Domain Driven Design @REWE digital: Martin Schimak on Story Storming

How domain experts and developers collaborate

from  Christoph Baudson

Domain Driven Design (DDD) is a discipline that structures the collaboration between domain experts and developers: By learning together, speaking the business language and modeling, they ultimately build software that solves the most important problems of the business. For us at REWE digital, these tasks are part of everyday life - and in order to provide a forum in which we can exchange ideas with interested parties on this topic and ultimately all learn from each other, REWE digital has been organizing the Domain Driven Design Cologne/Bonn Meetups for two and a half years now.

Modeling was also the topic of the meeting on the second September 2019, with guest speaker Martin Schimak from Vienna, who has been known as a driving force in the international DDD community for several years. He presented Story Storming, a workshop format developed by him, which creates a structure for the dialogue between experts and developers. The aim is that user journeys, workflows and entire business processes can be explored and understood - simply by telling visual stories and focusing on the technical language. Story Storming is similar to Event Storming, User Story Mapping, Domain Storytelling and Business Process Modeling.

After a short theoretical introduction, our 35 participants threw themselves into the cold water and tried out this method using a simple example. In six small groups, we explored the domain of a seemingly simple shopping list app by visualizing its underlying story using different colored post-its. By focusing on the basic structure of the language "subject-verb-object" we were able to tell these stories in the most natural way without having to learn much more than five different colors. This worked amazingly well from the start.

In the concluding discussion we reflected on the hands-on part, were able to exchange experiences and get rid of many questions. We agreed that the strengths of Story Storming lies in the fact that you can learn, record and improve the domain language with simple means - if in interview format or in small groups. You get quick feedback and recognize problems and hidden assumptions. By using post-its, the models are flexible and can be rearranged quickly whenever new insights arise.

We would like to thank our dedicated participants and Martin Schimak for this successful evening, where we were able to learn a lot from each other - the feedback speaks for itself. We are looking forward to the next Domain Driven Design Meetup at REWE digital!

You can find Martin's slides at Speakerdeck, and it's also worth taking a look at his blog article on Story Storming. Feel free to visit us at future dates of the Domain Driven Design Cologne/Bonn Meetup, you can also follow us on Twitter.

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