What is NDD?

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What is NDD?

Narrative-Driven Development is an emerging approach that employs an iterative process designed for collaborative software development, acknowledging the complexities and uncertainties inherent in human creative work. Its workflows and tools facilitate conversations, creativity and problem-solving.
NDD began at a software consultancy called Xolvio, where the founder Sam Hatoum blended proven techniques like Event Storming, User Story Mapping, Domain-Driven Design, Behaviour Driven Development and others, to quickly and accurately gather requirements and ensure the right thing was delivered.
By applying NDD within the consultancy, Xolvio began witnessing remarkable improvements in project delivery speeds. What typically took years was now being accomplished in months, delivering value at an unprecedented rate.
Take, for instance, the development of a loyalty platform for a major gaming company. This platform managed game data from three million users, maintained a dynamic points economy, and incorporated a robust inventory management system, all integrated with SalesForce and single sign-on for user accounts.
NDD facilitated the delivery of the system within three-months, with 90% automated test coverage.
Narrative Driven is not magic but a solution that addresses the problems of distributed and incomplete information. By gathering accurate information quickly and ensuring its quality, delivery times are significantly accelerated.
The approach begins with high-level, low-fidelity requirements that may be imprecise and even incorrect. It progressively refines these into low-level, high-fidelity specifications, ultimately leading to precise and correct systems.
NDD’s basic premise is that natural language descriptions of a software product, expressed and organized moment by moment, can and should serve as the single source of truth for all software professionals, regardless of their role.
The core component of NDD is the practice of scripting, which is the main subject of this guide.

How to approach this guide?

What follows are the first principles of Narrative-Driven Development.
This guide is designed with a hands-on approach in mind. We encourage you to use the provided template to start creating your own narratives as you follow along the example.
Join the NDD community Slack to ask any questions you might have and post your narrative for review.