A system dynamics based study of software reuse and its determinants
Aiken, Wayne Lee
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Software cost for DoD is a critical issue. Software reuse promises significant cost savings by using previously developed components thus increasing productivity. Quality is improved because these components are well designed, well documented, and well tested. This thesis studies the determinants of software reuse using a system dynamics computer model, the Dynamcia Reuse Model, which simulates the activities of a software development organization engaged in organization-wide, systematic software reuse. Results indicate that setting goals of consumption and production of components too low will lead to a decreased reuse rate of turnover of personnel. In the area of consumption and production costs of reusable components, production costs are more critical. Regarding employee turnover, reuse is enhanced by a low rate of turnover of personnel. In establishing a successful reuse program, creating repository is an important factor and the study indicates there is a structurally stable repository value. Concerning the software development rate of components, a steady development rate leads to a more consistent reuse rate. DoD managers can now us these results in formulating policies concerning their systematic reuse program.
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