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Software Requirements 3 (Developer Best Practices) [Paperback]

Karl E Wiegers , Joy Beatty
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 27.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

29 Aug 2013 0735679665 978-0735679665 3

Now in its third edition, this classic guide to software requirements engineering has been fully updated with new topics, examples, and guidance. Two leaders in the requirements community have teamed up to deliver a contemporary set of practices covering the full range of requirements development and management activities on software projects.

  • Describes practical, effective, field-tested techniques for managing the requirements engineering process from end to end.
  • Provides examples demonstrating how requirements "good practices" can lead to fewer change requests, higher customer satisfaction, and lower development costs.
  • Fully updated with contemporary examples and many new practices and techniques.
  • Describes how to apply effective requirements practices to agile projects and numerous other special project situations.
  • Targeted to business analysts, developers, project managers, and other software project stakeholders who have a general understanding of the software development process.
  • Shares the insights gleaned from the authors’ extensive experience delivering hundreds of software-requirements training courses, presentations, and webinars.

New chapters are included on specifying data requirements, writing high-quality functional requirements, and requirements reuse. Considerable depth has been added on business requirements, elicitation techniques, and nonfunctional requirements. In addition, new chapters recommend effective requirements practices for various special project situations, including enhancement and replacement, packaged solutions, outsourced, business process automation, analytics and reporting, and embedded and other real-time systems projects.


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Product details

  • Paperback: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Microsoft Press; 3 edition (29 Aug 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0735679665
  • ISBN-13: 978-0735679665
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 18.8 x 3.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 140,835 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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About the Author

Karl E. Wiegers is Principal Consultant with Process Impact, a software process consulting and education company based in Portland, Oregon. Previously, he spent 18 years at Eastman Kodak Company, where he held positions as a photographic research scientist, software developer, software manager, and software process and quality improvement leader. He led process improvement activities for small teams, for a division of 500 software engineers building Kodak's digital imaging products, and for the Kodak Internet development group. As a consultant and trainer, Karl has worked with more than 100 companies in many different industry sectors and government agencies at all levels on requirements engineering, software peer reviews, process improvement, and project management. Karl received a PhD in organic chemistry from the University of Illinois. He has served on the Editorial Board for IEEE Software magazine and as a Contributing Editor for Software Development magazine.

Karl is the author of numerous books, including a memoir of life lessons titled "Pearls from Sand: How Small Encounters Lead to Powerful Lessons." He has written nearly 200 articles on many aspects of software development and management, chemistry, and military history. He is a frequent speaker at software conferences, public seminars, and professional society meetings. Karl's websites include www.processimpact.com, www.karlwiegers.com, and www.pearlsfromsand.com.

Joy Beatty, a leader in the software requirements community, has trained thousands of business analysts and helped major organizations build business-analysis centers of excellence. She is coauthor of Visual Models for Software Requirements.


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enlarged and Improved 28 Feb 2014
Format:Paperback
This new edition, much enlarged (to over 600 pages) and extensively revised, improves on an already thorough and useful book. Karl Wiegers is an established author and well-known specialist in requirements engineering, while Joy Beatty is the vice president of research and development at Seilevel and an active innovator in the requirements world. Together they bring a depth of experience to readers of this book.

The book works hard to emphasize the need to get inside the mind of the "user". Since the last edition, ten years ago, a new role called 'business analyst' has become widespread in the commercial and financial worlds, covering requirements and other business-oriented software development aspects. Industry's understanding of the software life-cycle, too, has changed radically, from staking all on a single throw of the dice in a 'big bang' development to multiple short cycles in what used to be called 'extreme programming', now better called agile project management. The book therefore rethinks old questions like how to find the voice of the user, with modern ideas like the 'product champion' and identifying classes of user, perhaps creating user personas to ensure people share a lively idea of who they are creating each product for.

Older topics like requirements elicitation and writing 'excellent' requirements get whole chapters, alongside more specialized topics like writing data requirements that were often overlooked by general software engineering texts. Key topics for projects, like prototyping, prioritisation and validation are given full weight. The book noticeably and very properly strays into project management - isn't requirements work always a key management input?
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Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  30 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An invaluable reference guide for all roles involved in software development 23 Sep 2013
By TinaHeidenreich - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I became a business analyst in 2004 and a co-worker suggested that I read Karl Wieger's books, Software Requirements, 2nd Edition and More About Software Requirements Thorny Issues and Practical Advice. That was the BEST professional advice I've ever received. The books have been integral in helping me to understand the many different skill sets, techniques, and best practices required to do a great job as an analyst.

So when I heard that Karl and Joy were co-writing the 3rd Edition of Software Requirements I was elated! The information provided in the new book is current, easy to understand, and so very relevant. Real-life examples and humor have been weaved throughout the book which makes it a very interesting read.

I recommend this book as an essential reference guide for anyone involved in software development, not just analysts. All roles should know about business analysis as it relates to system design and software development. This will be a book that you will refer to time after time.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Required reading for project managers, but don't forget the coffee 3 April 2014
By Ivy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
There are a great many friendlier, funnier, more engaging software requirements books on the market. There are very few books as comprehensive and concise as this one. Yes, concise. I know it's huge. It just covers that much information.

It provides an analysis of stakeholders and functional vs nonfunctional requirements that was surprisingly informative. We throw those terms around all the time, but rarely consider a formal definition. This book looks at a variety of options, and the one you choose will guide your thinking throughout requirements analysis and harvsting.

It covers everything you need to establish your requirements for the waterfall method, though it features substantial information on agile. If you are new to agile, and need ideas on how to gather the backlog, or if you've been using a while but don't feel the backlog is as complete as it should be, grab this book and a notepad. It covers a host of sources that are easy to overlook

It is very, very dry reading, which is the only reason it is four stars and not five. I found it hard to stay focused once in a while, and needed a caffeine boost to keep going. There is an attempt in the beginning to be humorous, but that is quickly lost. It is a little poorly organized. The topic sentence does not always guide the reader to the topic under discussion. You'll need to reset your focus a few times during the book, but it's worth it. The first two editions are often considered required reading for project managers, and the third lives up to that august reputation.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great reference guide with valuable nudges and insights to advance your craft! 7 Jan 2014
By Yaaqub Mohamed (Yamo) - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
I have been an avid reader and fan of Karl’s software development related books ever since my university days and now as a lead practitioner and trainer, I continue to find more value in his work. I had the honor of interviewing both Karl and Joy to learn about some behind-the-scenes information on how this new edition was updated. I was pleased to learn about their due diligence to ensure they’ve left no stone unturned to bring forward the latest and greatest in software requirements engineering.

The organization of the book, the emphasis on the role of a business analyst, and an in-depth requirements discovery and development roadmap are some of the key strengths of this edition. The first part sets the context and introduces a few best practices for requirements engineering. This is essential, and in my view applicable to all roles involved in software development.

Part II of the book covers the requirements development process, best practices in-depth for both waterfall and agile projects. As you read through this section, you will realize that the best practices are truly methodology agnostic, and imperative regardless of the business analysis approach.

One of the big challenges of a requirements practitioner is how to tailor the requirements discovery and development process for different projects, and Part III of the book precisely addresses this facet. This was something that always wished that a book would contain as I continue to work on different kinds of projects as a lead business analysis practitioner.

I was also pleased to see an entire section of the book devoted to requirements management aspect (Part IV). There is succinct and usable information that covers processes, best practices and tools that are invaluable for effective requirements management.

The last part looks at the requirements process improvement that can be useful for Requirements CoEs (Center of Excellence) or practice groups within organizations.

With comprehensive coverage of the requirements development processes, best practices and tools, this is a must-have book in your reference library; to both upgrade your knowledge and also advance your craft as a business analysis or requirements engineering practitioner.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Gold Standard got even better! 18 Dec 2013
By Joyce Statz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Over the years, when a novice business analyst (or someone with experience handling requirements) has asked me for a good reference, I’ve sent them to Karl Wiegers’ books. This third edition of Software Requirements is the gold standard I’ll now be recommending. Karl and Joy have done an excellent job of enriching the already-great material from the prior version, giving readers an understanding of why solid requirements are needed and illustrating practical techniques for developing and managing requirements. In addition to commonplace stories illustrating the concepts, they provide clear and useful examples of all the techniques. Practical, complete examples are essential to understanding methods an analyst hasn’t used before; like many of the subject matter experts we encounter, we “know it when we see it!”

The book is written in a flow that helps an analyst see what needs to be done from the point when an idea is first considered, to when it becomes the subject of a project, all the way through the project completion. Not all techniques work well with all types of projects, though, so the book includes sections describing adaptations of the material discussed and the specific needs of particular types of projects. They cover agile, enhancement and replacement, packaged solution, outsourced, business process automation, business analytics, and embedded and real-time projects.

While it’s a healthy-sized tome at more than 600 pages, the book is well organized and specific topics are easy to access individually. Most business analysts would benefit from reading it cover to cover, though, at least once!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Requirements Book With Needed Updates 27 Feb 2014
By Philip R. Heath - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The 3rd Edition of Software Requirements provides some significant updates that have been needed for a long time. I really like the way that the authors added Section III to cover items not in prior versions of the book. The single chapter on requirements for agile projects is brief, but it is meant as more of a launching point to other material in the book rather than a comprehensive guide. Other core chapters now include additional material where agile topics are relevant.

Software Requirements is well written with sufficient detail yet without being verbose. While it is a great reference for business analysts who work on a variety of types of projects, it is broadly applicable to people in other roles such as testers, developers, and architects. BAs are likely to read it cover to cover while others will use it more as a reference. I definitely recommend it to those in IT looking to improve their knowledge of the overall software requirements process.
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