The longevity of software largely depends on the use of software engineering methods. Typically, most software projects usually follow four (4) patterns;
1. Software Specification: This entails the definition of the software requirements as well as the identified constraints.
2. Software Development: This is the stage where the software product is developed based on the identified specification.
3. Software Validation: The software validation stage is where the developed software is checked against the initial requirements. The goal of this is to ensure that the software meets the needs of the end user.
4. Software Evolution: Software evolution is the concept that a given software must be developed in a manner that is flexible and easy to modify to reflect changing business rules, or market requirements.
Having highlighted the software engineering methods above, it is easy to see why it is cheaper to use software engineering methods and techniques when developing software systems. A good software must follow a software engineering method or technique.
The software engineering methods and techniques for software systems enforce control and accountability in software development.
Without software engineering methods and techniques, developers will tend to build software without any well-defined plan. The cost is increased in this case because they tend to spend more time on development and consequently testing as well. With development cost accounting for about 60% of the entire software cost, and 40% for testing costs, it is clear that the decision to ignore software engineering methods and techniques can cost a lot more in the long run.
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