Holy cow, I wrote a book!
Mike Dunn wonders
what the Microspeak term parking lot means.
I'm not familiar with this term either,
and the first document I turned up during my search was
a PowerPoint presentation that said
"Avoid using Microsoft jargon terms, such as parking lot
Yeah, that wasn't much help.
From what I can gather,
the term parking lot started out as a term used during
You've got a bunch of people in a conference room tossing out all
sorts of ideas.
The traditional way of organizing the ideas is to write each one
on a Post-It® note and stick it on the whiteboard.
As more and more notes appear,
you start to organize them by grouping together similar ideas.
Every so often, you'll run into an idea that, while good,
isn't really relevant to the problem you're trying to solve.
You don't want to throw it away, so instead, you designate
a corner of the whiteboard to be the place to "park" those ideas
for later consideration.
That corner of the whiteboard is nicknamed the
The term parking lot then began to be applied to
the document that collected all of these "parked" ideas,
so they could be circulated to a more appropriate audience.
The term then expanded to refer to any document
which served as the official repository of assorted suggestions
for future work or discussion.
(Known to some people simply as
For example, there is a SharePoint List titled
Active Issues and the subtitle
parking lot for discussion topics in weekly XYZ meeting.
Each item on the list is assigned to a particular person and
assigned a priority.
I can't find any citations for parking lot being used
as a way to say something like "we'll talk about this after
the meeting is over,"
but I can see how it could be related to the sense of
parking lot I was able to turn up:
The parking lot is the list of things that aren't really
relevant to the topic at hand but which are still worth discussing.
We just won't discuss them here.