Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Working in "Verticals"

I am currently wrapping up my time contracting/consulting to a company building a POS system in CAB.
Long story short the team seems to divide work in to verticals. i.e. can you build this piece of functionality.. the MVC components, the services, the persistence, everything. I really find it odd. I have raised the issue a couple of times and the team assures me that the system is so intermingled that you couldn’t possibly work in "horizontals" i.e. tiers. This has caused, IMO, a huge number of issues, including redundant work, rework and re-rework as people don't "get" certain patterns or reason for the code. It also means a Graphics guy is handling the DB and the DAL.
To be honest I would have put the juniors at the front end. They could have learnt all about MVC, Win forms, CAB with its dependency injection (of sorts) events & delegates... that’s plenty to take in for people new to C# and .net!!!
A proper DBA should have been in charge of the DB. Instead developers have clearly written it. Normalisation in my mind is generally a good thing. DB schema changes weeks out from release are not, especially when a DBA out of college could have spotted most of the mistakes.
The the intermediate & snr dev work on DAL, Services and business logic while the Lead (there never was an architect) focus on architecture, framework and code reviews.
Making mistakes is not always a bad thing, but you have to learn from them to get anything out of it. Perhaps I am not doing my job well enough if they still don’t get it. :(

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