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Creating a Software
Engineering Culture

by Karl E. Wiegers

*Now in softcover, at a lower price*

ISBN: 978-0-932633-76-7  
©1996  384 pages   softcover  
$36.95 (plus shipping)

Subject(s): Software Methodologies, Software Project Management, Software Project Reviews

*For UPS Ground within U.S. only.
For more info., or for Int.'l or rush orders, click here.

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A Practical, Tactical Approach to
Software Quality and Process Improvement

Winner of a Software Development Productivity Award

About the Book

Written in a remarkably clear style, Creating a Software Engineering Culture presents a comprehensive approach to improving the quality and effectiveness of the software development process.

In twenty chapters spread over six parts, Wiegers promotes the tactical changes required to support process improvement and high-quality software development. Throughout the text, Wiegers identifies scores of culture builders and culture killers, and he offers a wealth of references to resources for the software engineer, including seminars, conferences, publications, videos, and on-line information.

With case studies on process improvement and software metrics programs and an entire Part on action planning (called "What to Do on Monday"), this practical book guides the reader in applying the concepts to real life.

Topics include software culture concepts, team behaviors, the five dimensions of a software project, recognizing achievements, optimizing customer involvement, the project champion model, tools for sharing the vision, requirements traceability matrices, the capability maturity model, action planning, testing, inspections, metrics-based project estimation, the cost of quality, and much more!

Principles from Part 1

  • Never let your boss or your customer talk you into doing a bad job.
  • People need to feel the work they do is appreciated.
  • Ongoing education is every team member's responsibility.
  • Customer involvement is the most critical factor in software quality.
  • Your greatest challenge is sharing the vision of the final product with the customer.
  • Continual improvement of your software development process is both possible and essential.
  • Written software development procedures can help build a shared culture of best practices.
  • Quality is the top priority; long-term productivity is a natural consequence of high quality.
  • Strive to have a peer, rather than a customer, find a defect.
  • A key to software quality is to iterate many times on all development steps except coding: Do this once.
  • Managing bug reports and change requests is essential to controlling quality and maintenance.
  • If you measure what you do, you can learn to do it better.
  • You can't change everything at once. Identify those changes that will yield the greatest benefits, and begin to implement them next Monday.
  • Do what makes sense; don't resort to dogma.

This Title Is Now Also Available As an eBook Through Pearson Education at www.informit.com. To Order,

Click Here


". . . full of good advice on what institutional and team policies help to promote good software practices among engineers. . . .

"Although this book is aimed at managers, as with most books of this nature, all levels of engineers can benefit by reading it. You can use the tips in this book to either improve your own engineering culture, or to identify the problems in your group, that you just haven't quite been able to put a finger on."

 —Mark A. Herschberg

". . . the book leads you through the phases of system development, focusing on practical problems and suggesting project-oriented solutions that use modern, proven methodologies. Even though Wiegers clearly has preferences, he also provides excellent, well-written descriptions of alternative methodologies."

"This book is essential reading for anyone responsible for systems development and, even more importantly, for anyone responsible for managing teams of systems developers. Well written and easy to read, it is filled with information that will definitely help improve your products' quality."

 —Sorel Reisman
IEEE Software

"The most important thing this book does is make you aware that the software engineering culture within your organization is critical to the success of development projects.

". . . Karl Wiegers writes using a practical manner that leaves you asking for more. A must-read for anyone interested in improving the way they develop software."

 —Scott Ambler
Software Development

"Throughout the book, every step in the process, from the first idea down to the post release bug fixes, is stated, developed and critiqued from a team perspective. The author is a software process engineer who has clearly learned from his experience, both positive and negative."

 —Charles Ashbacher
Charles Ashbacher Technologies
Mathematics and Computer Education

"Firmly rooted in the experiences of its author, this book offers the reader not just practical ideas of what to do, but also of ways to learn and think while doing them."

 —Brian O'Laughlin
Software QA

"Karl Wiegers' new book has a good chance of joining the select few books that top 100,000 copies and become standard references for the software engineering world. What Karl's book has in common with the classic software engineering books are these four factors:

  • It starts a new theme of important research or goes beyond its competitors.
  • It covers important and practical topics dealing with day-to-day problems.
  • It is well written and easy to read.
  • It includes real data rather than just the author's opinions.

"What sets Karl's book apart from the other treatments is that it deals with how real people react to changes, to mandates, to new methods, and to both success and failure in their work.

". . . not just a theoretical discussion of how software engineering is supposed to work, but rather some informed observations of how things really do work in an actual company that wants to improve software. . . .

". . . a graceful writing style, clear illustrations, and a very extensive set of bibliographic references. . . . a welcome addition to the software engineering literature."

 —Capers Jones
Software Productivity Research, Inc.

"I give it Four Stars! A book in which both managers and technicians can find practical guidance in their common quest for a more productive, healthier, and happier software development organization."

 —Tim Lister
Principal, Atlantic Systems Guild

". . . an insightful description of a healthy software engineering culture. His culture builder and culture killer tips present good commonsense advice to both software developers and managers on how to evolve a professional culture. . . . a very readable book."

 —Bill Curtis
Co-Founder and Chief Scientist

Table of Contents

Dorset House Catalog
This Book's Flyer

Also Recommended

Handbook of Walkthroughs, Inspections, and Technical Reviews, by Daniel P. Freedman and Gerald M. Weinberg

The One Minute Methodology, by Ken Orr

Practical Project Management: Restoring Quality to DP Projects and Systems, by Meilir Page-Jones

Project Retrospectives: A Handbook for Team Reviews, by Norman L. Kerth

Waltzing with Bears: Managing Risk on Software Projects, by Tom DeMarco and Timothy Lister

How to Order

To order this book by credit card directly from Dorset House in New York, please call (800) 342-6657 or (212) 620-4053, weekdays, 9am to 6pm. Alternatively, print out our Faxable Order Form and fax to (212) 727-1044.

To order this book from an online bookstore, please see above.

To purchase at a bookstore, contact our Recommended Booksellers to verify availability. Any store can order from Dorset House using the book's title and ISBN number. Also, bookstores can order our books through Baker & Taylor.

We'd like to make it easy for you to order, so please contact us at any time for help!

New:3143 Broadway, Suite 2B  New York, New York 10027  USA
1-800-DH-BOOKS or 212-620-4053, fax 212-727-1044
Copyright © 1996-2008 by Dorset House Publishing Co., Inc. All rights reserved.
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