Better Software Magazine Articles

A Small Matter of Metrics

Think you’re ready to launch your new metrics program? Think again. Find out how conducting a trial measurement program on yourself first can give you valuable insights and understanding. Learn about the value and limits of measurement, gain knowledge into why many software measurement efforts fail, and prepare yourself for launching a successful program.

Dave W. Smith
Show and Tell

It's critical that you discover the defects before your customers do. Metrics give you plenty of data, but creating charts and graphs that properly showcase this data can be difficult. In this article, read about six techniques that can help make this task a lot easier.

Metrics That Matter: Making Measurements Meaningful for Everyone

Metrics are only worthwhile if you review and use them. Do your quality reports go directly from the inbox to the trash can? A quality metrics program can be a great asset to your organization. Engineering, sales, and the company overall can benefit from having such a program. This article will help you explore ways to make measurements meaningful outside of QA.

Marsha Holliday
A Measured Response

An infinite number of metrics can be applied to various aspects of software development. In fifteen years of managing software development, Mike Cohn has found a handful of metrics that really help him do his job--and keep him cool and confident when the heat is on. Here, he describes product stabilization metrics, programmer quality metrics, customer satisfaction metrics, and complexity metrics.

Mike Cohn's picture Mike Cohn
Why Nobody in Our Business Can Estimate

Tim Lister gives three examples of software project failures that resulted from poor estimates. The main problem? Software practitioners often don't understand the difference between an estimate and a goal. Here is some advice on how to be better estimators.

Tim Lister's picture Tim Lister
Forecasting Software Defects

The six weeks of testing you've been preparing for are suddenly reduced to one, but you still want to provide some assessment of overall quality. Read about this statistical approach to predicting the number of failed test cases in an application.

TechWell Contributor's picture TechWell Contributor
Don't Use Bug Counts to Measure Testers

Cem Kaner tells us why we should not use bug counts to measure testers. Using examples, he illustrates two problems: 1) bug counts are poor measures of individual performance; and 2) the side effects of using bug counts as a measure are serious.

Cem Kaner
Measuring and Managing Performance in Organizations

Don Gray recommends Measuring and Managing Performance in Organizations by Robert D. Austin. The book is not a five-step program toward measurement success; instead, it gives an in-depth look at what makes or breaks measurement systems. The book presents information in an intuitive way; if you understand algebra and simple logic, you will understand what Austin is presenting.

Don Gray's picture Don Gray
On the Cost of Quality

Technical Editor Brian Lawrence explains four types of costs of quality: prevention, appraisal, internal failure, and external failure.

Brian Lawrence
Making Numbers Count

Numbers count—no two ways about it. But any numbers you include in a bug report should also include the appropriate units of measure. In an example from their experience, David Wilson and Leonidas Hepis explain the importance of using consistent terminology and units of measure.

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