The tools selected for evaluation were: EssentialSET®, Estimate Professional®, GQMaspect®, IQUAL®, MetriFlame®, Quality Builder®, SQUID®, The Defect Detective® and THESEUS®.
A brief description of each tool is presented here, based on each vendors own claims about its product.
EssentialSET® understands a group of tools that provide a framework for the software development key practices. The complete group of tools includes material that covers disciplines such as business planning, projects management, software development, maintenance and software operation, quality assurance, requirements management, configuration management, processes definition and improvement, change management, projects control and monitor, projects closing, and revision.
Software Productivity Center Inc. 2000. Essential SET. Available from World Wide Web: http://www.spc.ca/products/eset/index.htm
Estimate Professional® eliminates all projects conjecture and uncertainty. It recognizes the natural volatility in software development and variability using the Monte Carlo simulation. This is the only management tool that combines the estimation models (COCOMO 2.0 and the Putnam Methodology) with statistical methods to show how the success probabilities can be maximized.
Software Productivity Center Inc. 2000. Estimate Professional. Available from World Wide Web: http://www.spc.ca/products/estimate/index.htm
GQMaspect® (GQM Abstraction Sheet and GQM Plan Editing and Construction Tool) is a prototype that implements state-of-the-art processes and serves as support to the phase of planning of the measuring of programs based on the goal question metrics (GQM) paradigm.
Hoffmann M., Birk, A., Els, F., and Kempkens, R. 1996. GQMaspect v.1.0. User Manual.
Integrated QUALity (IQUAL)
IQUAL® was created by Two Consult to integrate all the aspects and critical activities that understand the modern quality management and the handling of the derived documentation of the application of ISO 9000. IQUAL® understands eight functional units or modules: management of processes, management of documentation, audits, nonconformity and corrective actions, calibration, meetings of quality revision, quality results, and work projects and groups.
Two Consult IQUAL. 1999. The Comprehensive Tool for Integrated Quality Management. Available from World Wide Web: http://www.twoconsult.com/twoconsult/website.nsf/v0/snapshot.htm*
The process of goals refinement uses questions to translate them to metrics. It is documented in a goal question metrics (GQM) plan. MetriFlame® uses the GQM paradigm to define metrics; therefore, its constituent parts (goals, questions, and metrics) can be fed into the system, and the results of the metrics can be examined (question by question or goal by goal). MetriFlame supports the GQM paradigm to gather data for measuring, to define and to calculate metric, and to analyze the results of the metric representing them in graphic form.
VTT Electronics. 1999. MetriFlame User Guide. Available from World Wide Web: http://www.vtt.fi/ele/research/soh/products/metriflame
Quality Builder: A Quality Management Tool
Quality Builder is a tool to implement quality programs into the whole organization. It helps organizations introduce quality improvements and offer quality assurance improvement, besides producing appraisal results. Quality Builder® understands a group of processes that promote the quality practices, it leans in a software based on Internet/intranet, and it uses workflow and database technologies.
MCD, Human and Organizational Development Consultants. 1997. Quality Builder. Available from World Wide Web: http://www.mcd.uk.com/pages/qualbuild.htm*
Software QUality In Development (SQUID)
SQUID® is a method and tool for quality assurance and control that allows a software development organization to plan and control the product quality during development. SQUID® was developed to satisfy the necessity of comparison of projects with similar characteristics. SQUID® makes it possible to control and assure the product and the process quality, which is carried out according to the necessities of each organization and is based on its own database.
Bøegh, J., S. Depanfilis, B. Kitchenham, and A. Pasquini. 1999. A method for software quality planning, control and evaluation. IEEE Software 16: 69-77.
The Defect Detective
The Defect Detective® tool provides a combination of capacities to manage the quality processes through the life cycle of complete development, from the requirements until the implementation. The tool supports important elements of the SEI/CMM, ISO 9000, and SPICE, relating product quality with process quality.
Information Technology Effectiveness, Inc. 1998. The Defect Detective.
THESEUS is a management tool created to provide quality to the systems with conformity to ISO 9001 and SPICE. This tool is one of the products of AMPLI Programme. THESEUS is formed by THESEUS*Management and THESEUS*Broadcast. The first allows coding procedures and guides, work descriptions, documents models, and so on. The data are stored in a relational database to be used with THESEUS*Broadcast, which is based on Internet/extranet technology, and it assures that the quality manuals circulate throughout the organization.
Ariane II Group. 2000. Theseus.
*These links are now inactive; they were active at the time of the manuscript's submission.