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Agile Estimating and Planning by Mike Cohn

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Chapter 7. Re-Estimating

“There’s no sense in being precise when you don’t even know what you’re talking about.”

—John von Neumann

One of the most common questions about estimating with story points or ideal days is “When do we re-estimate?” To arrive at an answer it is critical to remember that story points and ideal days are estimates of the overall size and complexity of the feature being implemented. Story points in particular are not an estimate of the amount of time it takes to implement a feature, even though we often fall into the trap of thinking of them as such. The amount of time that implementing a feature will take is a function of its size (estimated in either ideal days or story points) and the team’s rate of progress (as reflected ...

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