historical records, is that communication failure within the team will cause project failure. In today’s projects, often staffed by cross-functional teams spread across the globe, the communication challenge persists.  

What the customer wanted

Complexity in problem definition, solution and design tool architecture, organizational structures and market forces demand agility and constant risk assessment. According to the Project Management Institute (PMI), of the two in five projects that fail to meet business objectives, half traced the cause of failure to ineffective communications. In software development projects these typically include incomplete or changing requirement specifications, and lack of user input.  

Don’t assume that all project stakeholders have the same understanding of the term “requirements”. A broad ranging definition is: Requirements are a specification of what should be implemented. They are descriptions of how the system should behave, or of a system property or attribute. They may be a constraint on the development process of the system. A non-functional requirement should define how well the system must do what it does.   


Gateway Technical College Graduate Discusses the Benefits of Building a Native Mobile App Using RPG

Last week I shared with you a candid conversation I had with Jim Buck, Software Development Program instructor at Gateway Technical College, about his Advanced RPG class’s final project. Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to one of Jim’s students, Jeremey Rodriguez. He’s a recent graduate of Gateway and holds an Associate’s Degree in Software Development. Jeremey is responsible for producing the YouTube video that features his team’s final project – a flight reservation mobile app created using LongRange, LANSA’s native mobile app development tool. Continue reading “Gateway Technical College Graduate Discusses the Benefits of Building a Native Mobile App Using RPG” »


Gateway Technical College Students Plan, Build and Deliver Native Mobile Apps Using Their RPG Skills

If you asked me what I loved about my college experience I’ll tell you “everything.” What I didn't anticipate was the bond I’d establish with my professors and the desire to remain in touch with them post-graduation. Recently I had the opportunity to speak with Jim Buck, instructor at Gateway Technical College, and felt a similar vibe with him as I’d experienced with so many of my professors at St. Ambrose University. He’s funny, honest and has a rolodex of stories to share – all characteristics students are drawn to.

Jim is one of three instructors that make up the Software Developer Program at Gateway and teaches a series of programming classes to students of all ages. Every year Jim requires his Advanced RPG class to complete a final project that involves building a Web or mobile application. To his surprise a team of six students decided to display the fruits of their labor on YouTube. Project leader, Jeremey Rodriguez, developed a video of the mobile application he and his team built using LongRange, LANSA’s native mobile application development tool.

Continue reading “Gateway Technical College Students Plan, Build and Deliver Native Mobile Apps Using Their RPG Skills” »


EU Regulation 1169/2011 Continued…

Last week  in my blog post entitled EU Regulation 1169/2011 and its Influence on US Manufacturers and Retailers, I provided an overview of the directive and its impact on the supply chain. Today I'll dive into the challenges manufacturers and retailers will face along with how to be EU 1169/2011 compliant.

Upcoming Challenges in Your Supply Chain

Managing and administering product attributes

EU 1169/2011 says that specific nutritional information must be accessible by the consumer prior to being available for purchase online. Nutritional information relating to a product is most commonly consolidated on product packaging. When purchasing a product in store a consumer is able to view this information and make a buying decision based upon that content. In an online environment a consumer does not have access to the same level of information and this law brings the two experiences together. Continue reading “EU Regulation 1169/2011 Continued…” »


EU Regulation 1169/2011 and its Influence on US Manufacturers and Retailers

Dubbed the “golden age of supermarkets” the 1960’s were a time of change for the industry. Advancements in store design, the evolution of discounting and the addition of in-store pharmacies enhanced the shopping experience.During this period, approximately 8,000 items lined the shelves of a typical supermarket. Fast forward 50 years and today, stores average 42,000 items in addition to a complete listing of products online.

The explosion in product offerings coupled with the evolution of technology has transformed the decision making processes and buying behavior of consumers. Online retailers, retail websites and mobile apps make accessibility to product information easier than ever before. While consumers are benefiting from the availability of product information and additional shopping choices, manufacturers and retailers are finding it increasingly difficult to accurately manage the sheer volume of product data. Continue reading “EU Regulation 1169/2011 and its Influence on US Manufacturers and Retailers” »