Software Development with Certainty

June 2, 2009

The current phase of the project is to turn an impressive prototype developed by one person into a library, and applications based upon it, that can be simultaneously developed and used by a team.

The development process gains a new dimension once you have published your first version or have your first user. The task is made more tricky due to the absence of the original author.
In other words: situation normal, don’t start from here.

The Erewhon applications, Gaboto library and its main dependencies ng4j and Jena are all changing rapidly. New functionality is being added and code and dependencies are being refactored and changed. The challenge is to enable this change without breaking installed systems or at least not breaking them unknowingly. This is ensured by establishing a contract between the code and the design by the use of tests. The tests guarantee that the system actually does do what it claims. Or, more properly, the tests are exactly what the system claims to do. Read the rest of this entry »