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Software Engineering Economics
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(7 customer reviews)
Software Engineering Economics is an invaluable guide to determining software costs, applying the fundamental concepts of microeconomics to software engineering, and utilizing economic analysis in software engineering decision making.
- Amazon Sales Rank: #1273365 in Books
- Published on: 1981-11-01
- Ingredients: Example Ingredients
- Original language: English
- Number of items: 1
- Dimensions: 9.00" h x 1.60" w x 7.00" l, 2.82 pounds
- Binding: Paperback
- 767 pages
Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful.
One of the original pioneering works on software engineering.
By Joel R.
This is one of the original books on software engineering estimation. In this book, Boehm publishes the theory behind COCOMO (Constructive Cost Model). It has since been updated by COCOMO II, making this book obsolete.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful.
Still a classic
By Bas Vodde
Software Engineering Economics is one of the biggest classics in software engineering books. Still today (2004) much of the content is valid and the discussions are very useful. When reading this book you should realize that it's from 1981 and that much has changed since then.
Personally I especially likes the Part III and Part IV which were about the factors changing the software estimate and the reasons why. The last chapter of the book is something everyone should read who is working in quality/process management and is trying to improve productivity of a large project.
Still a classic and worth reading!
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful.
A classic "must read" - but be aware of its limitations
"Software Engineering Economics" is *the* book to be considered for anybody wishing to seriously enter the world of software cost estimation - only if it were because of the extremely great influence this book has had on this very peculiar aspect of software engineering. In this aspect, Barry Boehm is undoubtly the master.
HOWEVER, it must be kept in mind that the book itself is somewhat outdated - COCOMO 81, as defined by Barry Boehm, has been overtaken by new technologies and in particular by the surge in PCs & the Internet. The basic model is still valid - I still use it myself - provided you are aware what the background in computing was when it was written, and you carefully assign the adjustment factors.
Barry Boehm himself recognizes that COCOMO 81 is no longer valid - hence his collaboration with COCOMO II, which has addressed many of the problems that affected the old COCOMO 81 (e.g., it was mainly thought for development of software on expensive mainframes, and development tools have greatly evolved since that time). Still, I insist, if you are careful when making your estimations, the model and the techniques presented in this book are very useful and could be applied even on more modern projects.
My second HOWEVER is related to use the model presented in this book for Software Maintenance purposes. Though the book has a chapter on this issue, by opinion is a radical NO-No on this particular issue. COCOMO 81 (as presented in this book) and COCOMO II are adequate for software development purposes. I totally disagree that they are adequate for software Maintenance purposes (though COCOMO II is at least not so very bad). Apart from the fact that it ignores things such as regression testing, or the number of releases to be made during such maintenance, it also ignores the fact that software "degrades" during such maintenance - subsequent modifications introduce more and more stress on the original design, until at a certain moment the software requires a great "overhaul" in order to solve a lot of patchwork that has accumulated over the years. Hence the typical case of having to redesign a complete new software system because maintenance of the old system becomes too expensive.
In any case, if aware of such limitations, I can highly recommend it.