Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The Basic Steps In Software Development Process

A personal computer is now an important part of our modern lives. We connect to the world using a computer, software and an Internet connection. But do you know that the browser, email client, and chat or instant messenger you are using underwent a structured and standardized system known as software development process before they were deployed for public use? It sounds geeky, yes, but that is how the world of technology works. Without these standardized software development process or processes, we wouldn't enjoy Internet browsing as much as we do now. No standard means a lot of bugs and obsolete software.

The software development process is a lot more complicated to do than to talk about how it works. For us all uninitiated in the complex and intriguing world of software development, we can know the basic software development process activities or steps in an easy to understand terminologies.

The very first step in software development process is requirements analysis (1st). In this stage, the software engineer determines the need of a client and enumerates or itemizes each feature that the client may require. Of course a software engineer does this with the client in mind; he must include only those features that his client will understand. The overall outcome of the software must be 'user friendly' in its final stage.

Every software feature that an engineer has listed will be put in mathematical terms on the Specification (2nd) stage. He will determine in this stage if his requirements analysis is feasible for coding. It is also in this stage that he determines whether or not he needs to trim down his features list and introduce the removed featured on the next version of the software.

When a features list is put in mathematical terms, it is handed down to someone who will do the Software Architecture (3rd) or the abstract representation of the software system. It is in this stage that the software engineer determines the compatibility of the software to all types of operating system.

When the architecture is ready, the Coding (Implementation, 3rd Stage) begins. The codes will undergo Testing (4th) and Documentation (5th), which will be the basis for Training and Support (6th). The software development process ends with Maintenance (7th) where engineers fix any bugs and enhance it to meet the latest operating system requirements.



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