Better Software Articles

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A Sticky Situation: Low-Tech Test Tools to the Rescue

The testing craft is sometimes fascinated with high-tech, expensive tools that are intended to help managers keep up to date on what's going on. Yet, sometimes heavyweight tools aren't necessary. Michael Bolton describes how Paul Holland, a senior test manager, uses a decidedly low-tech approach to track and illustrate the testing story.

Michael Bolton's picture Michael Bolton
Creative Agility

Many new products being developed require the contribution of artists and other such "creatives," but artists often view the creative process as an organic thing that cannot be analyzed, dissected, or reduced to a set of defined practices without killing it. This article explores barriers such as these to the introduction of agile methods and how these barriers can be overcome.

Clinton  Keith 's picture Clinton Keith
Why Do Requirements Matter?

A series of dining mishaps leads Lee to reflect on why mistakes happen in spite of well-defined requirements.

Lee Copeland's picture Lee Copeland
Once Upon A Retrospective

Children can teach us some extremely profound things--often when we least expect it. Jennitta Andrea shares sage advice about project retrospectives that she learned while perusing the well-known children's stories on her daughter's bookshelf. These insights will help improve the way you plan, facilitate, and participate in project retrospectives.

Jennitta Andrea's picture Jennitta Andrea
Content (and Creativity) Is King in 2012

A letter from the Better Software magazine editor.

Heather Shanholtzer's picture Heather Shanholtzer
Seven Ways to Make Testing Irrelevant on Your Team

Testers and developers can be friends. In fact, on teams working at a breakneck pace to deliver software, they must be friendly enough to rely on each other. However, there are a few sure-fire ways to ruin that relationship before it begins—and potentially make testing both irrelevant and unwelcome. Marlena Compton lists seven such ways here, along with suggestions for avoiding disaster.

Marlena Compton's picture Marlena Compton
Software for Good: The Maker Movement

Communities are sprouting up all over the world to provide an outlet for those who want to create new things and hack existing ones. In this article, Jonathan Speicher writes about one such group, HackPittsburgh, some of the projects he’s worked on, and the value the maker movement brings to those who work in the software industry.

Jon Speicher's picture Jon Speicher
Alternative JVM Languages For Java Projects

Java Virtual Machine has become a successful platform for applications written in many languages, not just Java. Alternatives like JRuby, Scala, Clojure, and Groovy can be more concise and offer new ways to approach problems.

Daniel Wellman's picture Daniel Wellman
Software Project Managers: Know Your Business Case

Many professionals in the software industry chose to pursue software to avoid business schools and MBAs. In this article, Payson explains that some of that "Business BS" can be useful both tactically and strategically to software project managers.

Payson Hall's picture Payson Hall
Goodhart’s Law

Charles Goodhart stated: "Any observed statistical regularity will tend to collapse once pressure is placed upon it for control purposes." In other words, "When a measure becomes a target, it ceases to be a good measure."

Lee Copeland's picture Lee Copeland

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