Change is in the air here in Massachusetts. Winter is slowly but surely giving way to spring...or as we call it: mud season. I spent a little time during today's lunch break playing fetch with my Black Labrador Retriever, Molly. Her giant feet ensured that the yard has been properly trampled and muddied up. This is the time of year when we start to make our preparations for the warmer weather. High on our list is a seeding and fertilization regimen for the lawn to protect it from Molly.
Does the change in seasons prompt you to start planning, too? Here at developerWorks Rational we're deep in Innovate preparations. Have you registered yet? The early registration discount is expiring soon, don't miss it!
Interested in more IBM Rational news?
By: Paul L. Fechtelkotter, Global Business Segment Leader, Energy and Utilities, Rational software, IBM
How IBM addresses compliance and collaboration challenges in the nuclear energy industryBack up Rational software user data for quick disaster recovery
By: Pranab Agarwal, Advisory Staff Software Engineer, IBM
How to configure peer-to-peer replication with Rational Directory Server (Tivoli Variant)
Products: Rational Change, Rational DOORS, Rational SynergyAvoid manual configuration of applications under test with this Java utility
By: Amit Srivastava, Staff Software Engineer, IBM and Awanish Kumar Singh, Software Engineer, IBM
Configure applications programmatically in Rational Functional Tester for a client/server test environment
Product: Rational Functional TesterFeatured author
We are pleased to feature Contributing Author Ritesh Nigam
Ritesh Nigam is a senior software engineer with eight years of experience in software development. He has been working as a senior developer for IBM Rational Change for more than five years. He also has experience in Java, Java 2 Enterprise Edition (J2EE), Perl, and web technologies, such as Dojo toolkit, Ajax, web services, OSLC, and change and configuration management.
Visit Ritesh's developerWorks profile
Read all of Ritesh's developerWorks content
Learn about the Author achievement recognition program
IBM Rational Functional Tester is automated functional- and regression-testing software for QA teams concerned with the quality of their Java, web-based, Microsoft Visual Studio, Microsoft .NET, terminal-based, SAP, Siebel, and Web 2.0 applications.DownloadsEvents
I have seen protracted discussion on the subject of metrics and measurements in
software development, both at clients and “around the water cooler” at Rational
and IBM. By this I mean developing,
viewing and leveraging measurements that inform us how well a software
development team or organization is doing their job, and how they might do that
job better. All too often, I observe at
my clients that they are taking few or no measurements to inform them how
they’re doing, or how they might improve.
Many in our industry have taken to calling this situation as “operating
open loop”. Of course, this refers to an
objective feedback loop that informs the organization how they’re doing.
do you measure your effectiveness? How
do you improve? What follows is some
notes on doing so, particularly relating to quality … what works, what helps,
what doesn’t work, etc.
1. Software quality is difficult to measure precisely ... but
that's ok, we simply must do our best, and our best turns out to be good
enough. What is not good enough is not
measuring ... and that's what most of our clients do.
2. Organizational resistance to measurements (any measurements)
is often quite strong. If someone has
not been getting measured, and s/he's comfortable, measurements are usually
seen as a threat. The perception is that
all they can do is demonstrate that the person is not doing as well as
3. Also, of course, it's easy to misuse measurements and
thus generate undesired behaviors. It is
critical that the organization convey to the staff why the measurements
are being implemented. The goal of
measures must be to help the organization better understand their business and
their progress toward objectives.
4. Douglas Hubbard has at least two useful books on the topic of
measurement in general, both of which we've found useful:
How to Measure Anything,
which basically says you can measure
it, whatever it is, and
The Failure of Risk
Management, which includes the following
interesting and powerful assertion: Everybody, everywhere, is focusing on
the least valuable measurements at the expense of the most valuable
5. It can be difficult to decide on the definition of quality
that is most important to leverage under whatever circumstances you have. There are at least 6 (!!) definitions of
quality we see commonly used.
Areté - fundamental excellence (see wikipedia, first
few paragraphs (or more if you're interested):
requirements match real need (which doesn't necessarily mean that the
requirements, even though they're "right", are properly implemented)
requirements (e.g. performance) match real need (usually used in conjunction
with the previous bullet)
The requirements are
complete (match all the real
The requirements and/or
implementation are not gold plated (nothing extra beyond all real need)
We have fewer, or zero,
defects (defect is also difficult
to define! Does defect mean
"doesn't meet requirements"?
Does it mean "doesn't meet real need?" (not the same in general) If you fail to meet a requirement that turns
out to be gold plating, is that a defect?
All that ...) This is the
definition I see most often used.
6. Discussing what to measure is a good first step, and this note
stops there, for now, and does not discuss subsequent steps. Once you have decided what to measure, there
is still much more work to do, even if substantial automation (such as a tool
like Rational Team Concert or HP Quality Center) is already at your disposal
and/or already in use
7. Therefore, as you might expect, build a plan, and then
execute the plan, and then plan to replan, and repeat and be iterative (another
full topic: iteration). Just like
More to come ...
Big preparations going on both at developerWorks and here in Massachusetts. Many of our systems are going offline for a few days next week due to a large software upgrade. Because of this, our next set of new articles will publish on the 19th. Here in Massachusetts we're undergoing a bit of a shut-down as well as we batten down the hatches and prepare for the incoming blizzard. Current snow totals range from 24-30 inches falling between Friday morning and midday on Saturday. I will see you all on the other side.
Interested in more IBM Rational news?
By: Leigh Williamson, Distinguished Engineer, Software Group, IBM
This guide for enterprise teams working on mobile applications explains the IBM approach to mobile application development, which exploits existing information and transaction systems for maximum speed to market and reuse of services
Products: Rational Application Developer, Rational Functional Tester, Rational Method Composer, Rational Performance Tester, Rational Software Architect, Rational Quality Manager, Rational System Architect, Rational Developer for System z, Rational Test Workbench, Rational Test Virtualization Server, Rational Team Concert, Rational Asset Analyzer, COBOL
By: Kapil Gambhir, Senior Software Engineer, IBM
Overview of the feature introduced in Version 8.5 that automatically migrates Visio drawings to first-cut models
By: Victor A. Sosa Herrera, Software Engineer, IBM
Add deployment assembly support to IBM Rational Application Developer to deploy SCA applications to IBM WebSphere Application Server
Product: Rational Application Developer
By: Shivakumar Patil, Security Lead, IBM
An example of testing web-based applications and external endpoints, such as SOAP and REST web services
Product: Rational Focal Point
We are pleased to feature Contributing Author Murali Dhandapani
Murali Dhandapani is part of the Operations Software Engineering Service team at IBM Software Labs, in India. He is an IBM Certified IT Specialist in System Management and a technical lead for infrastructure deployment of IBM Rational® Jazz™ technology-based products. In addition to his articles for developerWorks, he has co-authored a couple of IBM Redbooks about the IBM PowerHA® SystemMirror for AIX, a high-availability cluster management solution. Murali is interested in learning, leveraging, and working with new technologies.
This week we are also highlighting the following items on our home page and product pages that you may find of interest.
Rational Focal Point, a market- and business-driven product and portfolio management tool for application portfolio management, delivery management, and product management, is now available for you to try in a sandbox environment on developerWorks:
IBM Rational Developer for System z gives System z developers tools for traditional mainframe development and for integrated, mixed workloads. An interactive, workstation-based environment lets you connect to a mainframe and develop mainframe-based applications in COBOL, PL/I, Assembler, C/C++, and Java code, as well as workstation-based applications in COBOL, PL/I, and Java code.
Recently, Cindy Krauss, Jon Sayles and I participated on an IBM Systems Magazine webcast.
We called it "10 things you’ll want to know about Rational development tools before you start that project". You can watch it at this link.
The webcast tried to take a quick dive into the most interesting and helpful aspects of Rational Developer for System z (RDz) and a few other related tools.
During the webcast, we got a ton of questions and we didn't have a chance to answer all of them. I've asked Cindy, Jon (and I) to answer the questions after the webcast and we're going to put them here for everyone to take advantage of.
There are plenty of questions, so I'll post a few of the questions and answers at a time. Hopefully we can continue the conversation in the comments to this blog.
Interested in more IBM Rational news?
By: Steve Arnold, Senior Technical Consultant, IBM and Jas Atwal, Technical Consultant, IBM
Save time and find traceability gaps by linking enterprise architecture elements in IBM Rational System Architect with model elements in IBM Rational Software Architect extension for Design Management.
Products: Rational Software Architect, Rational System Architect
By: Guru Prasad Ramesh, Staff Software Engineer, IBM
Use the Rational DOORS for ClearCase Interface to establish traceability between these two tools
Products: Rational DOORS, Rational ClearCase
By: Mark Roberts, Certified IT Specialist, IBM
A useful guide to the most common aspects of the command-line interface, including typical developer, integrator, and configuration manager activities
Product: Rational Team Concert
By: Robin Wood, Content Acquisition Editor for developerWorks Rational, IBM
A time-saving round-up of the 12 most popular Rational articles published by developerWorks in 2012.
By: Mike Cohn, Founder, Mountain Goat Software
Mike Cohn guides you through how agile and scrum teams progressively refine a project's requirements.
We are pleased to feature Contributing Author Monica Luke
Monica Luke lives in the Boston, Massachusetts area. With more than 20 years experience in software engineering, she joined IBM Rational software 10 years ago in the test organization. During her 17 years as a test automation engineer and architect, she has repeatedly tackled the tough problems of building test automation solutions through frameworks that last and build triggered test solutions for complete lights-out testing. Testing and test automation remain a passion, and that has led Monica to move into the product management organization, where she has the opportunity to tackle these tough problems in the testing tools. Using an outside-in scenario design approach, Monica is happily influencing the next wave of Rational testing tools.
Paul has more than 25 years experience in developing systems, software, and hardware in the embedded and real-time systems industry. He is an OMG Certified Systems Modeling Professional Model User, and a senior systems market manager for IBM Rational software and has worked with Rational software in various roles since 1995. Paul is a prolific author on developerWorks and has earned the Contributing Author badge.
We also highlighted the following items on our home page and product pages that you may find of interest.
IBM® Rational® Software Architect is an advanced and comprehensive application design, modeling and development tool for end-to-end software delivery. The latest version is updated with the latest in design and modeling technologies, comprehensive support for emerging technologies around BPMN2, SOA and Java™ Enterprise Edition 5, and delivers the best of breed tooling that integrates with IBM's application lifecycle management solutions. Evaluations available for Linux, Windows, Red Hat Linux, SUSE Linux, Ubuntu, and Mac OS.
Learn how design management contributes to collaborative lifecycle management for IT organizations.
Regular registration rates start March 16. Register now and save.
Enterprise architecture is part of the Technical Exchange track at Innovate 2013. Because the call for papers has been extended to January 21, you still have time to submit an abstract to be a speaker and get noticed by others in your profession.
Remember....speakers do get special benefits.
- One full conference pass ($1995 value)
- Description of your presentation and speaker details on the Innovate SmartSite Agenda Builder
- Personalized presentation techniques coaching from a speaker trainer, if desired
- Use of the exclusive Client Speaker VIP Lounge
Ideas for you to consider as you ask yourself, "What would I like to talk about?"
- Your and your organization's journey
- EA Frameworks
- Business transformation
- Application rationalization / management
- Innovative EA techniques and strategies
- Tips and Tricks
- Best Practices
- Anything you want to share We are open to your ideas. The possibilities are endless.
Even if you don't plan to submit a paper, then you can still join us in Orlando. Register NOW to get an Early Bird rate - available until March 15, 2013.
Sometimes I wish I had a crystal ball so I could see what you want to read on developerWorks. But I don’t, so I turned to what I do have: History. I went through all of the reports and identified the 12 most popular articles in 2012. I chose twelve articles because, well, it was 2012, although I don’t think I’ll use the same method in 2050. In this instance, history didn’t prove very helpful. Perhaps it’s because there are, on average 590,000 of you who visit our site monthly. Or because we published 139 articles, which gave you a wide variety to choose from.
So, given that I don’t have a crystal ball and history isn’t showing trends, I’m going to the source. You. What would you like to see published on the developerWorks Rational site this year? Be sure to post your requests in the comments section. While you’re thinking about that question, take a look at the top 12 articles published in 2012.
- Create editable sequence diagrams with Rational Software Architect
By Bala Subramanian Vetrivel, Technical Specialist, IBM
Sequence diagrams play a key role in documentation. These diagrams easily depict the flow, interaction among objects, and message communication. Bala Subramanaian Vetrivel describes how to generate sequence diagrams for Java projects by using IBM® Rational® Software Architect for WebSphere Software, Version 7.5.4. He also explains the limitations of sequence diagrams that cannot be edited, the need for generating editable sequence diagrams, and steps to generate editable diagrams.
- Document and automate processes with Rational Method Composer and Jazz: Part 4. Create new process assets (be sure to read parts 1-3 too)
By Ricardo Balduino, Senior Software Engineer, IBM
This series of articles about the importance of documenting methods focuses on integrating Rational® Method Composer with Rational Team Concert™, which is based on Jazz™ technology. Part 1 explained the value of an integrated approach, and the subsequent articles use sample scenarios to describe how organizations use these integrated tools. Part 2 described how a team used a process included in Rational Method Composer, and Part 3 covered how they extended the process description to accommodate new process needs and then automated that process in Rational Team Concert. In this article, Part 4, Ricardo Balduino describes how the team starts with and then adapts existing practices from Rational Method Composer and creates a new process template in Rational Team Concert to get the team started and to run the project.
- What's new in Rational Software Architect 8.5 and Design Manager 4 beta: Improved collaboration, reuse, technology support, and easier adoption
By Steve Arnold, Senior Technical Consultant, IBM
IBM Rational Software Architect Version 8.5 introduces technology support for Spring, Hibernate, Struts, and Java 7, and makes adoption easier by providing a Microsoft Visio import option. This new version also includes the Design Manager Version 4 beta, which introduces simplified team working and improves reuse. Steve Arnold describes these and other highlights of this release.
- Representing nonfunctional aspects using TOGAF ArchiMate
By Fabio Castiglioni, Senior IT Architect, IBM, and Francesco Pedullá, Executive Architect, IBM
The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF) and its modeling language, ArchiMate, are increasingly popular techniques for documenting and evolving the architecture of an enterprise. Several tools, including Rational® System Architect support them. However, ArchiMate lacks the elements needed to describe the nonfunctional aspects of the enterprise, thereby limiting the usefulness of the resulting enterprise architecture in environments, such as cloud, where service levels are primary business requirements. Fabrio Castiglioni and Francesco Pedullá show how to extend the ArchiMate metamodel to build a nonfunctional model extension that goes from business to technical architecture. They also provide a simple customization to download, so that you can use the new metamodel extension in Rational System Architect.
- Calculate your return on investment for software and systems
By Murray Cantor, Distinguished Engineer, IBM
The term "return on investment" (ROI) is frequently used to describe the benefit derived from investments in software and systems or other business investments. To better align software and systems investments, there are different kinds of ROI answers to different business questions: Have we received a good return on the investments to date? Should we continue to invest in the project? What will be the total ROI over the life of the software or system? Murray Cantor provides the different ROI calculations to answer these questions.
- Integrate Rational ALM applications with SAP Solution Manager: A unified approach to managing and testing SAP and non-SAP projects
By Bernd Eberhardt, Product Manager, IBM
Businesses with SAP environments that need to adapt to changing needs quickly will benefit from an open, extensible ALM (application lifecycle management) platform that is based on industry standards. With tools that scale existing processes, reduce costs, and use a quality-based approach, you will meet business objectives efficiently, too. Bernd Eberhardt explains how and why integrating SAP's Solution Manager with Rational ALM applications optimizes deployment for SAP and non-SAP projects.
- Reasons for resistance to enterprise architecture and ways to overcome it
By Jan K. Gravesen, Executive Industry Architect, IBM
Since the mid-1990s, enterprise architecture has been evolving as an independent design discipline in the area between strategy and architecture. Although interest has been growing in recent years, the discipline is still considered immature, and many enterprises remain ambivalent or skeptical. Jan Gravesen discusses the considerable value that enterprise architecture can bring and how it can be successfully implemented to overcome much of that organizational skepticism.
- Advantages and options of private cloud computing
By Sandra Sergi Santos, Software Engineering Specialist, IBM
When we think of computer resources in the cloud, we usually think of public clouds, such as the ones offered by Google or Amazon, with infrastructure or applications shared by millions of clients worldwide, through the Internet. Some organizations, because of their organizational cultures or for security or regulatory concerns, cannot move directly into public clouds, but they have the option of private clouds. Sandra Sergi Santos explains the advantages and ways to use them to optimize your investments, processes, and infrastructure.
- IBM PureSystems: A game changer in the development, deployment, and management of IT applications
By Steve Abrams, Distinguished Engineer and Chief Cloud Architect, IBM, and Timothy Hahn, Distinguished Engineer, Chief Architect for Enterprise Tools, IBM
IBM® PureSystems™ is the first offering in a brand new system category from IBM — a new class of systems known as "Expert Integrated Systems." The technology is designed to get IT organizations up and running in as little as four hours, cutting months off the time required to deploy new applications. PureSystems combines the flexibility of a general-purpose system, the elasticity of the cloud, and the simplicity of an appliance. This introduction by Steve Abrams and Timothy Hahn explains further and describes how application development tools and the Rational solution for Collaborative Lifecycle Management (CLM) complement PureSystems to provide a streamlined application development, test, and production environment.
- Continuous integration in agile development: How agile methods, continuous integration, and test-driven enhance design and development of complex systems
By Martin R. Bakal, Worldwide Offering Manager, Electronics Industry, IBM
Martin Bakal explores how agile development, continuous integration (CI), and test-driven development (TDD) techniques can be employed in embedded software development. When applied as part of an architecture-based approach, these combined practices provide both high quality and project flexibility.
- What's new in IBM Rational Rhapsody 8.0 and Rhapsody Design Manager 4.0: Introducing new requirements workflow optimized for systems engineers, guides for new users, kits for ISO 26262 and IEC 61508 safety-critical development
By Paul Urban, Senior Systems Market Manager, IBM Corporation
IBM® Rational® Rhapsody® 8.0 and Rational Rhapsody Design Manager 4.0 provide simplified design collaboration with new systems engineering workflow with a Jazz technology-based database repository that unifies requirements and design. Paul Urban also gives you highlights of other additions or enhancements: A single source of truth based on OSLC integration; reference workflow with certificate from the TÜV SÜD for development under ISO 26262 Road Vehicles Functional Safety and IEC 61508 Functional Safety standards; enhanced user experience and productivity with solution-focused guidance to assist new users; updates for UPDM 2.0, SysML 1.3, and AUTOSAR 4.0 and 3.2; improvements for usability and performance improving systems engineering workflows and agile embedded and real-time software development. These new versions also add many usability enhancements and improvements for systems engineering and safety-critical development.
- How early Integration testing enables agile development
By Monica Luke, Lifecycle Scenario Architect, IBM
It's hard to deliver on the agile principle of "done, done, done" for complex, heterogeneous systems. Monica Luke explains how service virtualization can improve team collaboration and align the independent test organization's focus on the same milestone as the development team.
It’s our first roll call of the year and this time we’re calling on Paul Urban. Paul has more than 25 years experience in developing systems, software, and hardware in the embedded and real-time systems industry. He is an OMG Certified Systems Modeling Professional Model User, and a senior systems market manager for IBM Rational software and has worked with Rational software in various roles since 1995. Paul is a prolific author on developerWorks and has earned the Contributing Author badge. Learn more from Paul at the Rational Rhapsody enlightenment webinar series
What books have influenced your ideas and thoughts the most?
Bruce Douglass's books on best practices on using modeling for the development of embedded systems, such as Doing Hard Time, have influenced my thoughts on effectively applying a model-driven approach to improve the development of embedded systems.
What communities, forums or user groups do you turn to for help or technical insight?
What magazines, newspapers and/or information products do you study?
SD Times, EE Times, Electronic Design, Medical Design Technology, Military and Aerospace Electronics
How do you handle defeat and/or failure?
If things do not work out as planned then I look at this as an experience to learn from. What good things occurred that need to be repeated and learn to avoid any mistakes in the future.
Which (future) standards are seen as important?
With increased focus on product quality and avoidance of product recalls, safety-critical standards such as DO-178C, ISO 26262, IEC 62304 or IEC 61508 will be important for the development of products where failure could result in injury.
To what extent is User Experience integrated with software development in practice?
First impressions are a critical aspect of any product, whether that is software, electronics or any product. With the proliferation of technology in our everyday lives there has come an expectation for an easy-to-use user experience. The Rhapsody development team strives to improve the user experience in every release. For IBM Rational Rhapsody v8.0, new Guide Me's were added to help new users perform tasks. User experience is a critical aspect of any software product.
How do you keep up with changes in the industry?
Usually from trade magazines, many mentioned earlier, or from social sites such as Linked In.
After hours Paul spends his time supporting his kids in their extracurricular activities (soccer, karate, dancing or cub scouts), and for the few moments he saves for himself he golfs. Paul was part of the 2011 IBM Golf League champion team. Paul’s latest article is Safety-related software development using a model-based testing workflow
. Think about this question as you read the article, and feel free to answer the question in the comments section:
Do you think the reference workflow described could fit into your existing safety related development process?
Nominations for IBM Champions are now open. Do you know someone who is an exceptional contributor to the Rational software technical community? Nominate
him or her as a Champion for Rational software today.
We know you've been working hard polishing your Innovate presentation so we've extended the submission deadline until January 21. Already finished yours? Submit it here
Interested in more IBM Rational news?
By: Keith Collyer, PhD, Senior Solution Manager, Electronics and Medical Devices Industry Solutions, IBM, Martin R. Bakal, Worldwide Offering Manager, Electronics Industry, IBM, and Paridhi Verma, Go-to-Market Manager, Electronics Industry, IBM
Medical device developers face challenges that are different from those in developing products in most other industries. Chief among these is the imperative of compliance with safety regulations and industry standards. Three IBM experts describe ways to enhance key processes and improve and integrate to accelerate development, yet still produce high-quality devices that comply with regulations.
Products: Rational DOORS, Rational Team Concert, Rational Quality Manager, Rational Rhapsody
By: Paul Urban, Senior Systems Market Manager, IBM Corporation and Udo Brockmeyer, PhD, CEO, BTC Embedded Systems AG
Developing safety-critical software, where failure can result in injury or loss of life, such as in airplanes, automobiles, trains, or medical devices, requires extra care and effort. The delivery of safe code that is compliant with strict development standards and guidelines such as DO-178C, DO-178B, ISO 26262, IEC 61508, or IEC 62304, can result in increased time and cost of the project. This article describes how to extend the advantages of using the Rhapsody Reference workflow included with the IBM Rational Rhapsody Kit for ISO 26262 and IEC 61508 for development of safety-critical applications. You will learn about the Rhapsody Reference workflow, and how to use model-based testing with the Rational Rhapsody TestConductor Add On to verify the model and the generated code. This reduces the time to deliver high-quality software yet still complies with safety standards.
Product: Rational Rhapsody
By: Francesco Cassullo, Software Developer, IBM and Igor Todorovski, Software Developer, IBM
This is a guide to detecting SQL errors in C/C++ applications with embedded SQL on the IBM z/OS platform. It includes sample code for performing simple error-checking and a more advanced technique for more in-depth error analysis. All material is based on and tested with IBM z/OS DB2 Versions 8 to 10 and z/OS XL C/C++ compilers V1R11 to V1R13.
Product: C/C++ Compilers
IBM Rational Rhapsody family provides multiple editions to help systems engineers and embedded software developers analyze, design, develop, test, and deliver embedded, real-time systems and software.
This week we are also highlighting the following items on our pages that you may find of interest.
Know someone who is an exceptional contributor to the Rational software technical community? Nominate a champion for Rational software today.
Thank you to all of our authors and community participants for making this a great year for developerWorks Rational
. We have enjoyed getting to know you through the following activities:
- Rational community roll call: Through weekly publication schedules, we get to know a lot about our article authors. We are always fascinated by the work that they do, both in and out of their day jobs. So some of them have volunteered to share their stories with you. Through this Q&A series, we hope you've learned something more about what motivates their dynamic and diverse technical minds.
- Content updates: Each week, our production team curates all updates on our "New content on developerWorks Rational" blog posts. If you value receiving technical information about using Rational software in this way, then join the community and subscribe to this blog. We'll keep you posted.
- New communities: We enjoyed watching new communities form, focused on application lifecycle management, agile, and product and systems engineering. Through these emerging spaces came new thoughts and ideas, all voluntarily run by enthusiasts with a common goal of helping you be more successful with software and systems delivery.
In 2013, we're looking forward to making developerWorks a more engaging and educational space for you.
Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!
Robin, Patty, Jae, and Susan