May 04, 2012 - VitoMd and the Evil Machine

Today is demo Day!! and then CRASH! (My checklist to avoid it)

Today is demo Day!, you and your team are excited to show to some potential customer, all the awesome things that the new app can do .  The demo start good, but then CRASH!

We all have been there, the bugs like to show up in demo's day, it's a software law. But you can avoid it with a simple checklist. This is mine, you can create your own.

1) Before demo don't touch the code!

This is one of the most common errors. One developer discover a simple bug, then tries to fix it before demo. He fixed it , but he didn't  test the others 10 scenarios. So of course in middle of the demo, it CRASHES!

protip:  Use Test Driven Development, or at least test your code. So when someone refactor something or fix a bug you have confidence that all the code works as expected

2) Check the demo environment

Sometimes your dev environment is full , there is no more space, so in Demo Time you have a nice error like this: "Storage limit exceeded" . This happened to me when coding some Salesforce Apps.

3) Prepare your demo data

We are awesome and funny coders, we like to put strange names in the records like "ababshaha" or "Bruce Willis" , that is nice but in demo day  it is better to have clean and nice data to show.

protip: While you are coding try to fill the forms with meaningful data. There are browser plugins to automate this or some test tool too.

4) Have a list of what to show (focus on the client).

We like to tell the client that we have an algorithm that work 10 time faster that the old one, but you know what? They don't care. In demo day focus on the client side, show things that they care. This is usually the opposite of what you care about. For example, you spend two days working on the new and great algorithm to sort things, but the client loved the way that the jquery plugin slideUp some popup (that took you 2 minutes to setup).

5) Bring only the important people to the demo.

If you are the project manager don't waste developers' time inviting all the project developers, invite just the ones that can help you.  From client's side it is also better to have few people invited. If you run the demo using the phone and screen share, it can be really annoying communicating with a lot of people.

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