Many of you will be familiar with Jeff Patton’s explanation of iterative and incremental using the Mona Lisa:
I’ve used it many time to explain the difference between iterative and incremental. But I’ve always thought there’s a better analogy out there. I’ve also wanted to compare to a big bang approach, but there isn’t an illustration for da Vinci doing that.
So, along with the help of an amazing illustrator, Tim Smith, we’ve come up with some drawings using an analogy of road building.
Many approach building anything in an all-or-nothing manner; Keep the site closed until everything is ready for use. That’s what we’re calling a big bang approach.
Sometimes, you want to build a road iteratively: a dirt track will suffice to begin with, moving to gravel, then upgrading to tarmac as time allows.
Other times, the road from A to B may be most important. So you build incrementally: the road from A to B first, then the road to C, then finally to D.
So what do you think?
How could we improve our illustrations? We have some ideas, but would really like to hear what you say before we make further changes.
Now which kind of approach is that?