Software development is the process of developing various computer programs and basic platforms for computers, mobile, and tech systems. Understanding the entire software development methodology offers tremendous opportunities in today’s IT sector.
Agile is an example of a software development methodology that is quite popular among developers today. This method aims at breaking up software developmental stages into several stages so every team or user can provide feedback as early as possible.
With the implementation of standard codes and close collaboration, organizations can ensure uniformity across varying software projects and eliminate confusion. In this article, you’ll learn the key features that every software development practice needs, specifically when implementing the agile methodology.
What are user stories in software development practice? They are simple descriptions of the programmers’ thinking process as they are developing a certain program. In particular, user stories are meant to describe what would happen from the point of view of the end-user. Programmers call this the “user experience design”. Each story is relatively brief, perhaps only ten lines or a page, and they describe a single user function or concept. Implementing this practice in software development is beneficial due to the following reasons:
- Promotes Collaboration: Agile teams use stories to enable their members to collaborate more easily. When two or more people from different teams write user stories that need to be implemented, the whole team can take advantage of that data to come up with a complete solution.
- Visualize Business Logic Of An Application: The stories describe how users interact with the program, and this gives programmers a large quantity of data to work with. Software engineering theory talks about data being a code abstraction. However, this theory can also be applied to user stories. With this tool, the programmer can easily visualize the business logic or rationale behind the application.
- Helps Create Intuitive User Interface: Software developers often have to reconstruct large stories from very small ones. They need to fit the large story into a small story, or vice versa. And when these stories are assembled, the result is often a functional and intuitive user interface. A UI is an important part of the program. The story often describes what the user will see, where they will look, what they can type, and what they could do on a particular screen.
A feature branch allows changes to an existing software to add new functionalities to it without necessarily modifying any files or changing a code. In other words, it is a way of rewriting software in a way that allows for future changes and expansion, without necessarily restarting from scratch. Below are some of the things you need to know about feature branching:
- Add-On Modules: The most common aspect in feature branching are add-on modules. Some examples of this would be code generation functions, database interfaces, and user-defined macros.
- Rewrites: Again, a feature branch does not always have to be a full rewrite of the original software, it can just be a small change, like adding a statement or tweaking the design.
- Debugging: One benefit of feature branching is that it can help you with debugging. When you change one piece of code, you don’t have to worry about writing a new code to go with it. Basically, the feature you added is already in the software, and you can just replace the existing code with it and your problem is solved.
- Improve Program Quality: To improve the quality of your program, adding a feature branch could do a lot of things. First of all, it helps you remove duplicate codes. Most importantly, it helps you add changes to the program faster and more efficiently.
Developers want to get their job done as quickly and efficiently as possible. Therefore, the process of developing software involves a lot of manual work such as bug-fixing, feature checking, and code rewriting. This is an added burden to developers as they will be the ones who will eventually fix bugs that come up before and after the software is released.
Consequently, developers need to spend extra time fixing and tweaking the software to eliminate such issues. Not to mention, this would also cost the company money and resources since the quality of its programs are compromised. To avoid such problems, programmers can use automated testing to check the program they have developed before it is officially launched.
Automated testing allows programmers to focus more on the overall design of the software instead of focusing on each and every specific feature or functionality. It’s a great way to find and fix issues at a faster rate.
In addition, automated testing ensures that the software will meet its intended purpose. If these are followed, then there should be no issues that could lead to software failure. It ensures the functionality and safety of a software program before it is even released to the market.
Software engineers would implement a “quality check” code review, or QC to identify any issues or bugs within the software. This is a detailed analysis of the functionality, structure, and security of the program. During QC, the product’s developers make a list of any bug fixes and suggested code changes.
When a software program is newly developed, it could have several defects. If these defects are not fixed early on, then the quality of the software would be greatly compromised upon release. Therefore, it is important for business owners and tech investors to understand the importance of QC in software development. In addition, the QC team can also suggest several improvements to the software product. The owner can just decide to implement these improvements or not.
The key features of every software development practice include user stories, feature branching, automated testing, and code review. All stories in software development are called user stories because they describe how users interact with the system. The feature branching method, on the other hand, helps you tweak and improve the software without restarting from scratch.
Furthermore, automated testing and code review allows developers to spot problems in the software faster and more efficiently. Bugs and code issues can be identified and fixed, even before the software gets released. All these features or methods should be implemented in software development practice to ensure a functional, safe, efficient, and appealing program.