Project must run at warp speed



  • I'm reading through a spec for an enhancement of an existing asp.net system. It is already quite slow because of the sheer burden of all the business requirements.

    I just came across this jem:

    The performance of the system should as far as
    possible be fast enough to avoid interrupting the users’ flow of thought.


    I wonder how we benchmark how fast the users think. On the upside, the users are government employees, so I guess the system doesn't have to be too fast after all.



  • Bonus points for spotting the grammatical error.



  • I thought that the most obvious error was the baseless assumption that users are capable of having thoughts.



  • @asuffield said:

    Bonus points for spotting the grammatical error.
    [quote user="RayS"]I thought that the most obvious error was the baseless assumption that users are capable of having thoughts.[/quote]
    That's exactly it: there's only a single thought to go around.



  • Wow, they copied our specs. 



  • @phelyan said:

    Wow, they copied our specs.

    All of them? 

     

    But in any case, I'm not sure how much of a WTF it is to want a responsive application. It's a little ill-defined, but I'd say that any interaction with this application should provide some instantaneous feedback, preferrably instant completion of the function (calling a dialog), but at least progress bars, throbbers and Loading... signs that appear quickly. Any lag up to 1/10th of a second should be avoided & prevented.

    But that seems reasonable to ask of any application. 🙂



  • @deadcat said:


    I wonder how we benchmark how fast the users think. On the upside, the users are government employees, so I guess the system doesn't have to be too fast after all.

     

    Awwwwwww...

     

    Its all an excuse. This way they can say, we don't want to make it TOO fast, thats why its slow, any faster than user's chain of though is interrupted. And since they are government employees the app has to be pretty slow... SEE IT WORKS BY ALL LOGIC! 



  • Although it's worded funnily, I totally agree with the concept. One thing I hate about working in Windows is that my train of thought is constantly being interrupted by meaningless alerts ad helpful animated objects and other such things. I may have something similar to ADD that makes it really easy for me to forget what I'm doing, and Windows grabs that predisposition and tugs.



  • A manager at my last job famously told one of the developers that he had to "morph at light speed" to keep up with ever-changing customer requirements.  Many Power Rangers jokes ensued.



  • One manager once told us all that, in order to release on time, we should all
    "work faster then humanly possible"



  • @deadcat said:

    I'm reading through a spec for an enhancement of an existing asp.net system. It is already quite slow because of the sheer burden of all the business requirements.

    I just came across this jem:

    The performance of the system should as far as
    possible be fast enough to avoid interrupting the users’ flow of thought.


    I wonder how we benchmark how fast the users think. On the upside, the users are government employees, so I guess the system doesn't have to be too fast after all.

    This is a common issue with performance requirements.  I've asked our Product Manager how fast a particular financial function should be.  His response was "uhm, fast?".  This isn't entirely his fault either.  In some systems, it isn't obvious what is fast enough.  He doesn't know how long a 10 million iteration Monte Carlo simulation of a 25 year, quarterly Asian option should take.  He just knows that users don't want to sit there staring at their screen for 45 minutes while our app chews CPU cycles and thrashes memory.  He doesn't what it to be slow, but doesn't know how long it should really take.   It is very technical as to why it takes a certain amount of time, and he doesn't want to impose an unreasonable requirement.

    In this case though, I suspect that the writer of the requirement really wasn't sure of what he was talking about.  Most performance specs are "make it, like, you know, fast!".

    pedant mode ON

    Isn't it gem?

    pedant mode OFF
     



  • @rbowes said:

    Although it's worded funnily, I totally agree with the concept. One thing I hate about working in Windows is that my train of thought is constantly being interrupted by meaningless alerts ad helpful animated objects and other such things. I may have something similar to ADD that makes it really easy for me to forget what I'm doing, and Windows grabs that predisposition and tugs.

     It's called "stopping the proceedings with idiocy". It's a UI design fault common to many programs.  Basically, you're working along and

     

    YOU HAVE NOW LOADED THIS MESSAGE

                            OK 

     

    your train of thought gets interrupted with a dialog box that has nothing to do with you anyway.
     



  • rbowes: Although it's worded funnily, I totally agree with the concept. One thing I hate about working in Windows is that

    This is a WEB app - so apparently they want me to control the speed of the users internet.



  • They're government employees. Of course they all share a single thought like the interchangablel worker ants they are.



  • @asuffield said:

    Bonus points for spotting the grammatical error.

     

    Besides the one already mentioned ("users' flow of thought" which should be the more awkward but correct "users' flows of thought") there's the stylistic kludge of "should (as far as possible) be" - splitting up a verbal phrase with a prepositional phrase. Dunno if that's an error, but hey, never hurts to err on the side of caution.



  • @tmountjr said:

    ("users' flow of thought" which should be the more awkward but correct "users' flows of thought")

    Or the far simpler "user's flow of thought". 'User' is already a metasyntactic variable, there's no need to emphasise this with extra plurality.



  • @asuffield said:

    @tmountjr said:

    ("users' flow of thought" which should be the more awkward but correct "users' flows of thought")

    Or the far simpler "user's flow of thought". 'User' is already a metasyntactic variable, there's no need to emphasise this with extra plurality.

    I'd say "users' flow" is grammatically correct, but (incorrectly) implies that all users think alike. 



  • @vt_mruhlin said:

    @asuffield said:
    @tmountjr said:

    ("users' flow of thought" which should be the more awkward but correct "users' flows of thought")

    Or the far simpler "user's flow of thought". 'User' is already a metasyntactic variable, there's no need to emphasise this with extra plurality.

    I'd say "users' flow" is grammatically correct, but (incorrectly) implies that all users think alike. 

    It depends on whether you're trying to talk about the flow of thought of any arbitrary user, the flows of thought of all users, or the flow of thought shared by all users. Since we can discount the latter as an error, we can presume that the author meant the second and made a grammatical error, but the first would be equivalent and easier to read.



  • @asuffield said:

    Bonus points for spotting the grammatical error.

     "the performance should be high enough" or "the system should be fast enough" instead of "the performance of the system should be fast enough" ?   Not sure of this, I am not a native speaker 🙂
     


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