Engineering Practices

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Better software through proven practices. Improve the ability for practitioners to build quality software solutions faster and easier. Build a community around engineering practices to help foster emerging software engineering practices, as well as make good software engineer practices more accessable to everyday practice.


Engineering Practices Frame

Practices | Activities | Artifacts
Planning Practices | Planning Activities | Planning Artifacts |
Requirements Practices | Requirements Activities | Requirements Artifacts |
Arch And Design Practices | Arch And Design Activities | Arch And Design Artifacts |
Development Practices | Development Activities | Development Artifacts |
Testing Practices | Testing Activities | Testing Artifacts |
Deployment Practices | Deployment Activities | Deployment Artifacts |
Maintenance Practices | Maintenance Activities | Maintenance Artifacts |
Security Engineering Practices | Security Engineering Activities | Security Engineering Artifacts |
Performance Practices | Performance Activities | Performance Artifacts |
Flexibility Practices | Flexibility Activities | Flexibility Artifacts |


  • Provide customer guidance for software engineering practices and techniques
  • Refine and enhance successful software practices
  • Reduce mistakes and improve software quality
  • Bake quality attributes (security, performance, … etc.) into the life cycle
  • Build a community around best software development practices
  • Increase precision around context


Modular, task based guidance for life cycle activities and artifacts.

* Information Model * Practices * How Tos * Templates * Samples * Walkthroughs * Checklists * Patterns * Community * Tools integration * Product Feedback


  • Organize best practices using knowledge areas.
  • Build a library of “pluggable”, modular software engineering techniques
  • Identify practices that improve software quality and engineering efficiency
  • Identify and reduce pitfalls within software engineering activities
  • Prioritize software engineering activities based on results in practice

Key Terms

  • Knowledge Areas. Organizing scheme that brings together common practices, activities, techniques.
  • How Tos. Step-by-step, task-based guidance.
  • Templates. Standardized template to help execute the activity/steps. Cross-discipline communication tool.
  • Samples. Best practice samples of what good looks like.
  • Walkthroughs. Narrative hand-holding through the activity
  • Checklists.
  • Activity Patterns.
  • Artifact Patterns.

Key Concepts

  • Build a knowledge base of software engineering techniques
    • Focus on practices not process
    • Favor the practitioner and results over theory
    • Leverage industry subject matter experts
  • Organize guidance using Knowledge Areas
    • Key software engineering activities (development, testing … etc.)
    • Quality attributes (performance, security, flexibility … etc.)
  • Turn quality attributes into actionable activities and techniques
    • Break quality attributes down into actionable categories
    • Identify and refine techniques that improve the success
  • Build a library of “pluggable”, modular practices
    • Favor modular content types over monolithic
  • Incremental Adoption of Practices and Techniques
    • Can use them together, but adopt incrementally (“Better Together”)
    • Frame to set the context
  • Increase precision around context
    • Archetypes (Web, Desktop, Web Service … etc.)
    • Scenarios (Intranet, Internet … etc.)
  • Tools integration
    • Pluggable in MSF/VS .NET/Team Tools/MSF
    • Richest experience with MSF
  • Create a site for sharing best software engineering practices
    • Practitioner-to-Practitioner assistance
    • Community submissions
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