Is Logical Data Modeling Dead?

The key to getting people to at least appreciate logical data models is to just do them as part of whatever modeling effort you are working on. Don’t say “stop”. Just model on. Demonstrate, don’t tell your teams where the business requirements are written down, where they live. Then demonstrate how that leads to beautiful physical models as well.

Source: Is Logical Data Modeling Dead? | InfoAdvisors Blog

UML Tool for Fast UML Diagrams

UMLet is a free, open-source UML tool with a simple user interface: draw UML diagrams fast, produce sequence and activity diagrams from plain text, export diagrams to eps, pdf, jpg, svg, and clipboard, share diagrams using Eclipse, and create new, custom UML elements. UMLet runs stand-alone or as Eclipse plug-in on Windows, OS X and Linux. (Also, check out its sister tool PLOTlet to create chart grids and our other tools.)

via UML Tool for Fast UML Diagrams.

Rambler Takes Home The Disrupt NY 2013 Hackathon Grand Prize, Learn To Drive And Radical Are Runners Up

Rambler, created by William Hockey, Zach Perret and Michael Kelly, is a web app that lets users view their credit and debit card transactions on a map. During the dev process, the team tapped the Foursquare API for locations and the Plaid API to access user spending data.

via Rambler Takes Home The Disrupt NY 2013 Hackathon Grand Prize, Learn To Drive And Radical Are Runners Up | TechCrunch.

This is an interesting science project.  The security implications however would cause me to steer clear of this app entirely.  I don’t understand what benefit anyone would gain from using this app and this is the grand prize winner.

Here’s another one

After 24 hours of hard work at the Disrupt NY Hackathon, Michael Kolodny, Jingen Lin and Ricardo Falletti demoed us HangoutLater, a nifty hack built on top of the Foursquare API. When you check in and a friend is close to you, it will ask you if you want to hang out later. Then, it will automatically find you a central location to meet.

If they’re that close to you why not just talk to them the old fashioned way?  And my favorite:

A project at our Disrupt Hackathon called “Bar Power” is an app that will remind you to “not be a douchebag.” It’s somewhat of a game, walking you through nice things to do when you enter a bar. For example, the app will suggest that you say “hi” to the bartender and introduce yourself. If you do it and mark it down in the app, you get some karma points.

Perhaps they should consider a little less coding/hacking and a little more focus on requirements.  My favorite comment about the above app:

BREAKING: Yahoo just acquired it for $300 million.

Customer Reviews: SimCity – Standard Edition

The hours upon hours since launch that I haven’t been able to log in, whether it be sitting in queues, or server busy messages, or just plain old not working screens, I’ve managed to do a heap of things that I never do when I’m locked in my man cave playing video games.

I’ve washed the dishes, the laundry, changed the oil in the car, mopped the floors, dusted, did a spot of gardening, greeted my children who I hadn’t really seen since Christmas, walked the dog, asked how my wife’s day has been and listened to the entire response, restocked the groceries and many more things! My family has never been happier that they’ve got a father and husband again.

In fact, I feel like Simcity has given me a new lease on life. This wouldn’t have been possible without the seemingly crazy decision to have constant online connections and server side save points even for single player.

So I can only thank EA and Maxis. Your failures have been my rewards. 5 stars!

via Customer Reviews: SimCity – Standard Edition [Download].

I don’t ever recall a product launch that went this badly.  I’ve been playing Sim City since version 2 and was looking forward to this.  This needs to be filed under what were they thinking?!

Brogrammer Killed The Requirements Engineering Star

Writing functional and technical specifications – even for simple programs – is a vital skill, forcing programmers to think through what it is they want to do before they start doing it. They’re also invaluable for the generation (or two) of programmers who may need to modify or update your code after you’ve moved on. Trying to make even simple changes to a program without introducing new bugs requires a detailed understanding of what the program or function is supposed to do and how it was written. Without proper documentation, that job becomes much, much harder, Lamport says.

via Brogrammer Killed The Requirements Engineering Star.

Interesting read as well as the two featured comments.

Why We Should Build Software Like We Build Houses

Architects draw detailed plans before a brick is laid or a nail is hammered. Programmers and software engineers don’t. Can this be why houses seldom collapse and programs often crash?

via Why We Should Build Software Like We Build Houses | Wired Opinion |

This analogy made me laugh because software doesn’t have to fight gravity or -20F temperatures or whatever else planet Earth has in store for a physical structure.  The gist of this article however seems to be that every software project should start with and needs a solid foundation of requirements.  Shout out to system engineering!

Update:  Here’s an interesting comment from slashdot and a shout out to awk.

If builders built houses the way programmers built programs, the first woodpecker to come along would destroy civilization.
Gerald Weinberg

Trivia: Gerald Weinberg is the “w” in awk. Sadly, things haven’t changed much since back when.


System Development Life Cycle

Computerworld – Once upon a time, software development consisted of a programmer writing code to solve a problem or automate a procedure. Nowadays, systems are so big and complex that teams of architects, analysts, programmers, testers and users must work together to create the millions of lines of custom-written code that drive our enterprises.

To manage this, a number of system development life cycle (SDLC) models have been created: waterfall, fountain, spiral, build and fix, rapid prototyping, incremental, and synchronize and stabilize.

via System Development Life Cycle – Computerworld.


rcm2 limited has considerable experience and expertise in Systems Engineering/System Integration processes, Requirements Management processes and IT tools, in particular the DOORS database from Telelogic. We have a number of DOORS licenses that are shared among our DOORS User Group for various client projects and internal consultancy as well as bespoke solutions.

via DOORS (Dynamic Object-Oriented Requirements System).