Software Engineering Process
Software engineering deals with the development and usage of a software system with particular criteria. It is a structure imposed on the development of a software product. There are many models available for such processes and each process describes its own approaches to a variety of tasks/ activities that occur during the process. Software engineering processes are composed with many activities, including feasibility study, requirement gathering and analysis, Software design, Implementation, Testing, Documentation, Training & support and Maintenance.
Software design and development
Software design is the customer facing part of the software. The person who designs the software must know how to put the customer requirements together and creates the principles of design. Software design involves problem solving and planning for a software solution. The software design is made in the form of data flow diagrams, entity relationship diagrams and flow charts. These diagrams depicts the flow of information from one module to the another module of the software.
Software development comprises programming using any programming language as a front end, documenting, testing and bug fixing involved in building and maintaining software applications. The software developers/ programmers build the modules based on the design principles and make the software product run effectively.
It is a conventional process where the developers follow the activities of software engineering process in order starting from the initial step to the final step. Here, the process flows downwards through the various phases of software development, just like a waterfall. The basic idea behind the waterfall model is that you can move on to next phase only when the previous phase is successfully completed. This approach suits well only for simple projects. The major drawback of this model is that it doesnâ€™t provide the feature of backtracking. If there exists any fault in the previous phase, you cannot move backward.
Iterative processes and agile methodology
Iterative development makes use of a cyclic approach. It eliminates the limitation of the waterfall model and support the backtracking feature. It helps to uncover the important issues at an early stage before the faulty assumptions lead to a disaster. These processes are preferred by commercial developers as it allows at most possibilities of attaining the design goals of a customer.
Agile methodology is built on the basis of iterative development. The feedback is obtained by regular tests and releases of the software. This process is more effective than the older methodologies. It uses very less time to construct more functional, high quality software.
Effective collaboration between design and developer teams
Designers are completely dependent on developers in order to give life to their designs. They require a developer to interpret their design ideas in code that can be used by the users. To accomplish this, designers should communicate their ideas to developers through some documentation. When development commences, some unforeseen changes have to be made that are inevitable for the application. This will be generally done with the help of emergency meetings and patchwork documentation will be created. Still, the application will resemble the designerâ€™s goal at the end of the development process.
When the communication gap between design and development teams go wider, designs will go misinterpreted and lost. It is important to close the gap between these teams. If all designers understand coding and all developers understand designing, there would not be any gap. It is quite impossible at real-time. However, an effective communication will fill the gap for sure.
Designers should have the fundamental knowledge about the platform they are working for. Also, knowing the easy and hard things to perform from a developerâ€™s perspective will be helpful. Thus, designers can avoid developing resending the ideas of them for being unfeasible. On the whole, design and developer teams should have a good collaboration to deliver the best results to the users.