Feeds

Simplified RUP debuts with Windows programmers

Refining the process

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Visual Studio 2005 Team System (VSTS) users will become the first large community of developers to experience a version of the Rational Unified Process (RUP) that has been streamlined to bring consistent application development processes to a "mass market".

Ivar Jacobson Consulting (IJC) has customized its Essential Unified Process (Essential UP) to work with the Microsoft Solutions Framework and will be integrated with VSTS. ICJ has also joined Microsoft's Visual Studio Industry Partner (VSIP) program.

IJC is home to Ivar Jacobson, co-creator of the RUP development methodology used by thousands IBM/Rational programmers - including IBM's massive Global Services operation. Jacobson, IJC founder and co-chairman, joined Rational when his start-up company Objectory was acquired by Rational Software in 1995.

RUP is an object-oriented methodology that defines stages and best practices required during the application development process, and that is delivered through things like tools and manuals.

Problem is, RUP is complicated. Jacobson estimates the RUP manual starts at around 1,500 pages, while the Essential UP guide runs to just 200. That level of complexity has drowned users with features, making it difficult to use and to modify.

Yet a process-based approach to development is vital to ensure applications are built properly and can be extended and updated on an on-going basis.

Lightweight

Jacobson told The Register that Essential UP provides a lightweight approach to tackle this. "We get better and better tools that support process, they support patterns of development software that result in what we call good software.

"For me, good software - apart from a low number of defects - is software that meets the businesses needs and that can change for ever. We don't want software that we have to replace every couple of years."

That sits nicely with Microsoft's own vision for VSTS and the related Dynamic Systems Initiative (DSI). Microsoft wants Windows systems to be self-healing and easy to develop and mange - hence DSI. VSTS is a vital to DSI because it provides a platform of integrated tools that make it easier for developers to build and mange applications.

Microsoft believes the kinds of tools that have delivered similar ALM capabilities, such as those based on RUP from IBM/Rational, have been too complicated for the mass market of developers to really find useful or to accept.

Jacobson backs Microsoft: "I knew when we did RUP it wouldn't be able to reach more than 10 to 20 per cent of the [developer] population. We are making a fresh start... we want to make [Essential UP] super light and agile."

Essential UP uses just five of RUP's core concepts - components, models, iterative and incremental development, application architecture and use cases.

Use cases, for example, have been simplified through introduction of Aspect Oriented Programming, which allows developers to insert features into an application's framework as a module, instead of coding a single monolithic application. That speeds development and cuts down on an application's complexity.

20:80 crops up again

Architecting an application is also simplified because Essential UP uses just a subset of the Unified Modeling Language (UML), the preferred choice of IBM/Rational and other ALM providers for drawing the blueprints of applications. Jacobson believes most developers need only 20 per cent of the capabilities contained in UML, a fact that means the other 80 per cent just get in the way.

"Architecting an application in RUP is very complex. There's nothing wrong with it, it's just hard to learn. We have simplified it and made it more extensible," he said.

VSTS is Essential UP's first port of call, and Jacobson plans to make his methodology available for Java during 2006.

In the long-term, Jacobson is devising a set of intelligent agents that would do away with the need for offline documentation, and would tell programmers what steps they need to take during each step of development and when they need to take them.

Intelligent agents would also help automate an estimated 80 per cent of the repetitive tasks associated with application programming, mandated by other processes-based methodologies such as the Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) from the Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute, Jacobson said.®

Business security measures using SSL

More from The Register

next story
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
Not appy with your Chromebook? Well now it can run Android apps
Google offers beta of tricky OS-inside-OS tech
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
NHS grows a NoSQL backbone and rips out its Oracle Spine
Open source? In the government? Ha ha! What, wait ...?
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.