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Software quality

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Sean Gallagher

This Q&A is part of a biweekly series of posts highlighting common questions encountered by technophiles and answered by users at Stack Exchange, a free, community-powered network of 80+ Q&A sites.

Robert Harvey asks:

My team and I are rebuilding a site we developed around ten years ago, and we want to do it in Agile. After I've spent a lot of time reading (probably not enough), I am having trouble with the question of how to divide work between developers.

I'll be more specific and say that the site is divided into separate modules which don't have much integration between them. What is the best/most accepted way to divide the work between the developers?

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Experienced tool developer Cyril Marlin outlines a method used to build an automated testing system for Wizarbox's SoBlonde, a Wii adventure game -- which reduced bugs, increased polish, and is flexible enough to be adapted to other genres.

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First time accepted submitter osman84 writes "I've been developing web/mobile apps for some time, and have managed to build up some decent experience about usability. However, as I'm growing a team of developers now, I've noticed that most of the young ones have a very poor sense of usability. Unfortunately, since I was never really taught usability as science, I'm having trouble teaching them to develop usable apps. Are there any good books that make a good read for general usability guidelines for web/mobile apps? I have a couple from my college days, but I'd like something more recent, written in the era of mobile apps, etc."

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LLBMC: The Low-Level Bounded Model Checker

Google Tech Talk (more info below) February 22, 2011 Presented by Carsten Sinz, Stephan Falke, & Florian Merz, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany. ABSTRACT Producing reliable and secure software is time consuming and cost intensive, and still many software systems suffer from security vulnerabilities or show unintended, faulty behavior. Testing is currently the predominant method to ascertain software quality, but over the last years formal methods like abstract interpretation or model checking made huge progress and became applicable to real-world software systems. Their promise is to reach a much higher level of software quality with less effort. In this talk we present a recent method for systematic bug finding in C programs called Bounded Model Checking (BMC) that works fully automatic and achieves a high level of precision. We present our implementation, LLBMC, which---in contrast to other tools---doesn't work on the source code level, but employs a compiler intermediate representation (LLVM IR) as a starting point. It is thus easily adaptable to support verification of other programming languages such as C++ or ObjC. LLBMC also uses a highly precise (untyped) memory model, which allows to reason about heap and stack data accesses. Moreover, we show how LLBMC can be integrated into the software development process using a technique called Abstract Testing.
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GTAC 2010: Lessons Learned from Testability Failures

Google Test Automation Conference 2010 October 28-29, 2010 "Lessons Learned from Testability Failures" Presented by Esteban Manchado Velázquez, Opera Software ASA. Often, QA staff focus on the testing itself. However, ensuring a good level of testability is crucial for project quality. For the sake of discussion, we can consider a project ""testable"" if its code is easy to unit test, it is easy to deploy multiple times reliably, and it has good introspection capabilities. When the testability level of a project is not monitored, it can end up becoming a burden for the team. These testability problems usually add up in small steps, making them hard to detect if we do not make the effort to look for them. Some examples of testability problems are poor communication about expected behavior, high thresholds for making tests, and low traceability of bugs. These problems make not only testing, but also implementation, harder. It follows that testability is something that teams must devote a considerable amount of time and energy to. First, testability allows a project to grow to several teams. Second, by facilitating testing it enables more and better tests, which results in higher quality. Finally, many developers do not realise its importance and impact, thus it is not something that will typically be addressed unless someone focuses on it. Esteban Manchado Velázquez has been working on software development for around 10 years and is currently Quality Assurance Engineer and <b>...</b>
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