Computerworld. Dec 14, 1992, Vol. 26 Issue 50, p109, 3 p.
Management, Applications programming, MIS, Strategic Planning, Prototype, Design, Applications programming -- Management, and Management information systems -- Management
The rapid evolutionary development method of software development is an efficient, cost-saving method that relies on rapid prototyping and on system flexibility to respond to users' needs. First of all, developers should plan the project's evolution by interviewing users and dividing their requests into needs, wants and wishes. Next, developers should create a prototype system that resembles the projected finished system as closely as possible, in order to obtain the most useful user feedback possible. Then developers must solicit customer feedback and evaluate the prototype based on that feedback. Developers' final step will be to work to improve the prototype based on users' wishes. Proper use of this methodology will result in better communication, less risk, user satisfaction, education, innovation, lower cycle times, a reduced number of defects and a flexible system.
Computerworld. July 4, 1988, Vol. 22 Issue 27, p39, 2 p.
Productivity, Software Packages, Design, Task Analysis, Systems Analysis, Software Engineering, Industrial productivity, and Software -- Design and construction
Providing functions users really need and making those functions easy to use are the keys to increasing end-user productivity. Providing useless functions or functions that end users find difficult can penalize system resources and productivity. First-hand knowledge of how users work and understanding their mental models of the tasks involved is required to create useful and usable software. Task analysis involves controlled observations of potential system users performing their regular work. The systems approach looks at how computer systems fit into an organization. Trade-offs between personnel selection, training, tasks, or procedures design and software design can then be made. Standardized user interfaces, prototyping, usability objectives, and testing are some other ways to improve end-user productivity.
Computerworld. July 13, 1987, Vol. 21 Issue 28, p23, 2 p.
Product Development, Design, New Technique, Product Life Cycle, Prototype, Marketing Strategy, Partnership, Manufactures, and Software Modification
Companies that constantly work on improving their products, such as Hewlett-Packard, will gain market acceptance. Unfortunately, iterative prototyping is a product-design technique that is catching on. Prototypes ought to be confined to labs, but some vendors think it is a good idea to get a product out and fix it later. Some examples of 'fine-tuned' products are the following: the Commander program from Peter Norton Computing; the MS-Word 3.0 program from Microsoft; the Paradox program made by Ansa Software; and the Ventura Publisher desktop publishing program, by Xerox.