Killing A Big Project

I just learned today that our largest project has been canceled after 3 years. I’m still in a bit of shock that a decision was finally made. The project had every sign of going wrong over the last 3 years.

  • It was a huge rewrite of a legacy application into a web application.
  • It was going to be done in 6 months.
  • It was supposed to add totally new functionality.
  • Perhaps one or two of the developers had ever built a really large application.
  • After 6 months no one could agree on the requirements, but the developers started coding anyway.
  • The scope of the project completely shifted 3 times.
  • All of the business logic and backend code was being done by a single developer.
  • It added an enterprise rules engine that was going to allow business analysts to write the rules without any help from the developers.
  • The new rules engine was going to save the project.
  • One of the business rules documents contained a matrix with over 2000 business rules.
  • A customer was never defined.
  • The system had to have zero defects to be released.
  • There were over 10,000 manual test cases run by the QA staff.
  • There were over 1500 defects.
  • There were two levels of validation known as Level 1 or Level 2 edits with different functions.
  • Every lead on the project recommended killing it as the project progressed.
  • It had 700 tests, but 500+ of them were functional integration tests not unit tests.

I think you get the picture. Anyway I feel remarkably free having a clean slate in front of me.