Thursday, December 25, 2008

Software Development Practice in the 21st (22nd?) Century

A couple of months ago I published an article about 10 Critical Requirements Principles for 0-Defects-Systems (on Ravens Brain). Anecdotal evidence on how I once achieved zero defects in one of my projects.

If you like the thought of reliable software (sic!) you might as well like Charles Fishman's article on the On-Board Shuttle Group, the producer of the space shuttle's software. Yes, they have a lot of money to spend, but many lives and expensive equipment are at stake.
This software never crashes. It never needs to be re-booted. This software is bug-free. It is perfect, as perfect as human beings have achieved. Consider these stats : the last three versions of the program -- each 420,000 lines long-had just one error each. The last 11 versions of this software had a total of 17 errors. -- Charles Fishman on the software product the Group puts out

BTW, they seem to use three key pracices: very detailed requirements, inspections and continuous improvement.
The way the process works, it not only finds errors in the software. The process finds errors in the process. -- Charles Fishman on the On-Board Shuttle Group's process
Happy New Year! (Note that 2009 is a year of the 21st century. Can't we do any better?)

PS: I'm going to go on vacation from Dec 28 to Jan 20. More interesting topics still to come, please be patient.

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