Better Software Magazine Articles

The Risk in Risk Management

What happens when you perceive a future risk, and others don't? Peter de Jager lays out the hazards of being a risk management visionary.

Peter de Jager's picture Peter de Jager
Houston, We Have a Problem

Errors start with individuals, and a primary job of testers/QA people is to prevent those errors in the first place. But an equally important part of the job is to find them once they are there, understanding that errors will happen. Jon Hagar asks, "What can we do personally, above and beyond the normal day-to-day jobs that we testers and developers have?"

Jon Hagar's picture Jon Hagar
Reference Point: The Software Project Manager's Handbook

The Software Project Manager's Handbook is an excellent reference for the experienced or moderately experienced project managers who are looking to expand their "bag of tricks." Use this book as a reference to bone up on a specific topic, or use the case studies and questions to help you design and implement a feasible project plan.

Maureen A. O’Hara
The Ariane 5: A Smashing Success

On June 4, 1996, the maiden flight of the Ariane 5 satellite launcher ended spectacularly after only forty seconds, with bits of the $67 billion vehicle and its payload spread over a fairly large part of French Guiana. The report issued July 19 by the International Inquiry Board noted that the fiery crash was due to a "chain of technical events." The details of that particular chain of events are reviewed here.

Les Hatton
Managers Are Just for Budget Cutting, Right?

Luisa Consolini tells us why the managerial side of quality is as important as the technical side. The precepts she imparts are: 1) there is something as bad as not doing testing—not managing it; 2) if you don't manage quality, you won't improve it just by applying some fancy quality techniques; and 3) people are not second to quality.

Luisa Consolini
Welcome to Software Testing and Quality Engineering

Technical Editor Brian Marick introduces the first issue of STQE magazine. He says the magazine "is for people who get their hands dirty, whether by writing tests, cranking out code, managing others, or--perhaps the hardest task of all--being the internal QA consultant who has no direct authority but must somehow persuade ten projects with impossible deadlines to think strategically."

Brian Marick
Anticipating Human Error

This article makes three points. First, errors happen. Second, systems can encourage errors. Third, a basic understanding of the kinds of errors humans make can help us design better systems. Here are some suggestions to help avert trouble.
 

Ramon M. Felciano
It's January 1, 2000 . . . What Have You Overlooked?

You have a Y2K effort in place, and it's all about preparation for an event you know is coming. What have you overlooked that’s going to bite you? This article will help give you 20-20 foresight to anticipate potential "gotchas."

Robin F. Goldsmith
Keys to Setting Achievable Goals

David Schmaltz identifies five types of goals—aspirations, constraints, regulators, targets, and legacies—and shows how to find common understanding and create meaningful objectives in team projects.

David A. Schmaltz
User-Driven Design

It doesn't matter when you deliver, if you build the wrong product. Development entails inferences and assumptions about the user, which are supposed to guide the build-process. However, even if development successfully matches the inferences and assumptions about the user, if those criteria don't match the Real User, the product fails. This article talks about how to incorporate the user into the requirements and design phase.

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