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Why software engineering?

Demand for software is growing dramatically


costs are growing per system Many projects have cost overruns Many projects fail altogether Software engineering seeks to find ways to build systems that are on time and within budget

Demand for larger software systems

What growth pattern do you see in the following?

F4 fighter had no digital computer and software (Early 70s). F16A had 50 digital processors and 135 KLOC (Late 70s). F16D had 300 digital processors and 236 KLOC (Late 80s). B-2 has over 200 digital processors and 5000 KLOC.

Software components are growing exponentially

Software development costs

What can you infer from the graph?
Hardware costs vs. Software costs Hardware costs

Software costs are increasing as hardware costs continue to decline.

Hardware technology has made great advances Simple and well understood tasks are encoded in hardware Least understood tasks are encoded in software Demands of software are growing Size of the software applications is also increasing Hence the software crisis

Software costs


State of the practice

What can you infer from this chart?
Estimate 13,000 130,000 Early 6.06% 1.24% On Time 74.77% 60.76% Delayed 11.83% 17.67% Canceled 7.33% 20.33% 48.00% 65.00%





Source: Patterns of software failures and successes, Capers Jones, 1996

Delays common with mid- to large projects. Majority of the large projects are canceled.

What can you infer from this chart?

60 50 40 30 20 10 0

Cost overrun



Source: The Standish Group, 1994

Successful projects (16.2%) - Delivered fully functional on time and on budget. Challenged (52.7%) - Deliver less than full functionality, over-budget and late. Impaired (31.1%) - Cancelled during development.

Software development costs and consequences

Failures resulting from software errors have varied consequences ranging from minor inconveniences to catastrophic loss of life & property:
Air Traffic Control (FAA modernization): - $5.6 billion cost overrun. - 8 year delay. - 2 systems are canceled - Requirements for the third have been decreased by 48%. US Navy Finance System: - 4 times cost overrun. - Canceled after 9 years. Flaw in Therac-25 control system caused radiation overdoses - Consequences were injury and deaths

Software development process has stages

Requirements analysis and definition:

Establish the applications goals and constraints in consultation with users Establish the systems architecture


Implementation and unit testing:

Realize the design as a set of programs or program units Unit testing verifies that each unit meets its specification

Integration and system testing:

Integrate the program units and test as a complete system


Correct errors, improve implementation, and enhance the systems services as new requirements are discovered

Relative costs to fix errors: What can you infer from this graph?
80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10





Cost to fix an error increases as it is found later and later in the software lifecycle



What is the primary driver of software costs? What can you infer from the following graphic?
3% 8% 7% 15%

Requirements -- 3% Design -- 8% Implementation -- 7% Testing -- 15% Maintenance -- 67%


Most money and effort spent in testing and maintenance But: 85% of errors are introduced during requirements analysis and design

Why are software projects late?

Estimating techniques are poorly developed
Estimates are based on optimism: - Programmers are optimistic.
- Assume All will go well with the project. - Dont plan for slippage. - This is the last bug. - Its going to work this time!

Optimism could be because of the nature of creativity: - Conception of an idea and its implementation.
- Medium of creation constrains our ideas. - In case of software the medium is infinitely malleable. - Expect a few problems in implementation.

Our techniques of estimating are poorly developed. More seriously they reflect an unvoiced assumption which is quite untrue, that is, that all will go well. -- Fred Brooks, The Mythical Man-Month

Why are software projects late? (contd..)

Does effort necessarily == progress?
Is one man working six months equal to six men working one month?
Unit of man-month implies that men and month are interchangeable.

- True only when a task can be partitioned among many workers with no communication between them. - For sequential tasks, more effort has no effect on the schedule. - Many tasks in software engineering have sequential constraints.

Our estimating techniques fallaciously confuse effort with progress, hiding the assumption that men and months are interchangeable. - Fred Brooks, The Mythical Man-Month

Why software projects are late? (contd..)

Managers do not monitor progress effectively

Schedule slips day-by-day. Day-by-day slips are harder to recognize, harder to prevent and harder to make up. How does a software project get to be a year late? One day at a time! Fred Brooks, The Mythical Man-Month

Why are software projects late ? (contd..) When we recognize slippage, should we add more people?
Most tasks require communication among workers. Communication consists of: - Training. - Sharing information (intercommunication). Training affects effort at worst linearly, with the number of people. For n workers, intercommunication adds n(n-1)/2 to effort. - If each worker must communicate with every other worker. Adding more people to an already late project is usually like Adding gasoline to fire!

Brooks' Law: Adding manpower to a late software project makes it later. Fred Brooks, The Mythical Man-Month

What software engineering is and is not..

Software engineering is concerned with engineering software systems, that is, building and modifying software systems:
on time, within budget, meeting quality and performance standards, delivering the features desired/expected by the customer.

Software engineering is not

Just building small or new systems. Hacking or debugging until it works. Easy, simple, boring or even pointless!

Critical aspects of our day to day lives depend on software, yet software development lacks the rigor and discipline of mature engineering disciplines:

Too many projects get delayed, costs and schedules slip

Software engineering seeks to bring discipline and rigor to the building and maintenance of software systems

Study of software engineering focuses on three key elements: process, methods and tools

Why is important to consider alternative models of the software development process?