Get a (tool-selection) plan, Stan

Get a (tool-selection) plan, Stan

on Jul 27, 10 • by Patti Murphy • with 2 Comments

Today, Mark Grice is in a better mood. The last time I spoke to the Klocwork Director and Manager of the International Reseller/Partner Network, he outlined 7 habits of highly ineffective Source Code Analysis (SCA) tool selection. Among those terrible habits, he described an SCA tool-selection process that involved...

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Mark Grice in a more peaceful moment.

Today, Mark Grice is in a better mood.

The last time I spoke to the Klocwork Director and Manager of the International Reseller/Partner Network, he outlined 7 habits of highly ineffective Source Code Analysis (SCA) tool selection.

Among those terrible habits, he described an SCA tool-selection process that involved endless feature comparisons and massive checklists of irrelevant requirements.

His head almost exploded, but on this day our SCA guru was calmer.  Clearly, he’s been using relaxation techniques or drinking some of the good stuff, like acai juice.

According to Grice, successful SCA tool adoption involves three key steps:

  1. Involve your developers in the process.
    “Developers understand what their requirements are,” Grice says. “And that means your selection criteria will be more realistic and achievable, and it will focus on what’s relevant to the organization’s software and environment. Developers are also best equipped to assess the SCA results.”
  2. Limit your selection to market-leading tools with the functionality relevant to your software needs.
    “For example, if MISRA compliance is something you care about, then make that part of your selection criteria,” he says.
  3. Have a game plan with a path and a defined end. Work toward a goal that’s realistic—spend enough time, but not forever, finding the tool (or tools) you need.
    “Have a good idea of what will constitute success, and be prepared to make a decision and move on,” Grice says. “Avoid paralysis analysis—unless your goal is to just waste time and money and contribute nothing to improving your software.”

That’s it for today. Grice is off to yoga class (um, or a pub). Stayed tuned for the next post in this series–How smart companies adopt SCA tools.

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