An examination of the Cosmos model for use in Department of Defense software development management
Drake, Steven G.
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Currently, the proper management of DoD software development projects is lacking. This is due, in large pan, to the use of models of the software development process which neglect management aspects of the process. The Commonsense Management Model, "Cosmos", however, presents a complete view of this process by treating both its production and management facets. This model calls for a software development project manager to make three essential trade-offs. To make these essential trade-offs, a manager must consider the six principles of dealing with the dynamic complexity found in software development. Methods for dealing with these six principles can be found if the manager takes a three dimensional view of the software development process. Due to the conceptual nature of the Cosmos model, the model must first be grounded with "real world" examples before it can be effectively applied within DoD. To accomplish this, the Patriot software development management method is used to relate the concepts to specific examples for DoD use. By relating the concepts to examples, eight types of tools were found that could be used by future DoD software development projects to gain the benefit of a holistic view of the software development process presented by the Cosmos model. Specific recommendations are contained for inclusion in DoD policy with respect to software development management.
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