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More About Software Requirements: Thorny Issues and Practical Advice (Best Practices) [Paperback]

Karl E Wiegers
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

15 Nov 2010 0735622671 978-0735622678 1

No matter how much instruction you’ve had on managing software requirements, there’s no substitute for experience. Too often, lessons about requirements engineering processes lack the no-nonsense guidance that supports real-world solutions. Complementing the best practices presented in his book, Software Requirements, Second Edition, requirements engineering authority Karl Wiegers tackles even more of the real issues head-on in this book.



With straightforward, professional advice and practical solutions based on actual project experiences, this book answers many of the tough questions raised by industry professionals. From strategies for estimating and working with customers to the nuts and bolts of documenting requirements, this essential companion gives developers, analysts, and managers the cosmic truths that apply to virtually every software development project.



Discover how to:



  • Make the business case for investing in better requirements practices
  • Generate estimates using three specific techniques
  • Conduct inquiries to elicit meaningful business and user requirements
  • Clearly document project scope
  • Implement use cases, scenarios, and user stories effectively
  • Improve inspections and peer reviews
  • Write requirements that avoid ambiguity

Frequently Bought Together

More About Software Requirements: Thorny Issues and Practical Advice (Best Practices) + Software Requirements 3 (Developer Best Practices) + Visual Models for Software Requirements (Best Practices (Microsoft))
Price For All Three: £66.25

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Microsoft Press; 1 edition (15 Nov 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0735622671
  • ISBN-13: 978-0735622678
  • Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 18.8 x 1.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 385,197 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

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Product Description

About the Author

Karl E. Wiegers is a leading speaker, author, and consultant on requirements engineering, project management, and process improvement. As Principal Consultant with Process Impact, he conducts training seminars for corporate and government clients worldwide. Karl has twice won the Software Development Productivity Award, which honors excellence in productivity-enhancing products and books.


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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 4 April 2006
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
At last some science (and pragmatism) to assist with writing requirements documents! I found this book particularly useful in improving my approach to analysing customer needs - the chapter on estimating based on requirements provides some very practical tips. Here's a quote that gives an idea of the author's viewpoint:
"Note that I'm not suggesting you create more requirements documentation.... focusing on the appropriate contents like this can actually lead to shorter documents"
If you find yourself defining software project requirements, I reckon this book will help.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 4 April 2006
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
At last some science (and pragmatism) to assist with writing requirements documents! I found this book particularly useful in improving my approach to analysing customer needs - the chapter on estimating based on requirements provides some very practical tips. Here's a quote that gives an idea of the author's viewpoint:
"Note that I'm not suggesting you create more requirements documentation.... focusing on the appropriate contents like this can actually lead to shorter documents"
If you find yourself defining software project requirements, I reckon this book will help.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  18 reviews
71 of 74 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It depends... 30 Jan 2006
By Earl Beede - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
It was with high expectation that I picked up Karl Wiegers latest book on requirements. I had read the previous book, Software Requirements 2nd edition, and liked it. However, one of the people quoted on the back of the book had told me that Karl had rethought the role of use cases. Well, I wanted to see that. Also there was this whole subtitle of "Practical Advice". I wanted some of that too.

You see, I teach a requirements seminar and I almost always get asked the "Thorny Issues" Karl lists: How long does requirements take? How much detail is appropriate? What does a good requirement look like? What should be in the specification? My favorite is, "What should marketing put in their document and what should development put in theirs?" My answer always started with, "It depends..." and I wanted better answers.

The answers I got from the book were things like, "There are no fixed answers to the question. Multiple variables contribute to this issue." Or "There is no simple formulaic approach to software specification." Yep, it depends. Well, at least I agree with him.

Lest I sound a bit harsh, there is a lot of Practical Advice in here. There is a good primer on estimating from requirements and acknowledging the cone of uncertainty, the importance of customer input - even on agile projects, the role of specifications, and the need for text and models for a good specification. It is just that for me, I like to think that I already gave that advice to my clients. In fact, there were several sections in the book were I wondered if he had attended my class! (He hasn't.) Perhaps that is why I like his books, I think on the same wavelength.

Oh, about Karl's rethinking of Use Cases. Well, it turns out that Use Cases are not functional requirements but containers of functional requirements. And there are other, sometimes more appropriate, ways to capture functional requirements. Also, functional requirements should be specified outside of the Use Case. However, Karl still really, really likes Use Cases. So, Karl has done not so much of a rethinking of Use Cases but a clearer statement about the multiple variables that go into capturing requirements.

So, should you buy this book? Well if you are ready to accept that requirements are hard, that there is no one best way, that there are some better ways but it depends on where you are and the problem you are trying to solve, then this book will work for you. It has enough to guide you in the right direction. You still will have questions but those need to be worked out in your environment and culture. For those who want a cookie cutter approach to requirements and no ambiguity, it depends...
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Right on target 13 Jun 2006
By Jean-Simon Larochelle - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book is a very good addition to any software library. Chapter 15 (Elements of Requirements style) contains some really good and practical advise and is a perfect example of what makes this book great. It just seems to answer some questions that other books don't address and it does it in a very readable format.

It is not as complete as other books on requirements but it does not pretend to be complete. The title says "More about Software Requirements" and this is exactly what you get.

If you do not have another manual that covers the fundamental of software requirements you might want to get "Software Requirements 2nd Edition". Those two books together will give you a nice complete package.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wiegers is the best, as always :) 18 Feb 2007
By Yegor - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Karl Wiegers is the person I recommend all my employees to read. This book is even better than 'Software Requirements, 2nd Edition' by Karl. He gives practical advises together with theory and important references. This book could be used as a tutorial for requirements engineers. One of the best books in this subject area.
6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Establishing the Requirements for a Project 8 April 2006
By John Matlock - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
There are hundreds, if not thousands of books on programming that talk about programming languages, programming techniques, programming aids, testing your programming, and more. Yet there is very little written on telling these programmers just what they should be programming.

This book is the exception. It is on how to specify and then manage the software project. It discusses all of the components of developing a set of requirements that will accurately reflect the real needs of the agency that will use the software. It covers all of the new buzz words like 'extreme programming,' 'cases,' 'scenarios,' and so on. Some of these it accepts, some are not reported to be helpful.

The goal of this book is to give the person or group developing the requirements sufficient tools to produce the documents that can later be used to develop the software that everyone agrees is what is needed.
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book on Requirements! 9 July 2013
By CD music collector - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent book on Requirements that follows Karl Wieger's first book on Requirements which is also an excellent book! I highly recommend it!
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