FL0 – Reflection

No, I will not be writing a rap. Yes, that is a zero.

A project I worked on during studio 3, FL0, my goodness was that the biggest nightmare of a project that I have ever worked on. Silver lining, it taught me a whole bunch of things that I’m really glad I learnt. The purpose of this blog is to assist in reinforcing these lessons and to help myself grow from them, so lets talk about it.

FL0 was a project intended to assist audio students in learning about signal flow, which ideally would have had each of the participating dev team obtain a basic understanding of signal flow but I digress. In order to do this project the team was split into programmers and designers which was something new for the way I have worked in the past. Communication between teams was limited to documentation and a liaison from each side. The communication barrier was a challenge we haven’t had in the past and became a massive hindrance as the primary source of information for us programmers was somewhat lacking significantly. In order to bypass this we had our liaison speak to the designers with a huge array of questions for clarification and further explanation. The result of this was a clear idea of what we needed to do and allowed us to dive in to development. The barrier popped its head back up again when we showed our progress to the designers through our liaison and received a very confused response as it turned out to be incredibly different to what they wanted. Their next set of instructions for how to develop the project required an entire rewrite that was entirely different to what was originally presented, fun.

Through trial and error we eventually discovered that the leading problem with communication was confusion within the design team. Once they had a conversation about what was going on with the project and what they were aiming to create we were able to create something that functioned how they intended. This was an incredibly relieving feeling as we could finally feel as though we had achieved something with the project. In future this kind of thing could be resolved more on our end too with organising more regular progress check-ins so that an entire system rewrite isn’t required or is at least caught early.

The other main problem that this project highlighted for me was in conflict resolution. At one point for the project, some members of our team were in the same room as the designers and one in particular was saying some unkind things about a member of our team who was sick at the time and had done numerous changes, fixes and rewrites of areas they had requested. This kind of blatant disrespect for someone they were working with who had been working hard for them was something that drove me to become very internally angry. This in turn made me very irritable when it came to interacting with this member of the design team and no good resolution was achieved. This bothers me to a degree as I am usually not at all an angry person and in fact angering me is fairly difficult. Having not achieved a satisfactory resolution I feel as though I need to work on conflict resolution techniques so that this kind of thing does not happen again. I feel like the most ideal way to be able to achieve this is to be able to effectively communicate my concerns, whether that be with a project, a person or a decision.

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