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Applying Use Cases: A Practical Guide
Software development books
Jason P. Winters
August 15, 1998
Week: 73 All time: 28
manuellemos.netFor those that are not aware, use cases are a form of describing the different ways that a software system is supposed to be used. It envolves the description of all types of users and systems that participate in each situation that a system should handle in the scope of a given project.
Defining a project with use cases has become a standard way to specify and document medium and large sized projects, in such way that is easy to understand by all parties envolved including the sponsor of a project, the clients, the users and the development team.
This book is probably one of the best approaches to the challenge of explaining with a simple language what use cases are, their importance and how they can be used to implement the best practices in software project specification, planning, construction and delivery.
It starts by going through the initial steps of project specification that include project description and how to do risk analisis, so you can antecipate very early the eventual problems that may lead a project to failure and avoid those risks before it is too late.
The book addresses all aspects that really matter during specification: identification of use cases, envolved actors, defining a realistic scope for a project, documenting use cases distinguing primary and secondary scenarios, dividing large systems according to logical and pratical criteria.
Aspects that concern the actual implementation are also covered like: planning, estimating work from use cases, different points of view to make project reviews already during implementation, constructing the projects through key abstractions and scheduling the project delivery by successive iterations of fixed periods of time.
Throughout the book several types of UML based diagramming techniques are introduced as means to help describing more clearly the concepts and the structure of a project.
This book is particularly recommended to people that need to manage or implement medium to large sized projects. If you were not yet introduced to the best practices of project specification and planning based on use cases, reading this book may be your opportunity to evolve your knowledge in this area, even if you are not yet a project manager. If you are not yet familiar with UML, this may also be a good opportunity to learn about this industry standard language for modeling and diagramming software projects.
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