Losing Something In Translation: Turning Requirements Into Specifications
Defense Systems Management College Fort Belvoir United States
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Perhaps the reader remembers the comedy routine in which a performer orates a lyrical, emotive passage in a deep, inspiring voiceexcept the quotation is in some unintelligible language. Another performer asks, What does that mean in English The translation is something like, The snake fell out of the tree, onto the baby and ate him. As audience members gasp in revulsion, they hear the punchline, It loses something in translation. Requirements managers, program managers and warfighters also gasp in revulsion after engineering teams translate requirements into specifications. Sometimes something gets lost. More often, requirements turn into extensive and expensive specifications.