Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Distributed Planning Poker and TFS

Mountain Goat software makes a great online planning poker application at PlanningPoker.com (funny enough). After registering for free you can create games and invite your team members to participate and cast votes for User Stories.

We used this for our distributed estimation sessions but entering all the stories was bit laborious. There is a great option when you create the game to import stories in a comma delimited format. When you are using Team Foundation Server you can create a query to export selected fields for your User Stories and add them all at once while creating a new game.

Create a TFS query with the fields you want to show in the planning poker game like the one below.

Open the query in Excel.

Then save the spreadsheet as a CSV.

Then open the file in Notepad.

Copy the column header rows and the rows with the User Story data. When you create a new game on PlanningPoker.com there is a field where you can paste the rows to import them.

Then when you start the game you can add each story.

Then your team can estimate each story.

Now if only they had an option to have it automatically update TFS with the result. Enjoy!


knev said...
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Peter said...

Thanks - exactly what I needed. In addition to your suggestion I've added an IE accelerator so you can go directly from the TFS id in poker planning to the description in TFS. That makes the process even more smooth.

Tommy Norman said...

Peter - Have you published that accelerator somewhere? I'd love to try it out.

Peter said...

Hi Tommy

You cannot use exactly the same accelerator as it contain a link to your TFS server. I can send/upload the source files to you so you can modify it to your own TFS server.