Software Project Management: A Unified Framework / Edition 1

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1998 Hard cover New. No dust jacket as issued. Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 448 p. Addison-Wesley Object Technology (Hardcover). Audience: General/trade. hardcover, no dust ... jacket, new covers, clean pages, binding tight as new and unread (clean page edge). Book is shipped in a padded envelope and packaged in bubble wrap for added protection. Read more Show Less

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Overview

Software Project Management presents a new management framework uniquely suited to the complexities of modern software development. Walker Royce's pragmatic perspective exposes the shortcomings of many well-accepted management priorities and equips software professionals with state-of-the-art knowledge derived from his twenty years of successful from-the-trenches project management experience.

This book provides a clear and provocative discussion of the economics, metrics, and management strategies needed to plan and execute a software project successfully. Royce discusses-with refreshing candor-some of the fads, follies, and excesses of the software industry, clearly differentiating proven techniques from obsolete methods. Paired with this insightful examination are compelling arguments for new management approaches that are sure to stimulate debate. The relative impacts of these new techniques are quantified through simple economic analyses, common sense, and anecdotal evidence. The resulting framework strikes a pragmatic balance between theory and practice that can be readily applied in today's challenging development environment. An extensive case study of a large-scale, million-line project-deployed successfully on schedule and under budget using these techniques-further illustrates their application.

Software Project Management provides the software industry with field-proven benchmarks for making tactical decisions and strategic choices that will enhance an organization's probability of success.

This book includes:

  • Top ten principles for modern software management
  • Strategies for smoothly transitioning an organization to modern processes and technologies such as Rational's Unified process
  • Methods for keeping software engineering teams motivated and effectively prioritized
  • Insight into how technology, people, and economics impact project management.
  • Metrics and forecasting guidance for project costs, schedules, and quality control
AUTHORBIO: Walker Royce is a Vice President and General Manager at Rational Software Corporation. During the past two decades at Rational and TRW, he has performed in roles ranging from coder, designer, integrator, cost estimator, and trainer to software architect, R&D manager, product manager, and project manager.

From the backcover.

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Editorial Reviews

Gregory V. Wilson

Dancing Around the Problem

If you're like me, you had to wade through at least one dry, and apparently irrelevant, software engineering text at college. Well, guess what? You'll probably have to do it again a couple of years from now. If you do, you might want to check out the books reviewed below.

Every software developer I know believes that the Year 2000 bug is going to cause some degree of chaos. The debate tends to focus on how much, but I'm more interested in what will happen to our profession afterward. With millions of voters screaming about missing social security checks and driver's licenses that can't be renewed, politicians will want quick, tidy solutions.

I therefore predict that within a year or two there will be new laws in most jurisdictions requiring programmers to demonstrate that they meet certain professional standards in order to bid on large government contracts. And where will those standards come from? My best guess is that the top practices of the time, or at least practices with large advocacy groups, will be adopted wholesale. It really won't matter whether UML (for example) is the "right" notation for object-oriented design. It will be in the right place, at the right time, and we will all have to choose between using it, or letting big (and profitable) contracts pass us by.

All of which brings me to the first of this review's two books. Kim Caputo started on the Burroughs side of Unisys, which typically used many small teams to develop software. There was little process, and teams succeeded or failed based almost entirely on the strengths or weaknesses of their members. In contrast, the Sperry side of Unisys had lots of process documentation, but as the merged company's business changed, that documentation was becoming shelfware.

Walker Royce's Software Project Management, on the other hand, is a more traditional, but also somewhat iconoclastic, book. The introduction to Part I is a good indicator of Royce's approach:

"In the past 10 years, I have participated in the software process improvement efforts of several Fortune 500 companies. Typical goals of these efforts are to achieve a 2X, 3X, or 10X increase in productivity, qualtiy, time to market, or…all three…The funny thing is that many of these organizations have no idea what X is, in objective terms."

Royce's thesis is that many current software management practices are tied to archaic technologies and techniques. His book therefore focuses on what we should keep doing, what we should change, and why. For example, Chapter 4 is a point-by-point discussion of the points raised in Alan Davis's influential article "Fifteen Principles of Software Engineering." Royce argues that some of Davis's principles, such as evaluating design alternatives before starting construction, are anchored in the discredited waterfall model, and may actually be counter-productive in a world where iterative development is done using commodity components.

Similarly, Royce is sceptical about the benefits of code inspections, believing both that modern tools allow automated testing through the project lifecycle, and that code inspections are usually so boring that they are inevitably superficial. Perhaps his most challenging statement is that you shouldn't plan to throw this process away. Instead, you should plan to evolve your product.

Unfortunately, some of the middle chapters are bogged down with descriptions of management sets, requirements sets, and so on. These chapters discuss how the various bits and pieces of managementaria relate to one another, without actually describing what they are. For someone like me, who has never worked on a 100-person, multiyear project, it's all a bit opaque.

Despite that, I think Royce's book is worth reading, primarily because it challenges received wisdom. I came away feeling that he had tried many things, and had thought long and hard about why some approaches worked and some didn't. I believe we're all going to have to do that in about a year's time, and I recommend this book to anyone who wants to get an early start.
— Dr. Dobb's Electronic Review of Computer Books

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780201309584
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley
  • Publication date: 9/10/1998
  • Series: Addison-Wesley Object Technology Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 416
  • Product dimensions: 7.05 (w) x 9.05 (h) x 1.13 (d)

Meet the Author

Walker Royce is a Vice President and General Manager at Rational Software Corporation. During the past two decades at Rational and TRW he has performed in roles ranging from coder, designer, integrator, cost estimator, and trainer to software architect, project manager, product manager, R&D manager, technical fellow, and principal consultant.

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Read an Excerpt

The software industry moves unrelentingly toward new methods for managing the ever-increasing complexity of software projects. In the past, we have seen evolutions, revolutions, and recurring themes of success and failure. While software technologies, processes, and methods have advanced rapidly, software engineering remains a people-intensive process. Consequently, techniques for managing people, technology, resources, and risks have profound leverage.

This book captures a software management perspective that emphasizes a balanced view of these elements:

  • Theory and practice
  • Technology and people
  • Customer value and provider profitability
  • Strategies and tactics

Throughout, you should observe a recurring management theme of paramount importance: balance. It is especially important to achieve balance among the objectives of the various stakeholders, who communicate with one another in a variety of languages and notations. Herein is the motivation for the part opener art, an abstract portrayal of the Rosetta stone. The three fundamental representation languages inherent in software engineering are requirements (the language of the problem space), design (the transformation languages of software engineers), and realizations (the language of the solution space executable on computers). Just as the Rosetta stone enabled the translation of Egyptian hieroglyphics, software management techniques enable the translation of a problem statement into a solution that satisfies all stakeholders.

There is no cookbook for software management. There are no recipes for obvious good practices. I have tried to approach the issues with as much science, realism, and experience as possible, but management is largely a matter of judgment, (un)common sense, and situation-dependent decision making. That's why managers are paid big bucks.

Some chapters include sections with a pragmatic and often hard-hitting treatment of a particular topic. To differentiate this real-world guidance from the general process models, techniques, and disciplines, headings of these sections include the word pragmatic. By pragmatic I mean having no illusions and facing reality squarely, which is exactly the intent of these sections. They contain strong opinions and provocative positions, and will strike nerves in readers who are entrenched in some obsolete or overhyped practices, tools, or techniques.

I have attempted to differentiate among proven techniques, new approaches, and obsolete techniques using appropriate substantiation. In most cases, I support my positions with simple economic arguments and common sense, along with anecdotal experience from field applications. Much of the material synthesizes lessons learned (state-of-the-practice) managing successful software projects over the past 10 years. On the other hand, some of the material represents substantially new (state-of-the-art), hypothesized approaches that do not have clear substantiation in practice.

I have struggled with whether to position this book as management education or management training. The distinction may seem nitpicky, but it is important. An example I heard 15 years ago illustrates the difference. Suppose your 14-year-old daughter came home from school one day and asked, "Mom and Dad, may I take the sex education course offered at school?" Your reaction would likely be different if she asked, "May I take the sex training course offered at school?" (This meant less to me then than it does now that my three daughters are teenagers!)

Training has an aspect of applied knowledge that makes the knowledge more or less immediately useful. Education, on the other hand, is focused more on teaching the principles, experience base, and spirit of the subject, with the application of such knowledge left to the student. I have tried to focus this book as a vehicle for software management education. (I am not sure there is such a thing as management training other than on-the-job experience.) I will not pretend that my advice is directly applicable on every project. Although I have tried to substantiate as many of the position statements as possible, some of them are left unsubstantiated as pure hypotheses. I hope my conjecture and advice will stimulate further debate and progress.

My intended audience runs the gamut of practicing software professionals. Primary target readers are decision makers: those people who authorize investment and expenditure of software-related budgets. This group includes organization managers, project managers, software acquisition officials, and their staffs. For this audience, I am trying to provide directly applicable guidance for use in today's tactical decision making and tomorrow's strategic investments. Another important audience is software practitioners who negotiate and execute software project plans and deliver on organizational and project objectives.

Style

Because I am writing for a wide audience, I do not delve into technical perspectives or technical artifacts, many of which are better discussed in other books. Instead, I provide fairly deep discussions of the economics, management artifacts, work breakdown strategies, organization strategies, and metrics necessary to plan and execute a successful software project.

Illustrations are included to make these complex topics more understandable. The precision and accuracy of the figures and tables merit some comment. While most of the numerical data accurately describe some concept, trend, expectation, or relationship, the presentation formats are purposely imprecise. In the context of software management, the difference between precision and accuracy is not as trivial as it may seem, for two reasons:

  1. Software management is full of gray areas, situation dependencies, and ambiguous trade-offs. It is difficult, if not impossible, to provide an accurate depiction of many concepts and to retain precision of the presentation across a broad range of domains.
  2. Understanding the difference between precision and accuracy is a fundamental skill of good software managers, who must accurately forecast estimates, risks, and the effects of change. Unjustified precision—in requirements or plans—has proven to be a substantial, yet subtle, recurring obstacle to success.
In many of my numeric presentations, the absolute values are unimportant and quite variable across different domains and project circumstances. The relative values constitute the gist of most of the figures and tables.

I occasionally provide anecdotal evidence and actual field experience to put the management approaches into a tangible context and provide relatively accurate and precise benchmarks of performance under game conditions. Several appendixes clarify how the techniques presented herein can be applied in real-world contexts. My flagship case study is a thoroughly documented, successful, large-scale project that provides a concrete example of how well many of these management approaches can work. It also provides a framework for rationalizing some of the improved processes and techniques.

Organization The book is laid out in five parts, each with multiple chapters:

  • Part I, Software Management Renaissance. Describes the current state of software management practice and software economics, and introduces the state transitions necessary for improved software return on investment.
  • Part II, A Software Management Process Framework. Describes the process primitives and a framework for modern software management, including the life-cycle phases, artifacts, workflows, and checkpoints.
  • Part III, Software Management Disciplines. Summarizes some of the critical techniques associated with planning, controlling, and automating a modern software process.
  • Part IV, Looking Forward. Hypothesizes the project performance expectations for modern projects and next-generation software economics, and discusses the culture shifts necessary for success.
  • Part V, Case Studies and Backup Material. Five appendixes provide substantial foundations for some of the recommendations, guidance, and opinions presented elsewhere.
Acknowledgments

Although my perspective of iterative development has been influenced by many sources, I have drawn on relatively few published works in writing this book. Providing a more detailed survey of related publications might have helped some readers and satisfied some authors, but most of the correlation with my views would be coincidental.

The foundation of my material comes basically from three sources, on which I have drawn extensively:

  1. TRW's Ada Process Model Guidebook Royce, Walker, 1989. I wrote this guidebook to capture the process description implemented successfully on a large-scale TRW project so that it could be used throughout TRW.
  2. Rational Software Corporation's software management seminar Royce, Walker, 1997. I wrote this two-day seminar on software best practices to describe Rational's software management approach. The peer reviewers for this material included Don Andres (TRW), Barry Boehm (University of Southern California), Larry Druffel (Software Engineering Institute), Lloyd Mosemann (U.S. Air Force), and Winston Royce (TRW), in addition to numerous field practitioners and executives within Rational. The seminar was delivered dozens of times in the mid-1990s to a broad range of audiences, including government groups, defense contractors, and commercial organizations.
  3. Rational's Unified process. The acquisition of Objectory by Rational resulted in a large internal investment to merge the techniques of the Objectory process (focused on use-case-driven techniques) and the existing Rational process (focused on management techniques and object-oriented modeling). This investment is on-going, as Rational continues to broaden the process description and prescription across more of the life-cycle activities, tools, and methods, resulting in the Unified process.

Several other sources had a significant effect on the management process presented in this book. Their influence is the result of long-term relationships that encapsulate years of interaction, exchange of ideas, and extensive firsthand communication.

  • My association with Barry Boehm over the past 15 years has been a rich source of software engineering knowledge.
  • Don Andres's extraordinary leadership and project management expertise set him apart from the many project managers I have worked for and with, and I have learned much from him.
  • Dave Bernstein, Robert Bond, Mike Devlin, Kevin Haar, Paul Levy, John Lovitt, and Joe Marasco, senior managers at Rational, have evolved a nimble company with a clear vision of software engineering as a business.
  • Philippe Kruchten's work on software architecture and process frameworks, as well as his own field experience, has helped gel many of my perspectives and presentations.
  • Grady Booch, Ivar Jacobson, and Jim Rumbaugh, Rational's three senior methodologists, have done the software engineering community a great service in defining the Unified Modeling Language.
  • Hundreds of dedicated software professionals in the Rational field organization have been responsible for delivering value to software projects and transitioning software engineering theory into practice.

The most important influence on this work was my father, Winston Royce, who set my context, validated my positions, critiqued my presentation, and strengthened my resolve to take a provocative stand and stimulate progress.

Several people invested their own time reviewing early versions of my manuscript and contributing to the concepts, presentation, and quality contained herein. My special thanks go to Ali Ali, Don Andres, Peter Biche, Barry Boehm, Grady Booch, Doug Ishigaki, Ivar Jacobson, Capers Jones, Hartmut Kocher, Philippe Kruchten, Eric Larsen, Joe Marasco, Lloyd Mosemann, Roger Oberg, Rich Reitman, Jim Rumbaugh, and John Smith.

Finally, the overall presentation quality, consistency, and understandability of this material are substantially the work of Karen Ailor. Her critique, sense of organization, attention to detail, and aggressive nitpicking contributed greatly to the overall substance captured in this book.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

List of Figures
List of Tables
Foreword
Preface
Pt. I Software Management Renaissance 1
Ch. 1 Conventional Software Management 5
Ch. 2 Evolution of Software Economics 21
Ch. 3 Improving Software Economics 31
Ch. 4 The Old Way and the New 55
Pt. II A Software Management Process Framework 69
Ch. 5 Life-Cycle Phases 73
Ch. 6 Artifacts of the Process 83
Ch. 7 Model-Based Software Architectures 109
Ch. 8 Workflows of the Process 117
Ch. 9 Checkpoints of the Process 125
Pt. III Software Management Disciplines 135
Ch. 10 Iterative Process Planning 139
Ch. 11 Project Organizations and Responsibilities 155
Ch. 12 Process Automation 167
Ch. 13 Project Control and Process Instrumentation 187
Ch. 14 Tailoring the Process 209
Pt. IV Looking Forward 221
Ch. 15 Modern Project Profiles 225
Ch. 16 Next-Generation Software Economics 237
Ch. 17 Modern Process Transitions 247
Pt. V Case Studies and Backup Material 255
App. A The State of the Practice in Software Management 259
App. B The COCOMO Cost Estimation Model 265
App. C Change Metrics 283
App. D CCPDS-R Case Study 299
App. E Process Improvement and Mapping to the CMM 363
Glossary 391
References 397
Index 401
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Preface

The software industry moves unrelentingly toward new methods for managing the ever-increasing complexity of software projects. In the past, we have seen evolutions, revolutions, and recurring themes of success and failure. While software technologies, processes, and methods have advanced rapidly, software engineering remains a people-intensive process. Consequently, techniques for managing people, technology, resources, and risks have profound leverage.

This book captures a software management perspective that emphasizes a balanced view of these elements:

  • Theory and practice
  • Technology and people
  • Customer value and provider profitability
  • Strategies and tactics

Throughout, you should observe a recurring management theme of paramount importance: balance. It is especially important to achieve balance among the objectives of the various stakeholders, who communicate with one another in a variety of languages and notations. Herein is the motivation for the part opener art, an abstract portrayal of the Rosetta stone. The three fundamental representation languages inherent in software engineering are requirements the language of the problem space, design the transformation languages of software engineers, and realizations the language of the solution space executable on computers. Just as the Rosetta stone enabled the translation of Egyptian hieroglyphics, software management techniques enable the translation of a problem statement into a solution that satisfies all stakeholders.

There is no cookbook for software management. There are no recipes for obvious good practices. I have tried to approach the issues with as much science, realism, and experience as possible, but management is largely a matter of judgment, uncommon sense, and situation-dependent decision making. That's why managers are paid big bucks.

Some chapters include sections with a pragmatic and often hard-hitting treatment of a particular topic. To differentiate this real-world guidance from the general process models, techniques, and disciplines, headings of these sections include the word pragmatic. By pragmatic I mean having no illusions and facing reality squarely, which is exactly the intent of these sections. They contain strong opinions and provocative positions, and will strike nerves in readers who are entrenched in some obsolete or overhyped practices, tools, or techniques.

I have attempted to differentiate among proven techniques, new approaches, and obsolete techniques using appropriate substantiation. In most cases, I support my positions with simple economic arguments and common sense, along with anecdotal experience from field applications. Much of the material synthesizes lessons learned state-of-the-practice managing successful software projects over the past 10 years. On the other hand, some of the material represents substantially new state-of-the-art, hypothesized approaches that do not have clear substantiation in practice.

I have struggled with whether to position this book as management education or management training. The distinction may seem nitpicky, but it is important. An example I heard 15 years ago illustrates the difference. Suppose your 14-year-old daughter came home from school one day and asked, "Mom and Dad, may I take the sex education course offered at school?" Your reaction would likely be different if she asked, "May I take the sex training course offered at school?" This meant less to me then than it does now that my three daughters are teenagers!

Training has an aspect of applied knowledge that makes the knowledge more or less immediately useful. Education, on the other hand, is focused more on teaching the principles, experience base, and spirit of the subject, with the application of such knowledge left to the student. I have tried to focus this book as a vehicle for software management education. I am not sure there is such a thing as management training other than on-the-job experience. I will not pretend that my advice is directly applicable on every project. Although I have tried to substantiate as many of the position statements as possible, some of them are left unsubstantiated as pure hypotheses. I hope my conjecture and advice will stimulate further debate and progress.

My intended audience runs the gamut of practicing software professionals. Primary target readers are decision makers: those people who authorize investment and expenditure of software-related budgets. This group includes organization managers, project managers, software acquisition officials, and their staffs. For this audience, I am trying to provide directly applicable guidance for use in today's tactical decision making and tomorrow's strategic investments. Another important audience is software practitioners who negotiate and execute software project plans and deliver on organizational and project objectives.

Style
Because I am writing for a wide audience, I do not delve into technical perspectives or technical artifacts, many of which are better discussed in other books. Instead, I provide fairly deep discussions of the economics, management artifacts, work breakdown strategies, organization strategies, and metrics necessary to plan and execute a successful software project.

Illustrations are included to make these complex topics more understandable. The precision and accuracy of the figures and tables merit some comment. While most of the numerical data accurately describe some concept, trend, expectation, or relationship, the presentation formats are purposely imprecise. In the context of software management, the difference between precision and accuracy is not as trivial as it may seem, for two reasons:

  1. Software management is full of gray areas, situation dependencies, and ambiguous trade-offs. It is difficult, if not impossible, to provide an accurate depiction of many concepts and to retain precision of the presentation across a broad range of domains.
  2. Understanding the difference between precision and accuracy is a fundamental skill of good software managers, who must accurately forecast estimates, risks, and the effects of change. Unjustified precision-in requirements or plans-has proven to be a substantial, yet subtle, recurring obstacle to success.

In many of my numeric presentations, the absolute values are unimportant and quite variable across different domains and project circumstances. The relative values constitute the gist of most of the figures and tables.

I occasionally provide anecdotal evidence and actual field experience to put the management approaches into a tangible context and provide relatively accurate and precise benchmarks of performance under game conditions. Several appendixes clarify how the techniques presented herein can be applied in real-world contexts. My flagship case study is a thoroughly documented, successful, large-scale project that provides a concrete example of how well many of these management approaches can work. It also provides a framework for rationalizing some of the improved processes and techniques.

Organization
The book is laid out in five parts, each with multiple chapters:

  • Part I, Software Management Renaissance. Describes the current state of software management practice and software economics, and introduces the state transitions necessary for improved software return on investment.
  • Part II, A Software Management Process Framework. Describes the process primitives and a framework for modern software management, including the life-cycle phases, artifacts, workflows, and checkpoints.
  • Part III, Software Management Disciplines. Summarizes some of the critical techniques associated with planning, controlling, and automating a modern software process.
  • Part IV, Looking Forward. Hypothesizes the project performance expectations for modern projects and next-generation software economics, and discusses the culture shifts necessary for success.
  • Part V, Case Studies and Backup Material. Five appendixes provide substantial foundations for some of the recommendations, guidance, and opinions presented elsewhere.

Acknowledgments
Although my perspective of iterative development has been influenced by many sources, I have drawn on relatively few published works in writing this book. Providing a more detailed survey of related publications might have helped some readers and satisfied some authors, but most of the correlation with my views would be coincidental.

The foundation of my material comes basically from three sources, on which I have drawn extensively:

  1. TRW's Ada Process Model Guidebook [Royce, Walker, 1989]. I wrote this guidebook to capture the process description implemented successfully on a large-scale TRW project so that it could be used throughout TRW.
  2. Rational Software Corporation's software management seminar [Royce, Walker, 1997]. I wrote this two-day seminar on software best practices to describe Rational's software management approach. The peer reviewers for this material included Don Andres TRW, Barry Boehm University of Southern California, Larry Druffel Software Engineering Institute, Lloyd Mosemann U.S. Air Force, and Winston Royce TRW, in addition to numerous field practitioners and executives within Rational. The seminar was delivered dozens of times in the mid-1990s to a broad range of audiences, including government groups, defense contractors, and commercial organizations.
  3. Rational's Unified process. The acquisition of Objectory by Rational resulted in a large internal investment to merge the techniques of the Objectory process focused on use-case-driven techniques and the existing Rational process focused on management techniques and object-oriented modeling. This investment is on-going, as Rational continues to broaden the process description and prescription across more of the life-cycle activities, tools, and methods, resulting in the Unified process.

Several other sources had a significant effect on the management process presented in this book. Their influence is the result of long-term relationships that encapsulate years of interaction, exchange of ideas, and extensive firsthand communication.

  • My association with Barry Boehm over the past 15 years has been a rich source of software engineering knowledge.
  • Don Andres's extraordinary leadership and project management expertise set him apart from the many project managers I have worked for and with, and I have learned much from him.
  • Dave Bernstein, Robert Bond, Mike Devlin, Kevin Haar, Paul Levy, John Lovitt, and Joe Marasco, senior managers at Rational, have evolved a nimble company with a clear vision of software engineering as a business.
  • Philippe Kruchten's work on software architecture and process frameworks, as well as his own field experience, has helped gel many of my perspectives and presentations.
  • Grady Booch, Ivar Jacobson, and Jim Rumbaugh, Rational's three senior methodologists, have done the software engineering community a great service in defining the Unified Modeling Language.
  • Hundreds of dedicated software professionals in the Rational field organization have been responsible for delivering value to software projects and transitioning software engineering theory into practice. The most important influence on this work was my father, Winston Royce, who set my context, validated my positions, critiqued my presentation, and strengthened my resolve to take a provocative stand and stimulate progress.

Several people invested their own time reviewing early versions of my manuscript and contributing to the concepts, presentation, and quality contained herein. My special thanks go to Ali Ali, Don Andres, Peter Biche, Barry Boehm, Grady Booch, Doug Ishigaki, Ivar Jacobson, Capers Jones, Hartmut Kocher, Philippe Kruchten, Eric Larsen, Joe Marasco, Lloyd Mosemann, Roger Oberg, Rich Reitman, Jim Rumbaugh, and John Smith.

Finally, the overall presentation quality, consistency, and understandability of this material are substantially the work of Karen Ailor. Her critique, sense of organization, attention to detail, and aggressive nitpicking contributed greatly to the overall substance captured in this book.

Read More Show Less

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 2000

    Good example of 'How' to use the Unified Process

    This is a great book for those looking to balance a rapid development approach with some common sense process. It's also a good example of how to apply the techniques of the Unified Process and UML described in so many of the other 'What' books, this is more of a 'How-to'. Some chapters are dry but most contain useful info. As a senior DOD developer experienced in multi-million and billion dollar MIS-type systems, I saw several classic waterfall software projects fail miserably. I decided to start a small business and use the RAD approach with VB (still in DOD). After several years of success but with rapid growth, we're now looking for a good balance between strict process and rapid prototyping. Royce's approach has helped us achieve that goal.

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