RBCS is pleased to feature a special guest author for our newsletter article, Capers Jones. Capers Jones is, of course, a long-standing force for improving the software engineering industry, and has published a number of books that I consider essential reading for software professionals who seek to truly understand, through data and facts, what happens on software projects. Recently, he published an important book on software quality, The Economics of Software Quality. So, I asked Capers if he'd be willing to contribute a guest article, and he graciously agreed. This article, on software quality today and tomorrow, gives us a sobering view of our current situation, but also provides clear direction on what we need to do to get better. The good news is that we already have many of the tools we need to improve software quality. -- Rex Black
In 2012 large software projects are hazardous business undertakings. More than half of software projects larger than 10,000 function points (about 1,000,000 lines of code) are either cancelled or run late by more than a year.
When examining troubled software projects, it always happens that the main reason for delay or termination is due to excessive volumes of serious defects. Conversely, large software projects that are successful are always characterized by excellence in both defect prevention and defect removal. It can be concluded that achieving state of the art levels of software quality control is the most important single objective of software process improvements.
Quality control is on the critical path for advancing software engineering from its current status as a skilled craft to become a true profession.
Read this article → (PDF 311 kB)