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Designing the Requirements: Building Applications that the User Wants and Needs

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Designing the Requirements: Building Applications that the User Wants and Needs


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  • Students will master the requirements-related skills they need to design applications the business appreciates and users love
  • They will build better relationships and strengthen more effective communication with both end users and business management
  • They will gain a deeper understanding of why large software projects still fail so often -- and how to keep that from happening to them
  • Description

    • Copyright 2016
    • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/8"
    • Pages: 400
    • Edition: 1st
    • Book
    • ISBN-10: 0-13-402121-5
    • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-402121-8

    Too many software applications don’t do what’s needed or they do it clumsily, frustrating their users and owners. The core problem: poorly conceived and poorly crafted requirements. In Designing the Requirements, Chris Britton explains why it’s not enough to simply “gather” requirements—you need to design them.

    Britton offers powerful techniques for understanding stakeholders’ concerns and working with stakeholders to get the requirements right. Using Britton’s context-driven approach to requirements design, you can detect inconsistencies, incompleteness, poor usability, and misalignment with business goals upstream—long before developers start coding. You can also design outward-looking applications and services that will integrate more effectively in a coherent IT architecture.

    First, Britton explains what requirements design really means and presents a hierarchy of designs that move step by step from requirements through implementation. Next, he demonstrates how to build on requirements processes you already use and how to overcome their serious limitations in large-scale development. Then, he walks you through designing your application’s relationship with the business, users, data, and other software to ensure superior usability, security, and maximum scalability and resilience.

    Whether you’re a software designer, architect, project manager, or programmer, Designing the Requirements will help you design software that works—for users, IT, and the entire business.

    Coverage includes

    • Designing the entire business solution, not just its software component
    • Using engineering-style design analysis to find flaws before implementation
    • Designing services, and splitting large development efforts into smaller, more manageable projects
    • Planning logical user interfaces that lead to superior user experiences
    • Designing databases and data access to reflect the meaning of your data
    • Building application frameworks that simplify life for programmers and project managers
    • Setting reasonable and achievable goals for performance, availability, and security
    • Designing for security at all levels, from strategy to code
    • Identifying new opportunities created by context-driven design


    Related Article

    10 Tips for Better Requirements

    Sample Content

    Online Sample Chapter

    Introduction to Context-Driven Design

    Sample Pages

    Download the sample pages (includes Chapter 1 and Index)

    Table of Contents

    Preface xiii

    Acknowledgments xxi

    About the Author xxiii

    Chapter 1: Introduction to Context-Driven Design 1

    Designing Requirements 2

    What Is Design? 9

    Making IT Application Development More of an Engineering Discipline 19

    Taking IT Architecture into Account 20

    Concluding Remarks 21

    Chapter 2: A Hierarchy of Designs 23

    Justifying the Hierarchy of Designs 23

    Context Design 28

    Integration Design 35

    Technical Design 41

    User Interface Design 44

    Database Design 46

    Implementation 47

    Is It Really Engineering? 48

    Concluding Remarks 51

    Chapter 3: Reusing Existing Methods and Practices 53

    Agile 54

    Upside-Down Design 60

    Use Cases 62

    The Problem with Estimating Cost 68

    Why Is BDUF Big? 72

    Iterations 74

    Quality 75

    Testing and Inspection 76

    Using Existing Practices in Context-Driven Design 78

    Learning Organizations 80

    Concluding Remarks 80

    Chapter 4: The Problem of Large Applications 83

    The Dimensions of Size 84

    Problems with Large Projects 88

    Can Large Projects Be Avoided? 100

    Concluding Remarks 103

    Chapter 5: The Relationship with the Business 105

    Understanding Business Processes 106

    When It’s Not a Process 112

    The Need for a Wider View 115

    Applying the Business Strategy to Application Development 118

    Analysis 123

    Concluding Remarks 128

    Chapter 6: The Relationship with the Users 129

    Adding the Detail 129

    Who Are the Users? 141

    Analyzing the Context Design 151

    Reviewing the Context Design 156

    Concluding Remarks 158

    Chapter 7: The Relationship to Other IT Projects 159

    Integration Design 161

    Services Interface Design 170

    Existing Applications 178

    Looking Back at the Design Process 186

    Concluding Remarks 188

    Chapter 8: User Interface Design and Ease of Use 189

    Logical User Interfaces 191

    From Tasks to Clicks 194

    Ease of Use 199

    Transaction and Task Integrity 208

    The User Interface Design and the Other Detailed Designs 212

    Concluding Remarks 212

    Chapter 9: Database Design 215

    Database Design 215

    Database Design Theory 223

    Programmers versus the Database Designer 233

    Database Access Services 236

    NoSQL 238

    Concluding Remarks 242

    Chapter 10: Technical Design—Principles 243

    Principles of High Performance on a Single Machine 244

    Principles of High Performance on Many Servers 252

    Principles of High Resiliency 260

    The Need for Testing and Benchmarking 263

    The Technical Design Process 265

    Concluding Remarks 268

    Chapter 11: Technical Design—Structure 271

    Program Structure 272

    What Is a Framework? 276

    The Variety of Programming Languages 281

    Choosing a Programming Language and Framework 286

    Extending the Framework 290

    Implementing Common Functionality 293

    Concluding Remarks 295

    Chapter 12: Security Design 297

    IT Application Security Principles 299

    The Security Elements of Each Design 307

    Security Programming 316

    Concluding Remarks 319

    Chapter 13: The Future of Application Development 323

    How Context-Driven Design Changes Application Development 323

    Context-Driven Design Opportunities 325

    The Application Development Challenges 332

    Concluding Remarks 339

    Appendix A: Context Design Checklist 341

    Description 341

    References 349

    Index 353


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