For questions relating to the process of developing software.

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11
votes
3answers
2k views

How do you deal with changing requirements?

In my current job it feels like we have a lot requirement changes. We are an "Agile" shop, so I get that we are supposed to adjust and what not, but sometime the change is large and nothing trivial. ...
11
votes
3answers
607 views

Introducing a new JVM programming language into an established enterprise environment

Imagine that your current workplace is a Java shop. There is a lot of built-up knowledge about the Java language and there is a comprehensive build and deployment process in place to handle everything ...
11
votes
3answers
491 views

What is Configuration Management?

In all projects that I have been involved with that have had input from an outside consultant the question has been asked about what sort of Configuration Management we were using. In none of these ...
11
votes
3answers
424 views

How to roll out a feature to only a select few users

A good example of what I'm trying to ask about would be Facebook's new Timeline feature. In the beginning, only a select few were allowed access to timeline. As the feature became more solidified in ...
11
votes
1answer
294 views

Does scrum have any merit in defense contracting?

Overheard at the watercooler yesterday: "Scrum has no place in defense contracting." I tend to disagree in the sense that I believe Scrum can be tailored to work in many scenarios and I can see ...
10
votes
8answers
750 views

Should developers be involved in testing phases?

we are using a classical V-shaped development process. We then have requirements, architecture, design, implementation, integration tests, system tests and acceptance. Testers are preparing test cases ...
10
votes
10answers
578 views

How to keep management out of our development process

I'm a software engineer in an software development team. The last 3 years we worked for an internal customer on a new product. Now this product is finished we're going to work on major new features ...
10
votes
10answers
353 views

Is a developer-driven product a good thing?

I work in a company where the CEO manages the product team, who mockup features and drop in the lap of developers to then implement said features. There is some iteration of course, developer's ...
10
votes
8answers
666 views

How do you find time to work on Open Source Projects?

A bit of background: I've got a small open source project that I've started on, a basic framework which provides an object oriented means of generating HTML code (since I don't really like HTML, and I ...
10
votes
5answers
370 views

What are unique aspects of a software Lifecycle of an attack/tool on a software vulnerability?

At my local university, there is a small student computing club of about 20 students. The club has several small teams with specific areas of focus, such as mobile development, robotics, game ...
10
votes
5answers
391 views

In which fields does quality of the software product matter as much as the completion time?

Someone told me that if the software product meets clients expectations, it is good quality. But I've worked with Interaction Designers (the same kind of people who made Gmail's interface and ...
10
votes
6answers
1k views

Branching and versioning strategy for shared libraries

These posts seem related, but my brain is starting to melt, trying to think this through :P My employer has just started using source control, primarily because before they hired more developers, the ...
10
votes
4answers
629 views

How to prioritize tasks when you have multiple programming projects running in parallel?

Say you have 5 customers, you develop 2 or 3 different projects for each. Each project has Xi tasks. Each project takes from 2 to 10 man weeks. Given that there are few resources, it is desired to ...
10
votes
3answers
207 views

How do you efficiently keep your tests working as you redesign?

A well-tested codebase has a number of examples, but testing certain aspects of the system results in a codebase that is resistant to some types of change. An example is testing for specific ...
9
votes
9answers
791 views

Does code generation increase the code quality?

Arguing for code generation, I am looking for some examples of ways in which it increases code quality. To clarify what I mean by code generation, I can talk only about a project of mine: We use XML ...
9
votes
6answers
1k views

What is a good analogy to explain how software development is different than building a bridge? [duplicate]

If you had a manager, a couple of levels above you, tell you that building software is like building a bridge, how would you respond to that? If this manager truly believes that we should be able to ...
9
votes
4answers
291 views

Is it common for developers to deal with extensive change control procedures?

This question requires a bit of setup, please bear with me. Last week my company rolled out a new change management procedure. Any change destined for production requires a change control record; ...
9
votes
9answers
700 views

Should development methods squash a developer's individualism?

I'm in my final semester of college and am taking a software engineering course. In the class we learn about various software development methods. The one we focused on, and used to develop our ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

How do you keep your unit tests working when refactoring?

In another question, it was revealed that one of the pains with TDD is keeping the testing suite in sync with the codebase during and after refactoring. Now, I'm a big fan of refactoring. I'm not ...
9
votes
7answers
428 views

Should cases be reopened for bugs, or should bugs be opened as a new case?

Currently at my work place we use FogBugz for managing all our features and bugs for our different web applications. When a new feature is to be added to one of our web applications, a new Case is ...
9
votes
8answers
431 views

Moving from one man project to team project in the future. What should I be doing now in preparation and what can wait?

To elaborate I am interested in knowing what people think you need to put in place while still a one man project (team source control, documentation, builds etc) and what things don't need to be done ...
9
votes
6answers
515 views

test driven development - Who should write the tests?

Originally, it is the duty of the developer to write the test, but I noticed that in many cases/e-mature developers those cases are not giving even 80% coverage. How about I have a QA person dedicated ...
9
votes
4answers
559 views

How important is knowing functionality before coding?

I work for a software development company where the development work have been off shored to us. The on shore team handle the support and talk directly to the clients. We never talk to the clients ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

Is Agile a variant of RAD?

Wikipedia says that Agile is a type of "RAD" which I guess is incorrect. From what I know, Agile was developed becasue RAD itself was not that sucessfull in 90'S (too rigid for changes). Or am I ...
9
votes
7answers
399 views

How do you manage a complexity jump?

It seems an infrequent but common experience that sometimes you're working on a project and suddenly something turns up unexpectedly, throws a massive spanner in the works and ramps up the complexity ...
9
votes
6answers
264 views

How to make non-technical management more realistic when it comes to developing software

I manage a small in-house development team for a large organization. We develop for both internal and external clients. I find it impossible to educate the non-technical senior management about ...
9
votes
8answers
669 views

how do you document your development process?

My current state is a mixture of spreadsheets, wikis, documents, and dated folders for my input/configuration and output files and bzr version control for code. I am relatively new to programming ...
9
votes
5answers
5k views

What tool do you use for creating software development roadmaps? [closed]

It can be a specific software or a technique to express roadmaps on another medium (sheet of paper, word document, ...).
9
votes
1answer
204 views

Looking for the better way to combine deep architecture refactoring with feature based development

Problem statement: Given: TFS as Source Control Heavy desktop client application with tons of legacy code with bad or almost absent architecture design. Clients constantly requiring new features ...
8
votes
6answers
678 views

How can I complete a project as a single web developer? [closed]

I am a PHP 'developer' who codes for fun. My problem is I have never completed my large projects. Please I would like to know how experienced programmers like you are able to complete projects ...
8
votes
8answers
842 views

When developing algorithms, is skipping the pen&paper phase a bad habit? [closed]

I heard many people saying that when developing algorithms you should first use pen and paper, flowcharts and what not, so that you can focus on the algorithm itself, not worrying about the ...
8
votes
2answers
494 views

How to deal with too much pragmatism in the project?

My team and I took over a medium sized codebase over a year ago when the previous tech lead left the company. Originating from the lack of man power I fear we favored pragmatic solutions over best ...
8
votes
7answers
512 views

Acceptance tests done first…how can this be accomplished?

The basic gist of most Agile methods is that a feature is not "done" until it's been developed, tested, and in many cases released. This is supposed to happen in quick turnaround chunks of time such ...
8
votes
4answers
373 views

Rapid prototyping and refactoring

Sometimes when I start a small project (like an android app), I don´t know which approach will work out at the end, and I just go for one approach and give it a try. But if I never used this approach ...
8
votes
8answers
410 views

Programmers doing testing

I am wondering how typical it is for programmers to switch hats and do testing on each other's work. Assume that the team wants to take a "shared responsibility" approach to moving tasks from being ...
8
votes
5answers
638 views

I'm tasked with leading the documentation effort for an existing, entirely undocumented, software product - what resources are there to help me?

I'm a software developer at a technology company. I have been tasked with leading the documentation effort for the product I work on. The goal is to produce documentation internal to developer, and ...
8
votes
4answers
237 views

What are some things to be aware of when getting ready to hand a project off?

I'm current the sole developer/architect of a fairly large web application (ASP.NET MVC stack, roughly 150K+ lines of code) and the end of development is on the horizon. As such, I'm starting to think ...
8
votes
11answers
547 views

Which approach to follow for developing applications targeting multiple platforms?

For applications targeting multiple platforms, I see mainly two development approaches- Go for some JAVA-like development platform. Have one code solution and let the intermediate runtime handle ...
8
votes
4answers
440 views

Consultant in a firm that doesn't understand the tech! [closed]

I got the job as a Consultant in a firm that has 3 other programmers. My job is to rewrite all the old system in Java, Spring etc but the staff programmers only know perl and the manager does not know ...
8
votes
5answers
408 views

Leadership does not see value in standard process for machine configuration and new developer orientation

About 3 months ago our lead web developer and designer(same person) left the company, greener pastures was the reason for leaving. Good for them I say. My problem is that his department was completely ...
8
votes
1answer
386 views

User Stories with design elements in Scrum

We're implementing a Scrum workflow and I'm trying to wrap my head around user stories, when they're completed, iterations, etc. One thing we often do is work on a story during an early iteration, get ...
8
votes
1answer
297 views

What is “train” based development?

I ran across yet another new term in development methodology, and I haven't been able to find a definition for it. Specifically, it's called "train based development." Here are some examples of ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Besides Waterfall, what are other plan-driven software development methodologies?

I just read Balancing Agility and Discipline. Poor title aside, it contrasted a plan-driven project team that was employing PSP/TSP and an agile team using Extreme Programming. When the authors ...
8
votes
7answers
4k views

What should you include in a development approach document?

I'm in the middle of co-producing a "development approach" document for off-shore resources as they ramp up onto our project. The most recent (similar) document our company has used is over 80 pages, ...
8
votes
4answers
444 views

Where to put details about the acceptance criteria of a user story?

In this blog post about acceptance criteria the author explains that good acceptance criteria should: State an intent not a solution (e.g. “The user can choose an account” rather than “The user can ...
8
votes
2answers
583 views

Interview: how to ask development process/culture related questions

I just watched a presentation about simplicity by Rich Hickey at InfoQ where he goes over the constructs programmers use to produce artifacts and how those constructs make various trade-offs when it ...
8
votes
4answers
417 views

What are benefit/drawbacks of classifying defects during a peer code review

About 3 months ago, our engineering group rolled out Review Board to be used for all peer code reviews. Today, I had a discussion with one of the people involved in that process and found out that we ...
8
votes
1answer
469 views

Any empirical evidence on the efficacy of CMMI?

I am wondering if there are any studies that examine the efficacy of software projects in CMMI-oriented organizations. For example, are CMMI organizations more likely to finish projects on time and/or ...
7
votes
5answers
3k views

Manufacturing vs Software Development [closed]

It's often said that the software industry is immature compared to manufacturing. Specifically with regard to being process driven. Question: Can we as developers learn from the processes of the ...
7
votes
5answers
649 views

should you always enter a bug in a bug tracking system [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Should developers enter bugs into the bug tracking system? Should I log trivial fixes? For a project I'll be doing in school soon I will be working with 6 other ...