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Software Engineering Resources

Quality & Quality Assurance
It's not enough to talk the talk by saying that software quality is important, you have to (1) explicitly define what is meant when you say 'software quality', (2) create a set of activities that will help ensure that every software engineering work product exhibits high quality, (3) perform quality assurance activities on every software project, (4) use metrics to develop strategies for improving your software process, and as a consequence, improving the quality of the end product. The following topic categories are presented: Just Released!
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Quality Resources

The Software Quality Page
A wide array of resources on software quality.

Quality Resources - 1
A comprehensive guide to on-line quality resources.

Quality Resources - 2
A useful set of resources that address management and quality issues.

Quality Resources - 3
Good source for software quality resources.

Quality Resources - 4
Addresses process, organizations, publications, conferences and other info sources.

Quality Resources - 5
An excellent hotlist of quality resources. Recommended.

Quality Resources - 6
Links to useful resources prepared by the Software Quality institute at the Univ. of Texas.

Quality Concepts

Software Quality
A reasonably complete discussion of software quality at Wikipedia.

Concepts For Software QA Engineer
A brief tutorial on software quality.

Software Quality Concepts
A poster-like collection of quality aphorisms, brief and to the point.

Basic Principles and Concepts for Achieving Quality
A downloadable, SEI paper extends the basic DoD software quality framework.

Papers on the Law of Software Quality
A variety of papers on software quality.

Software Quality Checklists
Prepared by the Goddard Space Flight Center and downloadable.

Software Quality Professional
An ASQ webzine with an excellent tutorial (left column) on software quality.

Software Quality Measurement Demystified
A discussion of the software quality index.

The Software Quality Profile
A paper by Watts Humphrey.

pdf: Software quality: concepts and evidences
A brief paper on the conceptualization of quality.

pdf: Requirements Peer Review Checklist
"The Requirements Peer Review Checklist defines the criteria to be used during a peer review of a software requirements specification."

Software Quality Assurance

• Resources

QA/Testing Resource Center
A wide array of resources, checklists, and pointers. Recommended.

QA Institute
Quality related information. Membership required.

Society for Software Quality (SSQ)
Dedicated to quality issues, this website presents recent news and pointers to useful information.

Total Quality Management Information and Resources
Continuous process improvement and TQM software, tutorials, and links can be found at this site, sponsored by the Industrial Engineering department at Clemson University.

Software Quality Assurance Links - I
A brief list of SQA resources with an emphasis on testing.

Software Quality Assurance Links-II
A fairly comprehensive collection of links.

Tantara Resources
Pointers to QA and process improvement resources. Recommended.

The Software Quality Page
A comprehensive collection of links to quality-related resources and standards. Recommended.

Software QA and Testing Resource Center
FAQs and links to a variety of resources.

Software Quality Articles
A collection of articles at the Software Development Quality Assurance Zone.

SQA Resources
A useful collection of SQA articles, news, pointers and discussion.

Software Quality Control (SQC) versus Software Quality Assurance (SQA)
The purpose of this article is to define the term Software Quality Control, SQC, in relation to Software Quality Assurance, SQA.

How to build a successful QA team
Focus here is on test team improvement.

Quality Gurus
A listing of important contributors to the quality movement over the past decades. Interesting reading for those who have real interest in quality issues.

Bug Tracking and Defect Tracking
Contains quality assurance/testing links with an emphasis on bug tracking and defect tracking tools, articles, sites, books, forums and related subjects. Recommended.

Statistical Process Control (SQC)

SQC and other quality related information is available through the American Society for Quality.

Control Charts as a tool in SQC
An in-depth discussion of control charts.

Quality and Statistical Process Control
Everything you need to know about the use of control charts, from Wikipedia.

Software Quality Assurance Training
15 articles that provide an indepth tutorial provided by Exforsys.

Video: Software Testing vs. Software Quality Assurance
A brief video discussion. (4:12)

Video: A System and Approach for Distributed, Continuous QA
A video by Adam Porter of Univ. Maryland. (1:16:17)

QM/SQA Process/Standards

ISO9000 / 9001 Resources and Information
Extensive links to ISO resources. Recommended.

ISO Standards
One of the major international standards organizations. All require a fee.

ISO Standards in Plain English
A useful summary of ISO standards by Praxiom.

Six Sigma - I
Everything six sigma - news, resources, papers. Recommended.

Six Sigma - II
Six Sigma related articles, columns, blogs, Q&A and other resources. Recommended.

IEEE Std 730(tm)-2002 IEEE Standard for Software Quality Assurance Plans
Available for a fee.

Software Assurance Guidebook and Standard
A NASA SQA standard. Downloadable.

pdf: A Thumbnail Sketch of the SQA Process
A US Navy summary sheet.

pdf: SQA Process
A in depth discussion of the US navy's version of the SQA process.

QA Framework: Operational Guidelines
"his document is one of the QA Framework family of documents of the Quality Assurance (QA) Activity, which includes the other existing or in-progress specifications: Introduction; Specification Guidelines; and, Test Guidelines." Produced by W3C.

pdf: Example Software Quality Assurance Plan
A complete SQA plan.

pdf: Software Quality and Standards.
An excellent indepth slide presentation. Recommended.

Technical Reviews (TRs)

• Basic Concepts

When Two Eyes Aren't Enough
An introductory article in Dr. Dobb's

The Review Spectrum
Concise description of the entire spectrum of review techniques, beginning with heuristic walkthroughs through formal inspections.

Reviews, Inspections, and Walkthroughs
A very concise description.

Reviews, Inspections, and Walkthroughs
A worthwhile slideshow that describes the differences and similarity among the techniques. Recommended.

Walkthroughs and Inspections
A useful summary of both techniques.

Software Inspections
An indepth discussion of the inspection process with useful metrics.

Structured Walkthroughs and Formal Technical Reviews
An indepth discussion by Jody Paul.

Seven Deadly Sins of Software Reviews
An article by Karl Wiegers.

"A Walk Through Mike's Code: A Case Study in Software Technical Reviews"
A scenario-based discussion of technical reviews.

• Guidelines and Handbooks

The NASA SATC Formal Inspection Guidebook
This guidebook, developed by NASA, provides in depth information for those who need guidance in conducting inspections. Recommended.

An Formal Technical Review Guide
Excellent outline of FTR process, tasks, checklists and other related information. Recommended.

Goodies for Software Peer Reviews
Forms, checklists, process descriptions, data spreadsheets.

Auditing Checklists
Pointers to auditing checklists for appraising software organizations can be obtained at:

Quality Audits
Useful information for software quality auditors can be obtained at this site.

Pair Programming and Reviews

From Peer Review to Pair Programming
How does each address software quality?

Why I Prefer Pair Programming to Code Reviews
Commentary on review alternatives.

Pair Programming vs. Code Reviews
A commentary at the blog Coding Horror.

Peer Reviews or Pair Programming, or Both?
Commentary and comments at StackOverflow.

Software Reliability & Safety

Overview of Software Reliability
A useful overview with FAQ produced by NASA Goddard.

Software Reliability
A detailed discussion of basic reliability concepts. Recommended.

The Silver Bullet: Why Software Is Bad and What We Can Do to Fix It
A collection of position pieces on software and reliability at Rebel Science News.

Reliability Resources
An extensive set of reliability pointers can be found at the WWW Sites of Reliability Interest. Recommended.

The Centre for Software Reliability (CSR)
Housed at City University (UK) the centre provides information on the following topics: Software dependability (particularly safety and reliability) modeling, Software fault tolerance, Software metrics and quality assurance, Fundamental issues for safety critical systems are also addressed.

Handbook of Reliability Engineering
A downloadable version of the complete handbook.

Software Reliability Assurance Handbook
An online book available for download.

Software Reliability: A Preliminary Handbook
A downloadable handbook developed by U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration

What Can Be Done about Software Reliability?

Software Metrics and Reliability
A detailed paper by the Software Assurance Technology Center (SATC) that addresses how quality metrics can be used to assess software reliability.

Edsger Dijkstra on Software Reliability
A position paper by an eminent computer scientist.

pdf: Software Reliability: Influences of Process vs. Technology
This paper will explore the specification for the system under development, the two competing development processes, the products and metrics captured during development, the analysis tools and testing techniques by the third party, and the results of a reliability and process analysis.

ppt: Software Reliability Methods
A collection of 534 ppt slides designed to accompany the book Software Reliability Methods by Doron Peled are available for download. Provide an worthwhile treatment o the subject.

Software Risk and Reliability Papers
A variety of worthwhile papers that address software risk and reliability can be downloaded.

Software Safety Papers
Worthwhile papers on software safety (and a detailed glossary) can be found at this site.

Safety Critical Systems
This site contains provides pointers and information on Safety-Critical Systems (software for systems in which human lives may be at risk). Resources include: Relevant newsgroups, Repositories and mailing lists, Courses, Clubs and organizations, On-line publications, Journals, Books, vendors and a searchable bibliography.

Software Supportability.org
This site discusses the techniques required to support software over its complete lifetime. "This implies satisfying any necessary needs or requirements, but also the provision of equipment, support infrastructure, additional software, facilities, manpower, or any other resource required to maintain the software operational and capable of satisfying its function."

Poka Yoke

Poka-yoke definition
Brief coverage at Wikipedia.

Poka Yoke Resources - I
Many links to useful resources.

Poka-Yoke Resources - II
A useful set of Poka-Yoke resources (including a tutorial) can be found at this site.

Poka Yoke (Mistake Proofing)
A useful collection of articles including a brief tutorial and pointers to many resources.. Recommended.

John Grout's Mistake-Proofing Center
Useful articles and resources.

Poka Yoke or Mistake Proofing: Overview
Answers to basic questions.

Using Poka-Yoke Techniques for Early Defect Detection
Harry Robinson's paper can be found here.

Poke Yoke Tutorial and Resources
A brief tutorial along with links to other resources.

Everyday Examples of Poke Yoke
45 examples of the use of Poke Yoke.

Error Proofing and Poka Yoke Techniques
An indepth discussion.

Video: Understanding: Poka Yoke and Chaku Chaku
A brief video on the subject.

Video: Poka Yoke: Mistake Proofing
A trailer for a complete video at http://www.sme.org/metv.

QM & SQA Tutorials, Articles, and Papers

Papers on the Law of Software Quality
A collection of worthwhile papers by Cem Kaner.

Quality Characteristics
Discusses the many dimension of quality and the software process.

A Comparison of Deming, Juran, and Crosby
A table that compares the philosophy each of these quality gurus (and others)

HCi Journal
A large collection of quality related papers.

Most Software Stinks!
A provocative article that is well-worth reading. Identifies general principles for achieving "aesthetic software."

Quality Cost Analysis
A detailed discussion of the costs and benefits associated with software quality. Recommended.

QM/SQA Methods & Tools

Quality Tools
A useful collection of small quality tools.

Testing Tools Suppliers
A list of testing tools vendors.


Basic quality concepts are considering in the following titles:

Software Quality Assurance
Software Quality: Concepts And Practice
A Practical Approach to Software Quality

A number of books provide excellent management-level presentations on the benefits of formal quality assurance programs for computer software:

Software Excellence: A Total Quality Management Guide
Practical Guide to Software Quality Management,
second edition
Fundamental Concepts for the Software Quality Engineer

The following books do not focus on software, but are must reading for senior managers with software development responsibility.

Out of the Crisis
Juran on Quality by Design
Quality is Free
Quality is Still Free

Everyday Heroes of the Quality Movement humanizes quality issues by telling the story of the players in the quality process
Metrics and Models in Software Quality Engineering presents a quantitative view of software quality.
Software Quality: State of the Art in Management, Testing, and Tools presents trends in SQA with an emphasis on testing.
Achieving Software Quality through Teamwork emphasizes the team-oriented aspects of software quality.

Detailed treatments of SQA can be found in:

Continuous Integration: Improving Software Quality and Reducing Risk
Software Quality Engineering
Software Engineering Quality Practices
Software Quality Assurance: Principles And Practice
Software Quality Assurance: From Theory to Implementation

Agile Software Development Quality Assurance presents quality assurance in the context of the agile process

The ISO 9001:2000 quality standard is discussed in many books:

ISO 9001:2000 Explained,
second edition
ISO 9001:2000 for Small Business
Comparing ISO 9000, Malcolm Baldrige, and the SEI CMM for Software

An ISO 9000 Approach to Building Quality Software
discusses the ISO standard as it applies to software.

Books that describe Six Sigma, a statistical quality management technique that leads to products that have very low defect rates focus on industrial progress, but have applicability to SQA as well:

Lean Six Sigma
The Six Sigma Way Fieldbook
The Six Sigma Handbook

Dozens of books have been written about software quality issues in recent years. The following is a small sampling of useful sources:

Software Quality Control, Error Analysis and Testing
Fundamental Concepts for the Software Quality Engineer
Customer Oriented Software Quality Assurance
An Introduction to Software Quality Assurance and its Implementation
Inroads to Software Quality: “How to” Guide and Toolkit
Software Quality and Testing In Internet Times
Managing Software Quality
A Practical Approach to Software Quality
Software Quality: State of the Art in Management, Testing and Tools
Software Rx: Secrets of Engineering Quality Software

Technical reviews are one of the most important SQA mechanisms. Among the many books on the subject are:

High Quality, Low Cost Software Inspections
Peer Reviews in Software: A Practical Guide
Software Inspection
Handbook of Walkthroughs, Inspections and Technical Reviews

Pair Programming Illuminated
presents an in depth discussion of pair programming that includes the quality control (review) aspects of the activity.

Measurement is an important component of software quality engineering. The folowing books address important quality related metrics and models:

Software Metrics: The Discipline Of Software Quality
Metrics and Models in Software Quality Engineering
Managing software Quality: A Measurement Framework

Software reliability and safety are advanced topics that are consider in many books. Some of these offerings are:

Software Reliability Engineering: More Reliable Software, Faster Development and Testing
Contributions to Hardware and Software Reliability
Reliability, Quality and Safety of Software-Intensive Systems
Handbook of Software Reliability Engineering
System Software Reliability

Among the books that consider software safety are:

Software Safety and Reliability
Safety-Critical Computer Systems
Safeware: System Safety And Computers

Definitions for Hardware and Software Safety Engineers
offers a complete compendium of important concepts and terms for reliability and safety
Testing Safety-Related Software provides specialized guidance for testing safety critical systems.
Software Assessment: Reliability Safety and Testability discusses useful models for assessing reliability and safety.

The poka-yoke technique for mistake-proofing software is discussed in the following books:

Zero Quality Control: Source Inspection and the Poka-yoke System
The Shingo Production Management System
Poka-Yoke: Improving Product Quality by Preventing Defects

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