For questions relating to the process of developing software.

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12
votes
5answers
496 views

Which format is best for the first prototype not on paper? [closed]

Console app (my favorite), quick & sloppy form, MS Paint (for GUI); what works best most of the time for your standard application? why?
12
votes
5answers
972 views

How to start a development project when there are too many potential stakeholders

I've just taken on a new job at a college as (the sole) Web application developer. The college has a number of disparate but all pretty badly coded legacy systems. Mostly built in PHP they deal with ...
12
votes
10answers
1k views

Why does it seem so hard for non programmers to understand versioning? [duplicate]

In the past I have worked with designers, BAs and project managers, all who regularly produce project artifacts, yet very really do they understand the concept of versioning. When I try to explain it ...
12
votes
5answers
2k views

What is “egoless programming”?

I first heard this term about fifteen years ago. My understanding is similar to that described in the Wikipedia article and a TechRepublic article: you work with your colleagues in a "friendly, ...
12
votes
7answers
584 views

Where do you draw the line between quantity and quality? [duplicate]

My manager has talked with me and says that the quality of my work is excellent, but I need to step up the quantity of how much I crank out. I've only been working for a couple of years, so I still ...
12
votes
5answers
604 views

What should I do if I don't have any formal spec? [duplicate]

I recently was assigned to a task, but it says only a couple of words, like, do it as it made there, with no actual spec attached. What is the best thing to do in that circumstances?
12
votes
8answers
610 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 ...
12
votes
4answers
712 views

Is it wrong to use Agile when clients' requirements don't change at all?

I have seen a lot of posts recently saying that one of the major reasons why Agile is used is because clients often change the requirements. However, let's say the clients do not change the ...
12
votes
4answers
5k views

How do you deal with changing requirements? [closed]

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. ...
12
votes
6answers
536 views

How well defined should a software product be before starting to code?

I wanted to know how well people generally define a software product before actually beginning to code and how well it has worked for them? I am referring to defining use cases, analyzing risk, ...
12
votes
3answers
721 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 ...
12
votes
8answers
966 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 ...
12
votes
3answers
462 views

How can we keep track of which version of our code is in each environment?

My team currently uses a fairly simple branching/deployment process that looks like this: ┌────────┐ ┌────┐ ┌──────┐ Environments: │ DEV │ │ QA │ │ PROD │ ...
12
votes
4answers
687 views

Developing with confidence without a real development environment

I've recently been hired for a project that involves working with and around several third-party "enterprise" systems. Due to what I imagine would be the astronomical cost and effort required to build ...
12
votes
3answers
674 views

Using bug-tracking / issue-tracking software to discuss design questions, new tools etc

Does anybody have experience with using a bug-tracking / issue-tracking software like bugzilla, mantis or JIRA not only for bugs or tasks, but to initiate and maintain discussions that in the end lead ...
12
votes
3answers
390 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 ...
12
votes
2answers
384 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 ...
12
votes
2answers
991 views

Have you tried programming via Collaborative Text Editing? [duplicate]

Lately I've been experimenting with using a collaborative text editor (or plugin such as NppNetNote for Notepad++) for two or more partners to edit source code. I've been met with unexpected success, ...
11
votes
8answers
2k views

What are the biggest bottlenecks when developing large projects? [closed]

Let's say that my company was to develop a replica of MS Word (just as an example). What would be the bottleneck to the development process, assuming that one has infinite cash available and an ...
11
votes
10answers
689 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 ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Software Manager who makes developers do Project Management

I'm a software developer working in an embedded systems company. We have a Project Manager, who takes care of the overall project schedule (including electrical, quality, software and manufacturing) ...
11
votes
6answers
490 views

How can we only include ready-to-be-released features in our production releases every other week?

I'm a software developer on a fairly large agile team (we have eight developers actively making changes to a single code repository). Every two weeks, we push a new version of our software to ...
11
votes
6answers
948 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 ...
11
votes
8answers
858 views

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

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 ...
11
votes
3answers
677 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
804 views

Why create a Logger object instead of using static logging methods across an application?

Taking an example of a simple Ruby on Rails application. It creates a Logger object during application load process: # in environment.rb config.logger = Logger.new(<STDOUT | file | whatever>) ...
11
votes
2answers
6k 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 ...
11
votes
6answers
239 views

How do you create a software process for a project?

As I've written about in other questions here, the project that I'm working on now has no software process. That means no documentation (including hard copy requirements or specification), no source ...
11
votes
1answer
605 views

Slicing up the Development Stack - diagonally?

We've got a new project going on, and at the moment developers have been split into two teams, team A and team B. This project has 2 parts to it which require development throughout the development ...
11
votes
3answers
510 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
6answers
2k 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 ...
11
votes
4answers
934 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
10answers
1k 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 ...
10
votes
8answers
1k 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
6answers
3k 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 ...
10
votes
10answers
410 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
5answers
389 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 ...
9
votes
5answers
5k 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 ...
9
votes
9answers
717 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
3answers
824 views

Are XML Comments Necessary Documentation?

I used to be a fan of requiring XML comments for documentation. I've since changed my mind for two main reasons: Like good code, methods should be self-explanatory. In practice, most XML ...
9
votes
7answers
489 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
2answers
667 views

How to deal with too much pragmatism in the project? [duplicate]

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 ...
9
votes
5answers
8k views

How similiar should the environments of PreProd and Prod be?

I've just recently been on a project and during the release, we realized that it didn't work in Production. It works in all other environments but because we have a separate release team, and we ...
9
votes
4answers
697 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
4answers
458 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 ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

Technique to Solve Hard Programming logic

I have heard about many techniques which are used by developer/software manager to solve hard programming logic or to create flow of an application and this flow will be implemented by developers to ...
9
votes
3answers
364 views

How best to involve junior developer in designing an application from scratch? [closed]

We are a team of 3 developers (2 experienced devs and a junior). We just started a brand new project. We've designed the application, concentrated efforts on choosing the right architecture and now ...
9
votes
4answers
266 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 ...
9
votes
11answers
575 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 ...
9
votes
11answers
1k views

Is it correct to fix bugs without adding new features when releasing software for system testing?

This question is to experienced testers or test leads. This is a scenario from a software project: Say the dev team have completed the first iteration of 10 features and released it to system ...