Better Software Articles

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A Recipe for Success: Ingredients for Building a Great Software Team

Great people, interesting work, and smart referees make for a successful software team. Bobbie Patnode recommends some ways to keep your team engaged, including treating them well, paying them well, and training them well.

Bobbie Patnode's picture Bobbie Patnode
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's picture Robin F. Goldsmith
Packaged-Software Indigestion

Vendor reviews are a wonderful technique to taste before you swallow commercial, off-the-shelf software. They're also a great way to build a partnership with your business decision-makers on packaged-software projects, instead of being brought in late or left out completely. Here are some important things to consider when conducting a vendor review.

Eileen M. Strider's picture Eileen M. Strider
Web Load Test Planning

Predicting how a particular Web site will respond to a specific load is a real challenge. Here are three basic steps necessary to design highly realistic and accurate Web site load tests.

Alberto Savoia's picture Alberto Savoia
Reporting Systems: Tracking the Details

If you're paying the bill for all the graphics, glitz, and applets, you're going to want to have some evidence that thousands of potential customers have actually seen your Web site. Here is a step-by-step recipe for testing system, network, and Internet reporting systems.

Len DiMaggio's picture Len DiMaggio
Adventures in Automated Testing

Sometimes the best teacher is experience. Here's a look at four real-life projects, each with a different problem domain, testing approach, and test tool, and the lessons they offered in automatic test generation.

Pete TerMaat's picture Pete TerMaat
Test Design: Developing Test Cases from Use Cases

A use case is a sequence of actions performed by a system, which combined together produce a result of value to a system user. Use cases describe the "process flows" through a system based on its actual likely use, so the test cases derived from use cases are most useful in uncovering defects in the process flows during real-world use of the system. Here is an example of how a use case is used to derive and prioritize test cases.

Ross Collard's picture Ross Collard
Application Integration

Building an integrated suite of applications can be complicated, especially when several groups are working on the project in different locations. Here are some risks, as well as recommendations for allowing planning, development, and testing artifacts to be shared between disparate groups.

Sam Guckenheimer's picture Sam Guckenheimer
Untangling Communication

Software development involves sharing critical ideas in a hectic, high-pressure environment. If you want your team to excel in its software projects, it's important to understand the communication circuitry at work in your everyday interactions. Here's a look at the components of the communication process, and five common errors to avoid.

Dale Emery's picture Dale Emery
Lo-Fi GUI Design

This article takes you from “what happens before Lo-Fi Design” (understand the user) to storyboarding (with post-it notes), through final implementation. Other steps include window design (get out the scissors) and simulated execution. This thorough, step-by-step explanation of design method is supplemented with graphics and a usability sidebar.

Luke Hohmann's picture Luke Hohmann

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