class_1 - Software Engineering 3156 Fall 2001 Section 1...

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Software Engineering 3156 Fall 2001 Section 1 5-Sep-01 Class #1: Intro Phil Gross
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Today What and Why of SoftE Course Mechanics
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What Is Software Engineering? An attempt to apply engineering principles to the creation of software Production of fault-free software, on time and under budget, that fulfills the users’ needs. Chemistry vs. Chemical Engineering
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Some Software Has To Work Safety/Control “Please wait while we reboot the nuclear power plant” Military “Oops, my gun crashed” Embedded “The microwave seems to be locked on ‘high’” Etc. “If your pacemaker freezes, find the little ctrl-alt-del buttons”
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Some Software Needs Many Programmers No matter how bright you are, you will have a hard time “hacking together” The airline reservation system The Microsoft Office suite Control software for an aircraft carrier A fully compliant C++ compiler
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Consider The Advanced EHF Satellite Budgeted for billions Once it goes up, difficult to fix major bugs Needs to work reliably Complex communications protocol Many contractors working together http://www.spacedaily.com/news/milstar-00b.html
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Unfortunately Software Engineering is an ambitious name (cf. Political Science) Think about Computer Engineering major Compare to AI
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Situation Is Grim http://www.space.com/businesstechnology/tech RISKS Digest http://catless.ncl.ac.uk/Risks Terrible engineering combined with widespread belief in computer infallibility
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Why Is Most Software So Bad? Minor consequences for failure Reboot/reinstall Programmer delusion Bugs don’t appear until integration Last step Too late Kick a bridge and it still stands. But flip a bit…
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Don’t Forget Management Idiocy “You’re behind; I’m assigning 75 novice programmers to the project to help speed you up.” “Take this ancient software and make it…” “Multi-user and Fault-tolerant” “Work on this new system” Cf. collapsing buildings Dilbert
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Why Should You Take This Class? Arguably one of the most useful classes
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class_1 - Software Engineering 3156 Fall 2001 Section 1...

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