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Lecture 4. COMSATS Islamabad. E nterprise S ystems D evelopment (  CSC447 ). Muhammad Usman , Assistant Professor . Lecture 4 An introduction to Requirements E ngineering. Requirements-Hardest Task.

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lecture 4
Lecture 4

COMSATS Islamabad




( CSC447)

Muhammad Usman, Assistant Professor

Lecture 4

An introduction to Requirements Engineering

requirements hardest task
Requirements-Hardest Task
  • “The hardest single part of building a software system is deciding precisely what to build.
  • No other part of the conceptual work is as difficult as establishing the detailed technical requirements, including all the interfaces to people, to machines, and to other software systems.
  • No other part of the work so cripples the resulting system if done wrong. No other part is more difficult to rectify later.”
          • F B Brooks
requirements engineering
Requirements engineering
  • The process of establishing the services that the customer requires from a system and the constraints under which it operates and is developed.
  • The requirements themselves are the descriptions of the system services and constraints that are generated during the requirements engineering process.
what is a requirement
What is a requirement?
  • It may range from a high-level abstract statement of a service or of a system constraint to a detailed mathematical functional specification.
  • This is inevitable as requirements may serve a dual function
    • May be the basis for a bid for a contract - therefore must be open to interpretation;
    • May be the basis for the contract itself - therefore must be defined in detail;
    • Both these statements may be called requirements.
types of r equirements
Types of Requirements
  • User requirements
    • Statements in natural language plus diagrams of the services the system provides and its operational constraints. Written for customers.
  • System requirements
    • A structured document setting out detailed descriptions of the system’s functions, services and operational constraints. Defines what should be implemented so may be part of a contract between client and contractor.
functional and non functional requirements
Functional and non-functional requirements
  • Functional requirements
    • Statements of services the system should provide, how the system should react to particular inputs and how the system should behave in particular situations.
    • May state what the system should not do.
  • Non-functional requirements
    • Constraints on the services or functions offered by the system such as timing constraints, constraints on the development process, standards, etc.
    • Often apply to the system as a whole rather than individual features or services.
  • Domain requirements
    • Constraints on the system from the domain of operation
functional requirements
Functional requirements
  • Describe functionality or system services.
  • Depend on the type of software, expected users and the type of system where the software is used.
  • Functional user requirements may be high-level statements of what the system should do.
  • Functional system requirements should describe the system services in detail.
functional r equirements for hmis
Functional Requirements for HMIS
  • A user shall be able to search the appointments lists for all clinics.
  • The system shall generate each day, for each clinic, a list of patients who are expected to attend appointments that day.
  • Each staff member using the system shall be uniquely identified by his or her 8-digit employee number.
requirements imprecision
Requirements imprecision
  • Problems arise when requirements are not precisely stated.
  • Ambiguous requirements may be interpreted in different ways by developers and users.
  • Consider the term ‘search’ in requirement 1
    • User intention – search for a patient name across all appointments in all clinics;
    • Developer interpretation – search for a patient name in an individual clinic. User chooses clinic then search.
requirements completeness and consistency
Requirements completeness and consistency
  • In principle, requirements should be both complete and consistent.
  • Complete
    • They should include descriptions of all facilities required.
  • Consistent
    • There should be no conflicts or contradictions in the descriptions of the system facilities.
  • In practice, it is impossible to produce a complete and consistent requirements document.
non functional requirements
Non-functional requirements
  • These define system properties and constraints e.g. reliability, response time and storage requirements. Constraints are I/O device capability, system representations, etc.
  • Process requirements may also be specified mandating a particular IDE, programming language or development method.
  • Non-functional requirements may be more critical than functional requirements. If these are not met, the system may be useless.
non functional requirements implementation
Non-functional requirements implementation
  • Non-functional requirements may affect the overall architecture of a system rather than the individual components.
    • For example, to ensure that performance requirements are met, you may have to organize the system to minimize communications between components.
  • A single non-functional requirement, such as a security requirement, may generate a number of related functional requirements that define system services that are required.
    • It may also generate requirements that restrict existing requirements.
non functional classifications
Non-functional classifications
  • Product requirements
    • Requirements which specify that the delivered product must behave in a particular way e.g. execution speed, reliability, etc.
  • Organisational requirements
    • Requirements which are a consequence of organisational policies and procedures e.g. process standards used, implementation requirements, etc.
  • External requirements
    • Requirements which arise from factors which are external to the system and its development process e.g. interoperability requirements, legislative requirements, etc.
goals and requirements
Goals and requirements
  • Non-functional requirements may be very difficult to state precisely and imprecise requirements may be difficult to verify.
  • Goal
    • A general intention of the user such as ease of use.
  • Verifiable non-functional requirement
    • A statement using some measure that can be objectively tested.
  • Goals are helpful to developers as they convey the intentions of the system users.
usability requirements
Usability requirements
  • The system should be easy to use by medical staff and should be organized in such a way that user errors are minimized. (Goal)
  • Medical staff shall be able to use all the system functions after four hours of training. After this training, the average number of errors made by experienced users shall not exceed two per hour of system use. (Testable non-functional requirement)
domain requirements
Domain requirements
  • The system’s operational domain imposes requirements on the system.
    • For example, a train control system has to take into account the braking characteristics in different weather conditions.
  • Domain requirements be new functional requirements, constraints on existing requirements or define specific computations.
  • If domain requirements are not satisfied, the system may be unworkable.
domain requirements problems
Domain requirements problems
  • Understandability
    • Requirements are expressed in the language of the application domain;
    • This is often not understood by software engineers developing the system.
  • Implicitness
    • Domain specialists understand the area so well that they do not think of making the domain requirements explicit.
faqs about requirements
FAQS about requirements
  • What are requirements?
    • A statement of a system service or constraint
  • What is requirements engineering?
    • The processes involved in developing system requirements
  • How much does requirements engineering cost?
    • About 15% of system development costs
  • What is a requirements engineering process?
    • The structured set of activities involved in developing system requirements
faqs contd
FAQs contd.
  • What happens when the requirements are wrong?
    • Systems are late, unreliable and don’t meet customers needs
  • Is there an ideal requirements engineering process?
    • No - processes must be tailored to organisational needs
  • What is a requirements document?
    • The formal statement of the system requirements
  • What are system stakeholders?
    • Anyone affected in some way by the system
faqs contd1
FAQs contd.
  • What is the relationship between requirements and design?
    • Requirements and design are interleaved. They should, ideally, be separate processes but in practice this is impossible
  • What is requirements management?
    • The processes involved in managing changes to requirements
systems engineering
Systems engineering
  • There is a close relationship between software and more general system requirements
  • Computer-based systems fall into two broad categories:
    • User-configured systems where a purchaser puts together a system from existing software products
    • Custom systems where a customer produces a set of requirements for hardware/software system and a contractor develops and delivers that system
system engineering activities
System engineering activities
  • System requirements engineering
    • The requirements for the system as a whole are established and written to be understandable to all stakeholders
  • Architectural design
    • The system is decomposed into sub-systems
  • Requirements partitioning
    • Requirements are allocated to these sub-systems
  • Software requirements engineering
    • More detailed system requirements are derived for the system software
system engineering activities1
System engineering activities
  • Sub-system development
    • The hardware and software sub-systems are designed and implemented in parallel.
  • System integration
    • The hardware and software sub-systems are put together to make up the system.
  • System validation
    • The system is validated against its requirements.
requirements document
Requirements document
  • The requirements document is a formal document used to communicate the requirements to customers, engineers and managers.
  • The requirements document describes:
    • The services and functions which the system should provide
    • The constraints under which the system must operate
    • Overall properties of the system i.e.. constraints on the system’s emergent properties
    • Definitions of other systems which the system must integrate with.
requirements document1
Requirements document
  • The requirements document describes:
    • Information about the application domain of the system e.g. how to carry out particular types of computation
    • Constraints on the processes used to develop the system
    • Description of the hardware on which the system is to run
  • In addition, the requirements document should always include an introductory chapter which provides an overview of the system, business needs supported by the system and a glossary which explains the terminology used.
users of requirements documents
Users of requirements documents
  • System customers
    • specify the requirements and read them to check they meet their needs
  • Project managers
    • Use the requirements document to plan a bid for system and to plan the system development process
  • System engineers
    • Use the requirements to understand the system being developed
  • System test engineers
    • Use the requirements to develop validation tests for the system
  • System maintenance engineers
    • Use the requirements to help understand the system
requirements document structure
Requirements document structure
  • IEEE/ANSI 830-1993 standard proposes a structure for software requirements documents
  • 1. Introduction

1.1 Purpose of requirements document

1.2 Scope of the product

1.3 Definitions, acronyms and abbreviations

1.4 References

1.5 Overview of the remainder of the document

requirements document structure1
Requirements document structure
  • 2. General description

2.1 Product perspective

2.2 Product functions

2.3 User characteristics

2.4 General constraints

2.5 Assumptions and dependencies

  • 3. Specific requirements

Covering functional, non-functional and interface requirements.

  • 4. Appendices
  • Index
  • Gerald Kotonya and Ian Sommerville, REQUIREMENTS Engineering PROCESSES AND TECHNIQUES by Wiley Publishers