User Story Mapping

I just finished reading User Story Mapping – Discover the Whole Story, Build the Right Product (Jeff Patton with Peter Economy, 276 pages, 2014), and I really like this book.

I’ve read quite a few technical books related to software development, but this one really stands out. Other books also have quite some interesting author voices, humor, etc. But here I had the feeling that even more “book design patterns” were broken, in a good way, with lots of interesting pictures and images all along, and a quite engaging use of the language.

The content is also great! The main idea behind the book is the concept of story mapping, which is a way to organize “user stories” (with more ‘stories’, and less ‘users’) in a physical disposition from left to write, allowing people to have discussions on how a specific task or workflow is sequentially done.

This can be used equally well to describe how things are today vs how they will be later. And also, to describe the user journey inside a specific software solution. It is a generic, yet powerful tool.

The book, however, is also about all the other things that happen even before we decide to take on a new software project (as for business opportunities, problem discovery), to the point of reviewing and validating what was eventually built.

And it does all of that with brutal honesty and straightforwardness. Not with secret success formulas, but with lots of tips for the trade-offs and pitfalls all around modern software practice.

If this sounds interesting to you, I can guarantee you will love reading this book as much as I did.

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