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Technical Reports

USC-CSSE-2012-507

Barry Boehm, Supannika Koolmanojwong, Jo Ann Lane, and Richard Turner, "Principles for Successful Systems Engineering" (pdf)

This paper summarizes several iterations in developing a compact set of four key principles for successful systems engineering, which are 1) Stakeholder Value-Based System Definition and Evolution 2) Incremental Commitment and Accountability 3) Concurrent Multidiscipline System Definition and Development, and 4) Evidence-Based and Risk-based Decisionmaking. It provides a rational for the principles, including short example case studies of failed projects that did not apply the principles, and of successful projects that did. It will compare the principles with other sets of principles such as the Lean Systems Engineering and the Hitchins set of principles for successful systems and systems engineering.

Added April 15, 2013


USC-CSSE-2012-506

Dan Ingold, Barry Boehm, Supannika Koolmanojwong, Jo Ann Lane, "A Model for Estimating Agile Project Schedule Acceleration" (pdf)

Accelerating development schedules is increasingly important in a competitive world. Reduced time-to-market is a key response to competitive threats in the commercial sphere, and rapid response in deploying military systems may save lives in a geopolitical environment characterized by rapidly emerging and ever-changing physical threats. Agile/lean development methodologies show promise in providing the desired schedule acceleration, but it can be difficult for planners to determine the effects of these factors on schedule duration, and to make appropriate choices to optimize project performance. The Constructive Rapid Application Development Model (CORADMO) attempts to quantify the effects of key schedule drivers, and thus enable planners to estimate the relative schedule that will result from varying these parameters.

Added November 17, 2012


USC-CSSE-2012-505

Jo Ann Lane, "System of Systems Capability to Requirements" (pdf)

Given an existing set of interconnected, independent systems, often referred to as a system of systems (SoS), one of the key activities according to the United States Department of Defense Systems Engineering Guide for Systems of Systems is “translating SoS capability objectives into high-level SoS requirements”. Capability engineering starts with understanding the desired capability and identifying various options for achieving that capability, technically assessing the various alternatives, then further evaluating the most viable alternatives in terms of capability performance, cost, and schedule. This paper provides additional guidance for translating capability objectives into requirements; defines SoS engineering methods, processes, and tools that might support this activity; and illustrates how the methods, processes, and tools would be used and integrated to support SoS engineering using an example SoS.

Added July 16, 2012


USC-CSSE-2012-504

Pongtip Aroonvatanaporn, Thanida Hongsongkiat, and Barry Boehm, "Improving Software Development Tracking and Estimation Inside the Cone of Uncertainty" (pdf)

Software cost and schedule estimations are fundamental in software development projects as they determine the scopes and the resources required. With accurate estimations, the goals of project outcome can be assured within the available resources. However, developing accurate and realistic estimates require high level of experience, expertise, and historical data. Oftentimes, once the resources have been estimated, little is done to reduce the uncertainties in the estimations as the project progresses through its life cycle. To address this issue, we have developed the COTIPMO tool, an implementation of the COnstructive Team Improvement Process MOdel framework, to help automate the recalibration and estimation improvement processes. The tool allows software development teams to effectively track their development progress, assess the team's performance, and adjust the project estimates based on the assessment results. The COTIPMO tool has been used by 13 software engineering projects and the results are presented in this paper.

Added July 1, 2012


USC-CSSE-2012-503

Pongtip Aroonvatanaporn, Supannika Koolmanojwong, and Barry Boehm, "COTIPMO: A COnstructive Team Improvement Process MOdel" (accepted to ICSSP 2012 conference in Zürich, Switzerland) (pdf)

Team synchronization and stabilization are essential - especially for large software projects. However, often little is done to assess and reduce the uncertainties and knowledge gaps that exist within the project. As the project progresses through its life cycle, the team can gain more information about the project and team's capabilities. These necessary data can be obtained through performing assessments on the team and project. As these assessments procedures are often complex, discouraging, and difficult to analyze, an effective framework and tool support can greatly enhance the process. Hence, with improved assessment methods, software project teams can quickly gather the necessary data, determine the actions to improve performance, and result in an improved project outcome in the end. The COnstructive Team Improvement Process MOdel (COTIPMO) is a framework developed to effectively improve team synchronization and stabilization as well as project effort estimation and scoping by enabling software development teams to quickly track project progress, continuously assess team performance, and make adjustments to the project estimates as necessary.

Added July 1, 2012


USC-CSSE-2012-502

Nupul Kukreja, Sheetal Swaroop Payyavula, Barry Boehm and Srinivas Padmanabhuni, "Selecting the Most Appropriate Framework for Value Based Requirements Prioritization - A Case Study", In IEEE Requirements Engineering Conference 2012. Unpublished (submitted for publication) (pdf)

There are usually more requirements than feasible in a given schedule. Thus, it's imperative to be able to choose the most valuable ones for implementation to ensure the delivery of high value software system. There are myriad requirements prioritization frameworks and selecting the most appropriate one is a decision problem in its own right. In this paper we present our approach in selecting the most appropriate value based requirements prioritization framework as per the requirements of our stakeholders. Based on our analysis a single framework was selected, validated by requirements engineers and project managers and deployed for company-wide use by a major IT player in India.

Added April 12th, 2012


USC-CSSE-2012-501

Nupul Kukreja, Barry Boehm, "Process Implications of Social Networking-Based Requirements Negotiation Tools", In International Conference on System and Software Process (ICSSP) 2012. In Press. (pdf)

Avoiding a major source of system and software project failures by finding more non-technical-user friendly methods of system definition and evolution has been a significant challenge. Five generations of the WinWin negotiation framework have improved such capabilities, but even the latest WikiWinWin toolset has encountered problems with non-technical stakeholder usage. With the advent of social networking and popularity of Facebook and Gmail, we have developed a radically different way for collaborative requirements management and negotiations. The new avatar of the WinWin framework called 'Winbook' is based on the social networking paradigm, similar to Facebook and content organization using color coded labels, similar to Gmail. Initial usage results on 14 small projects involving non-technical stakeholders have shown profound implications on the way requirements are negotiated and used through the system and software definition and development processes. Winbook has also been adopted as part of a project to bridge requirements and architecting for a major US government organization.

Added April 12th, 2012


USC-CSSE-2012-500

Nupul Kukreja, Barry Boehm, "Winbook: A Social Networking Based Framework for Collaborative Requirements Elicitation and WinWin Negotiations (Nupul Kukreja, Barry Boehm) in ICSE SRC (Student Research Competition) 2012. In Press." (pdf)

Easy-to-use groupware for diverse stakeholder negotiation has been a continuing challenge. USC's fifth-generation wiki-based win-win negotiation support tool was not as successful in improving over the previous four generations as hoped - it encountered problems with non-technical stakeholder usage. The popularity of Facebook and Gmail ushered in a new era of widely-used social networking capabilities that I have been using to develop and experiment with a new way for collaborative requirements elicitation and management - marrying the way people collaborate on Facebook and organize their emails on Gmail to come up with a social networking-like platform to help achieve better usage of the WinWin negotiation framework [4]. Initial usage results on 14 small projects involving non-technical stakeholders have shown profound implications on the way requirements are negotiated and used, through the system and software definition and development processes. Subsequently, Winbook has also been adopted as a part of a project to bridge requirements and architecting for a major US government organization.

Added April 12th, 2012


Copyright 2012 The University of Southern California

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