Better Software Magazine Articles

Managing the End Game: Avoiding End-of-Project Complications by putting the Test Team in Charge

Experiencing end-of-project woes? Read how one test team guided the work at the end of a project by establishing daily goals to meet weekly objectives; by grading the product with a two-tiered approach; and by posting frequent status reports.

Cindy Necaise
A Study in Failures

Examples of mistakes, manifestations, and problems help us understand all parts of the software. Brian Marick suggests Web resources that examine software failures.

Brian Marick
Tactical Project Management at a Startup

Ulla Merz explains the role of a project manager at a startup company. She addresses topics such as requirements definition and project schedule; project status meetings; and establishing a change control board.

Ulla Merz
Reference Point: The Software Project Manager's Handbook

The Software Project Manager's Handbook is an excellent reference for the experienced or moderately experienced project managers who are looking to expand their "bag of tricks." Use this book as a reference to bone up on a specific topic, or use the case studies and questions to help you design and implement a feasible project plan.

Maureen A. O’Hara
Welcome to Software Testing and Quality Engineering

Technical Editor Brian Marick introduces the first issue of STQE magazine. He says the magazine "is for people who get their hands dirty, whether by writing tests, cranking out code, managing others, or--perhaps the hardest task of all--being the internal QA consultant who has no direct authority but must somehow persuade ten projects with impossible deadlines to think strategically."

Brian Marick
How to Survive the Software Swamp

For a project to make long-term progress, it must build a platform of basic engineering practices. On this platform are set the ladders of advanced techniques that you select using risk analysis. Properly managed, these processes help you avoid falling back into the swamp whenever the project is under pressure.

Michael Deck
Testing and Quality: Are You As Bored As I Am?

The next time someone says to you something like, "You can't test quality into a software project," you might reply, "Well, you can't manage it in either." There may be a pregnant pause, but perhaps it will lead to thoughtful discussions about testing and quality. At the very least, it'll make those twin subjects a whole lot less (shh!) Dullsville and boring!

Robert Glass
Packaged-Software Indigestion

Vendor reviews are a wonderful technique to taste before you swallow commercial, off-the-shelf software. They're also a great way to build a partnership with your business decision-makers on packaged-software projects, instead of being brought in late or left out completely. Here are some important things to consider when conducting a vendor review.

Eileen M. Strider
Application Integration

Building an integrated suite of applications can be complicated, especially when several groups are working on the project in different locations. Here are some risks, as well as recommendations for allowing planning, development, and testing artifacts to be shared between disparate groups.

Sam Guckenheimer
Keys to Setting Achievable Goals

David Schmaltz identifies five types of goals—aspirations, constraints, regulators, targets, and legacies—and shows how to find common understanding and create meaningful objectives in team projects.

David A. Schmaltz

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