Economics of Iterative Software Development, The: Steering Toward Better Business Results
Product Author Bios
Walker Royce is the vice president of IBM’s Worldwide Rational Lab Services. He has managed large software engineering projects, consulted with a broad spectrum of IBM's worldwide customer base, and developed a software management approach that exploits an iterative life cycle, industry best practices, and architecture-first priorities. He is the author of Software Project Management: A Unified Framework (Addison-Wesley, 1998) and a principal contributor to the management philosophy inherent in Rational’s Unified Process. He received his BA in physics from the University of California, and his MS in computer information and control engineering from the University of Michigan.
Kurt Bittner is chief technical officer for the Americas at Ivar Jacobson Consulting. He has worked in the software industry for more than 26 years in a variety of roles, including developer, team leader, architect, project manager, and business leader. He has led agile projects, run a large division of a software development company, survived and thrived in several start-ups, and worked with clients in a variety of industries including insurance, banking, and energy. He is the co-author of two books with Ian Spence, Use Case Modeling (Addison-Wesley, 2003) and Managing Iterative Software Development Projects (Addison-Wesley, 2007), as well as many articles, especially in the areas of improving requirements and software development management practices.
Mike Perrow is a writer and editor for the Rational organization within the IBM Software Group. He is the founding editor of The Rational Edge online magazine. In that role, he has worked closely with Rational methodologists and thought leaders, including Walker Royce, Kurt Bittner, and many others, to explain the concepts of iterative software development that underlie the Rational Unified Process and related toolset. He began his career as a technical writer on mainframe systems while teaching technical writing at Old Dominion University. Since then, he has taught periodically and served as an evangelist and marketer for Imagination Systems, Powersoft, and Sybase, Inc. In his parallel life as a creative writer, he has published poems in leading literary journals, including The Southern Review, Shenandoah, and Boston Review.
Results-Based Software Management: Achieve Better Outcomes with Finite Resources
Effective software development is no longer merely an IT concern: today, it is crucial to the entire enterprise. However, most businesspeople are not ready to make informed decisions about software initiatives. The Economics of Iterative Software Development: Steering Toward Better Business Results will prepare them. Drawing on decades of software development and business experience, the authors demonstrate how to utilize practical, economics-based techniques to plan and manage software projects for maximum return on technology investments.
The authors begin by dispelling widespread myths about software costs, explaining why traditional, “engineering-based” software management introduces unacceptable inefficiencies in today’s development environments. Next, they show business and technical managers how to combine the principles of economics and iterative development to achieve optimal results with limited resources. Using their techniques, readers will learn how to build systems that enable maximum business innovation and process improvement–and implement software processes that allow them to do so consistently.
- How to repeatedly quantify the value a project is delivering and quickly adjust course as needed
- How to reduce software project size, complexity, and other “project killers”
- How to identify and eliminate software development processes that don’t work
- How to improve development processes, reduce rework, mitigate risk, and identify inefficiencies
- How to create more proficient teams by improving individual skills, team interactions, and organizational capability
- Where to use integrated, automated tools to improve effectiveness
- What to measure, and when: specific metrics for project inception, elaboration, construction, and transition
The Economics of Iterative Software Development: Steering Toward Better Business Results will help both business and technical managers make better decisions throughout the software development process–and it will help team and project leaders keep any project or initiative on track, so they can deliver more value faster.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Solid discussion on business value of iterative versus waterfall development,
This review is from: The Economics of Iterative Software Development: Steering Toward Better Business Results (Kindle Edition)This is a lean book (small size, only 170 pages) which attempts to help managers and decision makers move to iterative approaches over waterfall. The book's well written and has some good, thought-provoking discussion in it.
You won't find discussions of specific methodologies in this book, but you will find repeated emphasis on critical concepts like delivering running systems over useless documentation (not ignoring documentation, mind you, but delivering the right amount of it). Doing the right amount of planning at the project's start is also emphasized: avoiding over-architecting and big design up front.
It struck me that much of the authors' definition of "iterative" development is subtly scattered around the book. It's not always In Your Face, and that's actually OK because you're able to better focus on their deeper points.
The economics part of the book's title comes through some good discussion on ensuring you're delivering business value,... Read more
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
economics and development for managers,
This review is from: The Economics of Iterative Software Development: Steering Toward Better Business Results (Hardcover)The title of "The Economics of Iterative Software Development - Steering Toward Better Business Results" jumped out at me since I'm a software developer at a bank. Software and economics in the same title - cool!
The book is what I call good airplane reading. It's interesting to read, easy to read without a whole pile of focus, can be read in a few hours and doesn't physically weigh to much. The book is mainly geared towards software development managers. Particularly those who want to being iterative development or make their projects more iterative.
The economics comes in through the model of COCOMO, a number of graphs and formulas like net present value. It's not the kind of economics that you have to be an economist to understand. Or even like math for that matter.
In addition to the economics, the book covers things like factors for resistance to change. I particularly liked the section on measurements and how people adjust their... Read more
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The Circle of Software Life 40 years in the Making!,
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This review is from: The Economics of Iterative Software Development: Steering Toward Better Business Results (Hardcover)Congratulations Walker for clearly communicating what your father Winston tried to tell the software world 40 years ago. The waterfall was a "virus" wrongfully extracted from Winston Royce's famous 1970 paper "Managing the Development of Large Software Systems". You should have dedicated the book to him!
While some minor points in this book may be misleading for the agile novice, it contains sound advice and core reasons why companies need to improve by implementing agile processes. The basic premise is sound and the key factors of reducing complexity, getting the right people, improving the process, and creating a great development environment will help companies ready to make that commitment have a much better chance of beating the odds.
› See all 6 customer reviews...
Online Sample Chapter
Table of Contents
About the Authors xvii
Part I: The Software-Driven Economy 1
Chapter 1: The Challenge of Software Project Management 3
The High Stakes in Software Development 4
Institutional Focus 5
Traditional Software ProjectManagement 7
Problems with theWaterfall Approach 8
Chapter 2: Achieving Results: The Case for Software Economics 13
Iterative Development 15
Benefits of the Results-Based Approach 16
TheMark of Success 18
Part II: Improving Software Development Economics 21
Chapter 3: Trends in Software Economics 23
A SimplifiedModel of Software Economics 24
Software Engineering: A 40-Year History 26
Keys to Improvement: A Balanced Approach 28
Chapter 4: Reducing Software Project Size or Complexity 33
Managing Scope 33
Reducing the Size of Human-Generated Code 35
Improving Reuse Using Service-Oriented Architectures 36
Chapter 5: Improving the Development Process 39
Project Processes 39
Using an Iterative Process 40
Attacking Significant Risks Early 43
Improve Practices Incrementally to Meet Goals 46
Chapter 6: Improving Team Proficiency 51
Enhancing Individual Performance 52
Improving Project Teamwork 52
Advancing Organizational Capability 55
Chapter 7: Improving Automation Through Integrated Tools 59
Improving Human Productivity 60
Eliminating Error Sources 61
Enabling Process Improvements 62
Chapter 8: Accelerating Culture Change Through Common Sense 65
Profiles of Successful Organizations 65
Keys to Success 67
Recommendation: Select the Right Project, the Right
People, and the Right Goals 73
Part III: Practical Measurement for Software Engineering 77
Chapter 9: A Practical View of Software Development Metrics 79
Measurements and Goals 80
Variability and Goals 80
Measurement and Iterative Development 81
WhenMeasurement GoesWrong 83
What’sWrong with Detailed Up-front Planning? 85
DecidingWhat toMeasure, Phase by Phase 86
Chapter 10: What to Measure in the Inception Phase 89
Assessing Financial Viability 90
Assessing Technical Viability and Estimating Overall
Project Cost 91
Iteration in the Inception Phase 93
Chapter 11: What to Measure in the Elaboration and Construction Phases 99
Measurement in the Elaboration Phase 99
Measuring Risk Reduction 102
Measuring Progress 104
Measurement in the Construction Phase 106
Measuring the Project Backlog 107
Measuring Test Coverage 107
Measuring Build Stability 108
Expected Progress Trends in the Construction Phase 109
Chapter 12: What to Measure in the Transition Phase 113
Measurement in the Transition Phase 114
Concluding the Transition Phase 118
Chapter 13: Measuring Projects Embedded in Programs 123
Organizing Projects into Programs 124
Measuring Program Stages 127
Appendix: Getting Started with Iterative Project Management 129
Embarking on Your First Iterative Project 130
Adopting an Iterative Approach Iteratively 144
Suggested Reading 157
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