Vasa Capasizes is a famous case that happened more than 300 years ago. Although it is a story about construction of ships, there are still lots of lessons we can learn. These lessons are especially valuable to us in the development of information systems project.
Typically, the process of the development of information systems project can be divided into five different phases, which is known as the systems development life cycle or SDLC, including system planing and investigation, analysis, design, implementation, and maintenance and review. Similarly, the process of construction of ships also consists of these stages. We will talk about major pitfalls the Vasa Capasizes case, provide a brief introduction to objectives and tasks of each phase in SDLC and make an analogy to show how similar mistakes may occur in information systems development.
1. Pitfalls in Vasa Capasizes Case.
As the result of Naval Court Inquiry showed, No one was ever found guilty and no one should be punished. Generally, this also means that everyone was guilty and everyone should be punished. In fact, mistakes can be found in every step of the construction and almost everyone involving in the construction o including customer, designer, workers, supervisor o should be responsible for the tragedy. Major pitfalls are summarized as follows:.
1) Unscientific schedule.
Before starting the construction, Henrik Hybertson, the Dutch Master Shipwright, signed a contract to produce 3 ships during the next five years while it typically took 2 to 3 years to complete a single ship. Later, the number of ships changed several times to meet the rapidly changing requirements of Swedish Navy. The result of the contract is that workers had to construct faster than they usually did, which resulted in a decline in the quality of their products.
2) Irrational and unclear requirements.
One of the most ridiculous thing in Vasa Capasizes Case is that the dimension of ships was changed after raw materials had been prepared.