Archive for May, 2010

  • Getting developers to RTFM

    on May 27, 10 • by Helen Abbott • with 1 Comment

    Documentation is the castor oil of programming. The managers know it must be good, because programmers hate it so much. Gerald M. Weinberg I used to be a strong believer in formal doc reviews. Distribute a draft, plan a meeting, and have everyone gather around the table. But in the last few years, my team has moved towards mostly meetingless reviews–because people hate review meetings (you know, like code reviews, only worse), because people haven’t always read the drafts when they get to the meeting, and because some of our dev team is overseas. First,

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  • Why don’t developers want the latest toys?

    on May 25, 10 • by Gwyn Fisher • with 2 Comments

    There’s a tradition in R&D management that goes something like this: “give them toys and they’ll be happy.” Typically this has meant the biggest monitors, or the fastest CPUs, or an egregiously unnecessary SLI GPU configuration (for, ahem, high capacity computation tasks, right…), or whatever the latest piece of hardware might be that catches the purchasing manager’s eye. But what about the software on that hardware? Sure, we equip people with an IDE (if they’ll use it, or whatever text editor they demand if they won’t) and whatever other tools are mandated as part of

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  • ACTIA Selects Klocwork to Enhance Quality and Reliability of Automotive Software

    on May 25, 10 • by Meranda Powers • with No Comments

    Klocwork expands presence in automotive sector with its unique combination of MISRA and critical defect detection BURLINGTON, Mass. — May 25, 2010 — Klocwork, Inc., the global leader in automated source code analysis solutions for improving developer productivity, today announced that ACTIA, a major player in vehicle electronics and diagnostics, has selected Klocwork to help ensure the quality and reliability of its software-driven automotive solutions. ACTIA will deploy Klocwork Insight static analysis to provide automatic detection of critical defects in its C, C++ and Java code and to enable compliance with the Motor Industry Software

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  • Observations from the Agile in Action Roadshow

    on May 21, 10 • by Todd Landry • with 1 Comment

    Just returned from my second stint on the Agile in Action roadshow with our friends from Electric Cloud, Perforce, and VersionOne, this time visiting the cities of Toronto, Philadelphia and Chicago. Rather than going into minute detail (and the fact it is a Friday afternoon before a long weekend), I thought I would share a few random observations from this trip: Organizations (and individuals) are begging for as much information and guidance as they can get on Agile and tools for Agile, and are willing to give up a days in the office and brave

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  • So many developer tools – which ones to pick

    on May 19, 10 • by Eric Hollebone • with 1 Comment

    What is the ROI to the company for developer tools?  This has always been and continues to be a struggle in any development organization. Developer productivity to date has been very poorly measured and studied. Programming has always been a creative task bound within the constraints of  a framework.  Many people have tried to measure direct individual developer productivity with less than convincing results: Bugs per dev, bugs per team, bug regression rates, bug trend lines, comparative .NET Framework book sales rates,  # of [static analysis] violations per kloc, etc, etc.. the list is really endless… So when

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  • New Research Findings Shows Software Development Teams Have Not Modernized Out-of-Date Code Review Practices

    on May 17, 10 • by Meranda Powers • with No Comments

    Sixty percent surveyed still conducting traditional in-person reviews despite growth in distributed teams and availability of collaborative tools BURLINGTON, Mass. — May 17, 2010 — Klocwork, Inc., the global leader in automated source code analysis solutions for improving developer productivity, today shared results from a new independent research study commissioned by Klocwork and conducted by Forrester Consulting that revealed inconsistent and limited use of modern tools and technologies that can help facilitate the code review process. The study surveyed US-based software development professionals involved with code reviews within their respective organizations with the goal of

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  • MISRA rules that don’t make sense

    on May 13, 10 • by Alen Zukich • with 3 Comments

    Previously I posted the value of using coding standards, specifically MISRA C and MISRA C++.  This time I wanted to go through some general experiences we had with some of the checkers, specifically the ones that seem to throw a lot of violated rules, to the point that on some code bases MISRA flagged more than one error per LOC! There are still tons of great rules you can apply even if you don’t make an embedded product.  But as I said before, it doesn’t make sense to turn on all the MISRA rules.  After

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  • Leveraging static analysis

    on May 12, 10 • by Alen Zukich • with 1 Comment

    In a previous post I discussed the process where we practice dogfooding.  This is the process of using Klocwork on Klocwork (KonK).  We started this program several years back with the hopes that we would learn some valuable lessons about usability, performance and anything else that would give us an edge.  The truth is that KonK has consistently allowed us to test our design assumptions early by allowing our own developers to use Klocwork as part of their development. One of the unexpected results was inadvertently uncovering data that further validated for us the importance

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  • If you want users to RTFM, write a better FM

    on May 6, 10 • by Helen Abbott • with 9 Comments

    If you want users to RTFM, write a better FM

    When I was documenting a new refactoring plugin for Vim, I checked out the Vim web site, and came across this blasphemy: Vim isn’t an editor designed to hold its users’ hands. It is a tool, the use of which must be learned. Later, someone sent me this beauty, from Elitist Jerks: Stop being lazy and read. Are users lazy? Do they expect hand-holding? Do they expect one button and no manual? Or is this more true to life? In the end, it probably comes down to this: Make tools usable. Then technical communicators can

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  • ESC SJ 2010 – Optimism, Tools for small codebases and MISRA

    on May 5, 10 • by Eric Hollebone • with No Comments

    ESC SJ 2010 – Optimism, Tools for small codebases and MISRA

    I just got back from a visit to the Valley and had an awesome week in San Jose/San Fran.  I even had time to play a bit of the tourist this time (I ran the Golden Gate bridge/Presidio).  All that was fun, but what I always enjoy is the conversations we had with customers and prospects at this year’s ESC SJ 2010 conference. It is always interesting listening to their successes and teasing out the trending topics and new issues that matter to development teams.  Here are the top three themes that caught my ear this year

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