What is the software development lifecycle? Introduction to SDLC

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Programming software or an application can sometimes cause stress, especially when it comes to coding different parts of a large project. Therefore, having a system that allows you to gradually complete the development process without feeling overwhelmed is necessary to create high-quality software.

This is exactly what SDLC is a system of activities that includes several stages or stages, and when performed ensures that you understand the task well, while eliminating errors as much as possible.

In this article, we will delve into these stages and what each one includes.

Business analysis or opening phase

First, you need to plan. There is not too much planning, and if at this stage you miss at least one small detail, you will have to reconsider the whole project.

Several things need to be done at the analysis stage. Start with a brainstorming session and come up with a few ideas on which to base your project. For example, if you are developing a new hotel reservation system, you may want to consider linking hotel reservations to restaurant reservations – one of many possibilities.

Make sure the ideas you come up with meet the requirements of your client (or your own) so that you stick to the original task by being creative and creating innovative ideas.

It’s also important to keep in mind the available deadlines, costs, and resources so that as a result you don’t develop what your client’s computer system isn’t able to handle, what they can’t afford, or what takes a ridiculously long time to program.

In general, at this stage you will be able to better understand what the final piece of software should look like, because this is what your work is based on.

At this point in SDLC you should have all the information you need to briefly start software development and even to create a basic prototype – at the very least, you should be able to build a more detailed breakdown of the project than you had before. It takes time to make a short prototype so you and your customers can see your ideas in action and gather feedback.

Now, having worked out the development project in as much detail as possible, divide it into smaller tasks. If you’re working with a development team, now is also a good time to distribute the tasks accordingly so that everyone is familiar with what role they will take on and start preparing.

Design

This phase is relatively simple compared to other SDLC stages and usually involves a systems analyst and a lead developer. They discuss the system on which the software is going to be installed, any limitations that the system has and that relate to the functionality of the software, and make sure that the proposed piece of software will not face serious problems once it is implemented.

After the system analysis phase, a more sophisticated prototype can be created so that all participants can better understand what the final product will look like, and consider any problems that may arise.

Before moving on to the next stage, which is programming, the lead developer will validate all established plans and ensure customer needs are met before embarking on basic development.

Programming

At this stage, you can not discuss much, except that you have time to get started! Post everything you have planned, start programming and develop software that suits you.

Keep in mind that even though you’ve gathered all the necessary information before, if you’re unsure of any job requirements, contact your client – don’t be ashamed to find out the uncertainties and they won’t criticize you for it is.

Testing

It is important to test the coded program. It’s not as easy as running a program using each of the functions once and then triggering its output – you need to conduct thorough testing between multiple parties using multiple testing methods.

  • Here are some things to keep in mind during the testing phase without complicating things.

  • When you interact with a program or enter data (input), are you given the result you expect?

  • Is it possible to easily identify each of the program’s features and do they function properly?

  • Does the program fulfill its original goal?

  • Does the program work effectively and efficiently use computer system resources?

  • Are there any improvements you can make?

After over-testing the program to make sure there is nothing wrong with it, you are ready to implement it.

However, if you find that there are problems or that improvements can be made, be sure to fix them before continuing. Remember to take note of the errors you have encountered, as well as how to correct them – this is useful in case you have any related errors in the future.

Implementation

Finally, it’s time to implement the software in the environment for which it is intended. This is the final stage of SDLC and includes setting up the software on the designated computer system, any other systems on which it will be needed, and going through the client how to use it.

You should also think about compiling a basic user guide, depending on the complexity of your program, so that they have a deep understanding and do not need to contact you every time they have a question or request. The distribution of the user manual will also facilitate the explanation of the software to large groups of people.

What’s next?

Now that the software is created from scratch and installed and configured as it should be, you can lift your legs and relax.

Although this is not an official stage, once you have implemented the software you have programmed, you should be ready for maintenance. Typically, maintenance refers to any changes that a customer wants to make to the software, any updates, or the correction of any errors that occur.

Some software development projects require maintenance and others do not, so this is not considered an SDLC stage.

To conclude …

This may seem like an excessive model of software development, although by following SDLC, software developers and engineers can make sure they don’t make stupid (but vital) mistakes and, as a result, create software that exceeds customer expectations.

Placing this type of process ensures that you are on the right track, and given that you will be constantly reviewing notes made during the planning phase, you will undoubtedly prevent the uncertainty that can wreak havoc and cause you to start from scratch.

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