Nice topic! I like the overall form of the suggest, because
it gets us away from tying urgency to releases.
At some point, we should sit down and decide to do a release
and only then tag the things that need to be done for the next
release. Right now, we do a lot of shuffling and issues for
the next release pile up.
I think urgency needs clear levels, which "results are wrong"
indicates, but it’s not the only critical issue that has to be
fixed (breaking in a compiler everyone uses is another).
This extreme urgency level to me is synonymous with “next release” (which
is not how we currently use “next release”).
Then, behind the results-are-wrong, we have the as-soon-as-possible
issues. I put most bugs into that boat if they don’t cross the
So how about for urgency something more temporal (the names are
bad, but I hope the idea’s clear):
URGENCY: NOW << ASAP << EVENTUALLY
I think difficulty is a trickier issue, with something like
DIFFICULTY: NOVICE << BEGINNER << INTERMEDIATE << EXPERT
but even that is an issue because some things are expert comp sci
and others are expert stats and other things are expert dev ops
or sys admin or whatever. So somehow the difficulty really needs
to be something like kinds of pre-reqs. But even then, if you have
the pre-reqs, some things are harder than others. So difficulty is
only going to give a rough flavor of project complexity.
Then Krzysztof’s idea of “project” is related in my mind to size,
SIZE: X-SMALL << SMALL << MEDIUM << LARGE << X-LARGE << XX-LARGE
We can go with the vente/grande scale, or the medium/big-gulp scale
if you don’t like the t-shirt scale.
Of course, size and difficulty are not unrelated as the more expert
you are, the smaller projects look.
I like this idea because it takes us away from putting the
milestones in ahead of time. —hopefully we’ll
be able to get to all of the NOW issues. But that’s my main
fear for project stability—that we’ll get overwhelmed on
multiple fronts (compilers, platforms, algorithms, etc.) and won’t
be able to keep up with all the NOW issues.