Why software/web projects fail?

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#1 Core  Icon User is offline

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Why software/web projects fail?

Post icon  Posted 05 August 2010 - 09:16 AM

We all know what just happened to Google Wave. And this is not the only big project that ever failed. It's one thing when your own small project doesn't get the credit it deserves, but it's a completely different story when the talk is about millions of invested dollars and hundreds of hours spent on development and testing.

In your opinion, what could be the reason projects fail? Lack of planning and research? Lack of really innovative ideas or maybe the world just isn't ready to embrace new technology (although not directly related to software, Apple Newton comes to mind, and look at the iPhone now)?

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#2 KYA  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 05 August 2010 - 09:27 AM

Lack of a target market/audience/demographic. Lack of a concise business plan.
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#3 skyhawk133  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 05 August 2010 - 09:57 AM

Scope creep?!
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#4 NeoTifa  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 05 August 2010 - 10:45 AM

I could see this as advertising fail. I in fact didn't hear of Wave until you guys all fanboy'd it, and even then I didn't the big deal. My account went dead after 3 days. Never got into it, but had they advertised it better (than what I've seen) then maybe it woulda got a little more attention.
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#5 Raynes  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 05 August 2010 - 10:56 AM

The fact that Wave was invite-only for most of it's run seems like a big killer to me. If you do the whole "HEY GUYS, LOOK AT THIS, IT'S SO AWESOME....... BUT YOU CAN'T USE IT CUZ INVITE-ONLY." thing for what? A year? What do you expect? People stop caring.
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#6 macosxnerd101  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 05 August 2010 - 11:14 AM

I hate Internet Exploder with a passion. I really do. But the fact that I'm stuck with it on my school laptop, and it won't work on IE inhibited me from using it. I may use my crappy home computer which has Firefox once a month if I have my school laptop, just b/c my school laptop can run laps around my home computer. So the trade-off is use Wave and deal with a laggy POS computer, or use my school computer and email to avoid Wave.
Real tough call there.
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#7 eclipsed4utoo  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 05 August 2010 - 12:08 PM

View PostRaynes, on 05 August 2010 - 01:56 PM, said:

The fact that Wave was invite-only for most of it's run seems like a big killer to me. If you do the whole "HEY GUYS, LOOK AT THIS, IT'S SO AWESOME....... BUT YOU CAN'T USE IT CUZ INVITE-ONLY." thing for what? A year? What do you expect? People stop caring.


Exactly. We first heard about Wave and then this video showed all the possibilies(and was great marketing). But then people wanted to use it....nope, invite-only beta. And that would have been fine for a month or so, but hell, it lasted for what like 10 months? You can't dangle a new technology infront of people then expect them to care in 10 months when they can finally use it. Not an internet technology anyway.

Wave could have been a great tool, but Google botched it's unveiling.
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#8 nooblet  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 05 August 2010 - 01:02 PM

View Postmacosxnerd101, on 05 August 2010 - 10:14 AM, said:

I hate Internet Exploder with a passion. I really do. But the fact that I'm stuck with it on my school laptop, and it won't work on IE inhibited me from using it. I may use my crappy home computer which has Firefox once a month if I have my school laptop, just b/c my school laptop can run laps around my home computer. So the trade-off is use Wave and deal with a laggy POS computer, or use my school computer and email to avoid Wave.
Real tough call there.


Time for an upgrade.
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#9 macosxnerd101  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 05 August 2010 - 01:05 PM

Very true. Except my brother uses the computer and pollutes it with games, DLL Injectors, etc, and my dad (who makes the final purchasing decisions) sees computers as "workstations only." I turned in my school laptop today and get it back in a month, but otherwise I just use my school computer. I can code and get onto DIC, so I'm happy. :D I'm hoping for the after Christmas sales, I can talk my parents into getting me a laptop for college.
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#10 modi123_1  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 05 August 2010 - 01:13 PM

Here's the top few that come to mind:
Lack of a design doc..
lack of a business user champion...
lack of cohesive vision...
too many cooks in the kitchen...
changing methodologies in midstream poorly
withholding information
verbal requirements and design information
poor communication skills
scope creep
the inability to say 'no'.
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#11 Tom9729  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 06 August 2010 - 12:01 PM

View PostRaynes, on 05 August 2010 - 12:56 PM, said:

The fact that Wave was invite-only for most of it's run seems like a big killer to me. If you do the whole "HEY GUYS, LOOK AT THIS, IT'S SO AWESOME....... BUT YOU CAN'T USE IT CUZ INVITE-ONLY." thing for what? A year? What do you expect? People stop caring.

It worked well for Gmail.
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#12 Shane Hudson  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 06 August 2010 - 12:57 PM

I think a big problem with Wave was that you needed to have friends that used it and unless you are networked with people that use it a lot, or even better... used it in your company, then there would have been no use for it.
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#13 eclipsed4utoo  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 06 August 2010 - 01:02 PM

View PostTom9729, on 06 August 2010 - 03:01 PM, said:

View PostRaynes, on 05 August 2010 - 12:56 PM, said:

The fact that Wave was invite-only for most of it's run seems like a big killer to me. If you do the whole "HEY GUYS, LOOK AT THIS, IT'S SO AWESOME....... BUT YOU CAN'T USE IT CUZ INVITE-ONLY." thing for what? A year? What do you expect? People stop caring.

It worked well for Gmail.


I think GMail is a little different. It was in the invitation-only beta for almost 3 years, but that started back in 2004. The internet is much different now than it was 6 years ago. So many companies are coming out with great new products now...way more than they were 6 years ago.
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#14 Tom9729  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 06 August 2010 - 01:09 PM

View Posteclipsed4utoo, on 06 August 2010 - 03:02 PM, said:

View PostTom9729, on 06 August 2010 - 03:01 PM, said:

View PostRaynes, on 05 August 2010 - 12:56 PM, said:

The fact that Wave was invite-only for most of it's run seems like a big killer to me. If you do the whole "HEY GUYS, LOOK AT THIS, IT'S SO AWESOME....... BUT YOU CAN'T USE IT CUZ INVITE-ONLY." thing for what? A year? What do you expect? People stop caring.

It worked well for Gmail.


I think GMail is a little different. It was in the invitation-only beta for almost 3 years, but that started back in 2004. The internet is much different now than it was 6 years ago. So many companies are coming out with great new products now...way more than they were 6 years ago.

I don't think so. Companies have been using the "invite-only" strategy to generate appeal for a long time (eg. closed betas).

I never used Wave so I can't comment on this definitively, but it sounds like the difference between Wave and Gmail is that Gmail was inter-operable with any other email service.

Edit: Basically what Shane just said. :)

This post has been edited by Tom9729: 06 August 2010 - 01:09 PM

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#15 eclipsed4utoo  Icon User is offline

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Re: Why software/web projects fail?

Posted 06 August 2010 - 01:35 PM

View PostTom9729, on 06 August 2010 - 04:09 PM, said:

View Posteclipsed4utoo, on 06 August 2010 - 03:02 PM, said:

View PostTom9729, on 06 August 2010 - 03:01 PM, said:

View PostRaynes, on 05 August 2010 - 12:56 PM, said:

The fact that Wave was invite-only for most of it's run seems like a big killer to me. If you do the whole "HEY GUYS, LOOK AT THIS, IT'S SO AWESOME....... BUT YOU CAN'T USE IT CUZ INVITE-ONLY." thing for what? A year? What do you expect? People stop caring.

It worked well for Gmail.


I think GMail is a little different. It was in the invitation-only beta for almost 3 years, but that started back in 2004. The internet is much different now than it was 6 years ago. So many companies are coming out with great new products now...way more than they were 6 years ago.

I don't think so. Companies have been using the "invite-only" strategy to generate appeal for a long time (eg. closed betas).

I never used Wave so I can't comment on this definitively, but it sounds like the difference between Wave and Gmail is that Gmail was inter-operable with any other email service.

Edit: Basically what Shane just said. :)


I don't know of any other companies, other than video game companies, that unveil a free product that is currently in an invite-only beta where it stays in this invite only for a year.

What I meant by my comment was that if I unveil a product now, and not let users in, 9 times out of 10, another company will make a similar product that users can use now. This didn't really happen 6 years ago which was why GMail could stay in a beta for 3 years and still survive.
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