Research and development activities will follow an “agile” technology development strategy. The main rationale behind this is to have short project development cycles for all currently run projects with direct user feedback for the developed components. Each of the phases will reflect requirements capture, evaluation checks and agile development methodology. In a usage scenario the four different phases of service that OpeningupSlovenia will provide to stake holders are:
Discovery: An initial short phase, in which institutions start researching the needs of their service’s users, find out what they should be measuring, and explore technological or policy-related constraints.
Alpha: The next phase in which the prototype solutions of user needs are being tested within a relevant OpeningupSlovenia stakeholder (ex. a primary school) with a small group of users or stakeholders, with early feedback about the design of the service.
Beta: Feedback against the demands of a live environment, understanding how to build and scale while meeting user needs. This is a phase where a possibility would be to release a version to test in public (all level stakeholders, ex. all primary schools in the country).
Live: The service can go now live and by iteratively improving the service, reacting to new needs and demands, and meeting targets set during its development.
Agile life cycle of current exemplar pilot projects:
|5 projects||2 projects||3 projects||1 project|
|Finding out what the users need, what to measure and what the constraints are||Finding out what the users need, what to measure and what the constraints are||Scaling up and going public||Learning how to continuously improve the live service|
The three main phases, lasting one year each, are:
Year 1 – Discovery: Understanding the needs and current state of affairs by possibly adopting and reusing of existing tools, development of initial steps and synchronization in order to refine the objectives and requirements of the initial projects and case studies (listed below). This will result in the OpeningUpSlovenia pipeline with working components in all steps so that the initial prototypes to be deployed in the case studies can be realized.
Year 2 – Alpha: Recalibration and Adoption Check, where the focus is on recalibration of research and development objectives and – simultaneously – development of more sophisticated components to complement the year 1 components and projects. This results in the acknowledgement of OpeningUpSlovenia objectives by all stakeholders and users and points to fully scale deployment of ICT technologies for real-life usage in the case studies.
Year 3- Beta and Live: Evaluation and Roll-Out, where the development focus is on scalability issues and on refining software prototypes to meet formal learning standards resulting in fully functional prototypes. The second focus of this phase is, however, the preparation of the final public usage of software prototypes and intensive project evaluation.
Normal cooperation between consortium partners will be achieved using e-mail, fax and phone. In addition, a project Website is built which serves both as platform for data exchange among partners (private area) and as a tool for the Dissemination and Exploitation Plans (public area). The consortium holds regular meetings to discuss various issues that require the participation and opinion of all partners. In fact, different types of meetings are foreseen within OpeningupSlovenia:
- Kick-off meeting: The Kick-off meeting was held at the beginning of project activities.
- Regular meetings: The steering board and the exploitation board hold a regular meeting every 2 weeks, which will be hosted in turn by each partner.
- Extraordinary meetings: Working group meetings are held whenever necessary or upon request of the involved parties.
- Reviews: Project review meetings are held at regular meetings.
 An approach where projects and products progress and develop in incremental iterations. The product works from a very early stage, so improvement can be made based on real user feedback and testing.