WHAT IS SOFTWARE ENGINEERING AND IT’S IMPORTANCE IN OUR DAILY LIFE?
WHAT IS SOFTWARE ENGINEERING
Software engineering is the process of analyzing user needs and then designing, constructing, and testing end-user applications that will satisfy these needs through the use of software programming languages.
It is the application of engineering principles to software development. In contrast to simple programming, software engineering is used for larger and more complex software systems, which are used as critical systems for businesses and organizations.
Typical formal definitions of software engineering are: “the application of a systematic, disciplined, quantifiable approach to the development, operation, and maintenance of software. Software engineering is relatively a new area of engineering though, but the scope of software engineering is extremely broad. Being one of the prominent branches of the field of Engineering, it’s growing among the fastest fields in the world today.
It must be noted that the term software development can be used for every type of software development whether it’s as simple as visual basic for applications Modules for Microsoft Word, Excel or Access or developing large, expensive and complicated applications for businesses or creating software for gaming entertainment.
Software engineers are computer programming professionals. It’s worth mentioning that a software engineer is also a programmer, as he writes codes, but a programmer may not be called a software engineer, because in the former case, one needs to have a formal education.
Besides, a software engineer is the one who follows a systematic process that leads to understanding the requirements, working with teams and various professionals in order to create the application software or components or modules that fulfill the specific needs of the users successfully; whereas a computer programmer can work independently, as he understands algorithms and knows how to create codes following the specifications given by the software engineers.
IT’S USE IN OUR DAILY LIFE
However, software engineering is a vast field. It is not just limited to computer programming, but it’s much more than computer programming. It covers a wide range of professions from business to graphic designs or video game development.
Not just in a specific field, but every field of work, specific software is needed. Since the software is developed and embedded in the machines in order that it could meet with all intents and purposes of the users belonging to various professions, software engineering is of great application and assistance.
Not only the field of software engineering involves using some common computer languages, such as C, C++, Java, Python and Visual Basic in an appropriate manner that the intended results may be attained, but it also leads to apply the concepts in such a way that the development of the software may be made effectively and efficiently.
Software engineers or developers are the creative minds behind computers or programs. Some develop the application software for clients and companies analyzing the needs of the users. Some develop the system software used to run the devices and to control the networks.
Whatever be the nature of work, software engineering is one of the highest-paid fields in this modern-day and age. It’s an up-and-coming field, as it’s believed that it’s likely to grow much faster than the average compared to other professions.
If you have strong problem-solving skills, an eye for details and good understanding at mathematical functions, then you may consider this lucrative field of study that could give you various benefits including a higher level of job satisfaction recompensing your creative efforts.
BIG FACTORS IN SOFTWARE ENGINEERING
FLEXIBILITY AND EXTENSIBILITY
Flexibility is the ability of software to add/modify/remove functionality without damaging the current system. Extensibility is the ability of software to add functionality without damaging system, so it may be thought of as a subset of flexibility. Those functionality changes may occur according to changing requirements, or an obligation if the development process is one of the iterative methods. Change is inevitable in software development and so, this is one of the most important properties of quality software.
MAINTAINABILITY AND READABILITY
Maintainability is a little similar with flexibility but it focuses on modifications about error corrections and minor function modifications, not major functional extensibilities. It can be supported with useful interface definitions, documentation, and self-documenting code and/or code documentation. The more correct and useful documentation exists, the more maintainability can be performed.
PERFORMANCE AND EFFICIENCY
Performance is mostly about the response time of the software. This response time should be in acceptable intervals (e.g. max. a few seconds), and should not increase if transaction count increases. And also, resources are expensive. Efficiency must be supported by resource utilization. As an exaggerated example, the ability to perform a simple function only by using a 32 processor machine or 1 TB disk space is not acceptable. Optimal source/performance ratio must be aimed.
A scalable system responds to user actions in an acceptable amount of time, even if load increases. Of course, more hardware may be added for handling increasing user transaction, but the architecture should not change while doing this. This is called vertical scalability. The ability to run on multiple, increasing count of machines is multiple processing. If the software can perform that type of processing, this is called horizontal scalability. A preferred scalable system should suit both of these methods.
AVAILABILITY, ROBUSTNESS, FAULT TOLERANCE AND RELIABILITY
A robust software should not lose its availability even in most failure states. Even if some components are broken down, it may continue running. Besides, even if the whole application crashes, it may recover itself using backup hardware and data with fault tolerance approaches. There should always be B and even C, D .. plans. Reliability also stands for the integrity and consistency of the software even under high load conditions. So it is relevant with availability and scalability. An unreliable system is also unscalable.
USABILITY AND ACCESSIBILITY
User interfaces are the only visible parts of software according to the viewpoint of the user. So, simplicity, taking less time to complete a job, fast learnability etc. are very important in this case. The most well-known principle for this property is KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid). Simple is always the best. Usable software should also support different accessibility types of control for people with disabilities.
PLATFORM COMPATIBILITY AND PORTABILITY
Quality software should run on as much various platforms as they can. So, more people can make use of it. In different contexts, we may mention different platforms, this may be OS platforms, browser types etc. And portability is about adapting software that can run on different platforms, for being more platform compatible. In this sense, portability is also related to flexibility.
TESTABILITY AND MANAGEABILITY
Quality software requires quality testing. Source code should be tested with the most coverage and with the most efficient testing methods. This can be performed by using encapsulation, interfaces, patterns, low coupling etc. techniques correctly. Besides testability, qualified software should be manageable after deployment. It may be monitored for e.g. performance or data usage status or may enable the developer to configure the system easily. Creating a successful logging system is another very important issue about manageability.
Security is a very important issue on software development, especially for web or mobile-based ones which may have millions of users with the ability of remote accessing to the system. You should construct a security policy and apply it correctly by leaving no entry points. This may include authorization and authentication techniques, network attack protection, data encryption and so on. all possible types of security leaks should be considered, otherwise one day only one attack may crash your whole application and the whole company.
FUNCTIONALITY AND CORRECTNESS
Functionality (or correctness) is the conformity of the software with actual requirements and specifications. In fact, this is the precondition attribute of an application, and maybe not a quality factor, but we wanted to point that as the last quality factor, for taking attention: Quality factors are not meaningful when we are talking about unfunctional software. First, perform desired functionality and produce correct software, then apply quality factors on it. If you can perform both parallelly, it is the best.
Software engineering continues to prove very essential to our daily lives. There are so many distinct features that make a good software engineer. There are various success factors that guarantee a successful software development project. Also, if you are in need of a software engineer or development project, you can contact us for a quote FORTRAN HOUSE, our software services are second to none based on our wealth of knowledge and experience on software development, et al, this makes us stand out from the competition.
This article has been retrieved from https://fortranhouse.com/blog/2020/07/01/what-is-software-engineering-and-its-importance-in-our-daily-life/