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A brief overview of the most important terms we use in our daily work.



Agile coaching

The goal of agile coaching is to enable people, teams and organizations to deal with constant change, to solve problems independently and thus enable more autonomy.

Application programming interface (API)

Programming interface or application interface - interface in a software that allows the exchange of data or the functional connection of two applications or parts of an application.


The AusweisApp2 is a software for the use of the online ID card, which is provided and further developed by Governikus GmbH & Co KG on behalf of the Federal Office for Information Security.


Beta version

Productive running, real version of the software, but which is either still limited in functionality or may still contain bugs.


Chatham House Rule

The Chatham House Rule states that participants in an event may speak freely about the content discussed, but may not reveal the identity or (organizational) affiliation of the speakers. The aim is to promote open discussions without individual participants being held responsible for their statements.

Closed captions

Accurate transcription of media content including sounds, tones and music shown in parallel during playback.


An operating model (and associated environment) in which computing power and/or storage capacity is decoupled from the physical location of the users and offered as a service over the Internet. The application code is not executed on the device or server on site, but in a data center that is often spatially remote.

Community of practice

Exchange between people who face similar challenges and tasks. Practitioners exchange experiences with practitioners. They come together to solve problems, share best practices and learn from each other. In a community of practice, informal learning takes place, which is not only promoted by formal structures, but above all by the interaction and cooperation of the members.

Continuous delivery

Continuous delivery (CD) is a software development practice in which software can be continuously deployed to production environments. By automating build, test, and deployment processes, reliable and efficient delivery of software is achieved to enable faster time-to-market and continuous improvement.

Continuous integration

Continuous integration (CI) is a software development method in which developers regularly integrate their code into a common version control system in order to detect conflicts at an early stage and ensure code quality. Automated build and test processes enable efficient collaboration within the development team.



DevSecOps is a software development practice that integrates security throughout the DevOps process. It involves collaboration between developers, IT operations teams and security professionals to address security issues from the outset and ensure continuous security testing, monitoring and compliance.

Digital ecosystem

A socio-technical system that, in addition to technical products and services as well as technologies, explicitly includes organizations and individual actors as well as their relationships with one another.

Digital plattform

Forms the core technical aspect of a digital ecosystem and thereby realizes the service.


An umbrella term for activities related to product development that aim to explore or "uncover" the expectations and needs of users and the environment in relation to a problem. Can take place as a stand-alone phase and/or continuously as part of the development process.


eID client

An eID client is software that can be used to use the online ID function and identify oneself on the Internet. It handles the encrypted data exchange between the ID card and the respective application.

Ex ante

Ex ante instruments or measures for better regulation or regulatory impact assessment are those that are already used during the drafting of new regulations. For example, to assess possible costs or effects on the environment and society during the drafting process. Correspondingly, ex post measures are those that measure the costs and effects incurred after a regulation has been adopted and entered into force, for example via evaluations, surveys by the Federal Statistical Office or so-called practice checks.


Feature toggles

Feature toggles, also known as feature flags, are mechanisms in software development that allow specific features or functionalities of a program to be enabled or disabled. By dynamically toggling features, developers can develop, test, and deploy changes independently without having to branch the code.


An established model in science and research for the interdisciplinary exchange of experience. In this case, fellows are experienced experts on specific topics and/or scientists who make their knowledge and findings available to other institutions by collaborating on projects for a limited period of time.



Public network-based platform for publishing software projects and code. Based on the decentralized version management Git for software development projects.



A cryptographic process for validating the authenticity and integrity of data, among other things. In addition to hashing as a process, there are also so-called hash functions that are used in authentication systems to prevent passwords from being stored in plain text.


Jobs-to-be-done framework

The jobs-to-be-done framework is an approach for user-centered strategic thinking. It involves identifying and prioritizing processes, problems, and people's needs in the context of a task to be performed. Potential fields and product/service ideas can be derived from this.


Minimum viable product

Minimum viable product (MVP) for early customer use, to avoid the risk of development past real needs via early confrontation with real use.

Mob programming

Mob programming is an agile development method in which an entire team works together on a computer. All team members are actively involved in the development process and regularly take turns to write, test and improve code together.


NFC interface

NFC stands for near-field communication. The technology enables the contactless exchange of data over very short distances. It is also used when paying with a smartphone at the supermarket checkout.


One thing per page

Splitting the web form into individual smaller steps so that each page contains only a single piece of information or query.

Open source

Term for software whose source code can be viewed publicly and by third parties, modified and used under certain conditions, depending on the license.


Pair programming

Pair programming is an agile practice where two developers work together to collaborate on code. One person takes the "driver" role, writing the code, while the other person acts as an "observer", providing feedback and identifying issues.


The word "phishing" is composed of the English words "fishing" and "password harvesting". The neologism describes a fraudulent practice of obtaining personal data such as passwords or credit card numbers using fake websites, emails or short messages.

Privacy by default

Default privacy option settings to be as privacy-friendly as possible.

Privacy by design

Protect the privacy of users through technical or organizational measures, e.g., by pseudonymizing stored data. Consider the privacy of users from the outset in every product, design and engineering decision, not impose it on a system later.

Production operation (live operation / effective system / live operation)

Make one software available to all users - as opposed to testing or developing only for developing teams.


Simple technical or design test model of a proposed solution that quickly tests or validates ideas, design assumptions, and other conceptual aspects at an early stage. Final implementation for the target product can be done in other ways.



Rough development plan in which problems and development ideas are prioritized for the coming period.


Silent launch

A launch usually refers to the introduction of a new product, which is usually prepared and accompanied by marketing or PR campaigns to generate the greatest possible attention. A silent launch, on the other hand, takes place "quietly" and without too much accompanying communication.


Tech4Germany fellowship

Three-month program that brings together up to four talented individuals from the fields of product management, UI/UX design and software development with three to five digital pioneers from federal ministries and the federal administration. The goal is to develop prototype software products for concrete digital projects of the administration using user-centric and agile methods.

Trunk-based development

Trunk-based development is an agile development method in which all developers work directly on the main branch (trunk) of the version control system. Small, incremental changes are often integrated to identify conflicts early and enable continuous integration and deployment.


Usability test

Testing of a system by test persons for user-friendliness, functionality and design.

User experience

User experience (UX) describes the holistic experience that users have with a product or service. It includes factors that can be influenced, such as findability, usability, and functionality, as well as factors that cannot be influenced, such as life situation, prior knowledge, and current ability to concentrate.

User journey

The user journey depicts the points of contact of a target group that arise throughout the entire use of a service, ideally from the first information about the use of a digital service to the final decision.

User research

Research into the needs and requirements of a target group, the results of which can be used as a basis for product development and marketing strategy. Often differentiated into qualitative (observation, interviews) and quantitative (surveys, statistics).



Versioning makes it possible to show the changes made to a software program by its further development over time. The version number indicates how significant the respective changes are: Minor improvements or enhancements are documented as a change in the minor version number (version 1.1 to 1.2). Extensive changes, on the other hand, result in a new major version number (version 1.2 to version 2.0).



An element built into applications such as apps or websites that users can interact with to display external content. A widget ensures a consistent design and can be updated without the need for individual service providers to take action.

Work4Germany fellowship

Six-month program for transformation experts with strong methodological skills from the private and nonprofit sectors and committed employees from federal ministries and the federal administration. In tandems, work processes are redesigned and cross-departmental challenges are worked on together. Focus: Experiencing iterative and methodical ways of working.