Thursday, May 29, 2008

SWEBOK indeed

I suppose it's entirely indicative of the software industry, but I was still saddened when I noticed that the embedded 'title' field of the PDF version of the IEEE Guide to the Software Engineering Body of Knowledge, is "Microsoft Word - Title_page 2004.rtf".

The meta-data shows that the file was created using version FIVE of adobe's own acrobat creation tools, so why doesn't the title meta-data say "Guide to the SWEBOK" or some such? And the author field should be the IEEE Computer Society, not RobertD.

When someone in the IEEE Computer Society, writing a document on how to write software can't even get their tools to work the way the designer wanted them to work, it's a damning testament to the quality of software engineering. I'm sure RobertD isn't an idiot, his software should have helped him make this document, not made the IEEE look like a bunch of morons.

I'm not even going to begin to comment on the fact that the official swebok pdf download page seemingly 'requires' an email address, while the html version is served up anonymously, but you could always just download the pdf directly from the IEEE CSDP education portal.

I've been a member of the IEEE Computer Society and the IEEE for years, and a software developer for even longer. Sadly, this is totally indicative of the mishmash of disciplines that make up software engineering. Computer scientists are keen to point out how every discipline can make use of our science, but frankly software needs other disciplines as well. Marketing, management, communications, you get the idea.

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