Requirements Fixation?

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I was recently asked to help a fellow PhD’er to assist in making a short video teaser for ICSE 2014 in Hyderabad, India. I said yes, of course, because I hadn’t learnt the lesson to say NO when asked to volunteer. Plus it sounded fun (doesn’t it always?).

Their paper was on Requirements. Those things you think about when you are embarking on a project build and want to include. They conducted a study using two groups: one was given a list of requirements for a fitness app design task and told that they MUST include them; the other was given the same list of requirements but told that they MAY include them. You guessed it – the group with the MUST including ALL the requirements, but were less creative in their offerings.

I asked the question: This sounds like an English lesson. What if you had a third group and gave them a list but said nothing? What if there was no list? These are apparently questions for another day, so wish them luck in presenting their paper this June…