Software projects versus other types of project

Many of the techniques of general project management are applicable to software project management, but Fred Brooks pointed out that the products of software projects have certain characteristics that make them different.

One way of perceiving software project management is as the process of making visible that which is invisible.

Invisibility When a physical artefact such as a bridge or road is being constructed the progress being made can actually be seen. With software, progress is not immediately visible.

Complexity Per dollar, pound or euro spent, software products contain more complexity than other engineered artefacts.

Flexibility The ease with which software can be changed is usually seen as one of its strengths. However this means that where the software system interfaces with a physical or organizational system, it is expected that, where necessary, the software will change to accommodate the other components rather than vice versa. This means the software systems are likely to be subject to a high degree of change.

Brooks, F. P. No silver bullet: essence and accidents of software engineering'. This essay has been included in The Mythical Man-Month. Anniversary Edition. Addison-Wesley. 1995.

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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