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Contents of

Software Endgames:
Eliminating Defects, Controlling Change, and the Countdown to On-Time Delivery

by Robert Galen

ISBN: 978-0-932633-62-0  
©2005 (now available)  328 pages   softcover  
$33.95 (plus shipping)

Subject(s): Software Management, Software Project Management, Software Testing, Team Management, Technical Leadership

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My Motivation for the Book
Intended Audience
How to Approach This Book
What We’re Not Trying to Explore

Chapter One: Introduction

You Know You’re in the Endgame When . . .
Focus of the Book: It’s Mostly About Defects
Triage Workflow
Repair Triage and Change Control Workflows
Flow of the Book

Part One: Endgame Basics

Chapter Two: Triage and Change Control Process and Meeting Framework

Different Names and Formats
Formal CCB Format
A Lightweight CCB (LW-CCB) Explored
A Quick Look at the Meeting Flow
Meeting Participant Roles
Setting Up Meeting Dynamics
Triage Meeting—Agenda Format
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Three: Developing Release Criteria and Working Views

Release Criteria or Defining Success
Better Decisions: Aspects of a Project Working View
Steps to Establishing a Working View
Examples of Working View Application Scenarios
Project Application: Example #1
Project Application: Example #2
Project Application: Example #3, Another Approach
Resetting Your Working View
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Four: Endgame Release Framework

Overview of the Framework
A Word on Strategy
Release Framework Example
Measuring Progress for the Release Framework
Ownership of the Release Framework
Updating Your Release Framework
The Impact of Granularity on Methodologies
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Five: Reducing the Rate of Change

Change Reduction Milestones for the Endgame Framework
The Notion of a Code Freeze
Beyond Code Freeze and Code Complete—Defect Repair Change Cycles
Change Reduction Anti-Patterns
How the CCB Assists in Change Reduction
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Six: Configuration Management in the Endgame

Configuration Management Readiness Checklist
Level of CM Control Granularity
Early On—Run a Practice Build Test
Beware of Changing Tools in the Endgame
The Role of Team Leaders in Configuration Management
Periodic (Nightly) Builds and Smoke Testing
Release Turnover Meetings
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Part Two: Endgame Defects

Chapter Seven: Defect Basics: Terms, Tools, Methods, and Management

Fundamental Defect Types
Basic Defect Data Fields
Defect Evolution
Introduction to Work Queues
Information Weight
Using Defects to Track Development (and Other) Work
Frequent Defect Monitoring—What Needs Attention
The Idea of Bug Advocacy
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Eight: Useful and Relevant Metrics

Find (New) Versus Fixed (Closed, Deferred)
Factoring in Priority
Factoring In Keywords
Defect Transition Progress
Functional Areas and Defect Distribution
Further Examination of Trending—Correlations to External Stimuli
Metrics Analysis Questions
Maintaining Historical Data
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Nine: The Many Ways to Fix Defects

Just Repair It
Make a Partial Repair to Reduce Impact and Severity
Log It As a Known Defect and Move On
Simply Change the Severity or Priority
Ignore It and Hope It Goes Away . . .
Consider It Anomalous Behavior and Wait for the Next Occurrence
Defer the Repair to a Later Release
Negotiate with Marketing or the Customer to Change the Requirement
Add More System Resources to Reduce the Impact
Find a Workaround (Procedural, Operational, Documentation, or Automated)
Remove the Functionality/Code
Change or Remove Interacting Software Products
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Part Three: Endgame Workflow

Chapter Ten: Work Queues and Packaging

Work Queues
Deriving Work Queues from Your Defect-Tracking System
Queue Loading Rules
How Should Testing Interact with the Work Queues?
Deal with Defect Repairs in Packages
Thinking About Package Costs
Think About Your Regression Trends
Package Plan Status and General Replanning
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Eleven: Defect Repair Selection: Other Considerations

Reproducing the Defect
Overall Level of Difficulty
Locality and Relationship to Other Defects
How Will the Repair Impact the Test Team?
Exploring Possible Workarounds
Handling Gold Features
Considering Your Available Resources
Likelihood That the Defect Will Surface in Normal Operation of the Product
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Twelve: Endgame Estimation: A Few Useful Collaborative Techniques

Defect Estimation Life Cycle
PSP PROBE Method–Proxy-Based Estimation
Wideband Delphi Method
Other Estimation Techniques
Collaborative Estimation—What to Collect
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Part Four: Endgame Management

Chapter Thirteen: Management Dynamics

The Importance of Team Leads: Clear Roles and Responsibilities
The Tone of the Endgame
Be Aware of the Natural Tension Points Across Functional Groups
Identify Your Best Debuggers
Reserve Resources or Develop Generalists for Later Repairs
Team Types: Strengths for the Endgame
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Fourteen: Leadership Practices

The Burden of Leadership
Use of Overtime
Establish a War Room
Find Room for Play
Daily Status Meetings
Gathering General Status
Handling Distributed Endgame Teams
Knowing When to Say When—Release
Knowing When to Say When—You’re in Trouble
The Testing Team—Your Secret Weapon
Wrap-Up: Additions to Your Endgame Toolbox

Chapter Fifteen: Endgame Retrospectives and Conclusions

Keeping an Endgame Log or Diary
Should You Conduct a Retrospective?
Key Points of a Retrospective
Guidelines for an Endgame Retrospective
Using Your Endgame Data in the Retrospective
Endgames Provide Wonderful Insights into the Character of Your Team
Celebrating Success
Agile Endgames
Concluding Thoughts

Afterword: An Invitation to Endgame Collaboration

Appendix A: Pre-Endgame Preparation Checklist
Appendix B: Collaborative Estimation, Data Focus Checklist
Appendix C: Sticky Note Guidelines

Note-Generator Guidelines
Note-Facilitator Guidelines
Note Formats

Appendix D: Guidelines for Constructing Endgame Release Frameworks

Historical Notes
Plan Details
Endgame Flow


Table of Contents

Dorset House Catalog

Also Recommended

Adaptive Software Development: A Collaborative Approach to Managing Complex Systems, by James A. Highsmith III

Agile Software Development in the Large: Diving Into the Deep, by Jutta Eckstein
The Deadline: A Novel About Project Management, by Tom DeMarco
Five Core Metrics: The Intelligence Behind Successful Software Management, by Lawrence H. Putnam and Ware Myers

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