Your project plan should have three main components: a description of the goals you have set yourselves; a plan of the tasks to be completed to achieve these goals; and a description of the team working process that will allow you to carry out, and monitor progress on, your tasks. The whole document should be around 6 pages long (you can use additional space if providing large pictures, but no more than 10 pages in total).
The goal description should give an overview of the user problem and the robot task solution you propose. This could be in the form of a user story. If appropriate, include reference to existing systems that you are taking as inspiration, or published evidence for the user need that you plan to address. You should then breakdown the overall problem into the main technical subgoals, i.e., what you need to accomplish to get to the desired final result. For each subgoal you should provide an explicit milestone that states what you should have achieved, by what date, and what evidence you will present to show you have achieved it (e.g. a demonstration of the feature to your client).
The plan should explain how you will deploy your resources - 200 hours per group member over the semester - to achieve your goals. Note you should take into account time required by scheduled sessions (guest lectures, demo days, final presentations) and time used in planning and presenting (group meetings, report writing etc.), as well as time for building the system. You should also note the resources you have in terms of skills, equipment, etc. You must include a Gantt chart, which should clearly identify any dependencies between tasks. You may find it useful to make a revised version of your plan/gantt chart at key points in the project, in discussion with your client. The report should also contain an assessment of the risks that you anticipate for the project, and contingency planning that you have done to guard against them.
Finally, how you organise yourselves as a group and plan your work will be key to your success within the System Design project. You should detail the approach that you have taken to group organisation (e.g. specific roles of group members), meetings, communication, code-sharing, task allocation, and progress tracking.
The deadline for the project plan is 4pm on Friday 26th January. The document should be submitted electronically by one group member using the submit command:
submit sdp pp [filename]
where [filename] is the name of your project plan file. The filename must be group-[g]-plan.pdf where [g] is the group number.
This document should be submitted by a group member nominated for this purpose, and also emailed to the group mentor and to the TA (Ludovica Luisa Vissat) at the time of submission.
The project plan will contribute 15% of the marks for the course, and will be marked out of 15.
The marking will be based on the following elements:
Note this document differs somewhat from last year (as the task goals were then not determined by the group but given in advance). Nevertheless it might be helpful for the planning and organisation sections to consult this general feedback for the 2017 process reports.
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