13th International Conference on Software Quality

Software Division of
The American Society for Quality

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Wednesday Concurrent Sessions
Bill Curtis
James Bach
Johanna Rothman
Herb Krasner
Mary Sakry


Bill Curtis - Keynote Speaker

Bill Curtis is co-founder and chief scientist of TeraQuest in Austin, TX, where he works with organizations to increase their software development capability. He is a former director of the Software Process Program in the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon University. Curtis is a co-author of the Capability Maturity Model for Software, and is the principal architect of the People CMM.  Prior to joining the SEI, Curtis directed research on advanced user interface technologies and the software design process at MCC, developed a global software productivity and quality measurement system at ITT’s Programming Technology Center, evaluated software development methods in GE's Space Division, and taught statistics at the University of Washington.

Keynote:  We Need More Cowboy Programmers

‘Cowboy programmers’ have been portrayed by    different factions in the software development    community as heroes or villains. Process aficionados vilified them as undisciplined renegades whose    individualism is a threat to professional engineering.  Those who eschewed the process movement in   software development deified them as the creative artists whose refusal to kow tow to management was the only hope for achieving the miracles needed to produce challenging new systems. Yet there are almost no characterizations of what a ‘cowboy programmer’ is and how they perform their skills. This talk will propose a description of what a ‘cowboy programmer’ is in reality by exploring the lives and working habits of real cowboys. By understanding how real cowboys worked we will come to understand how real ‘cowboy programmers’ perform their craft. This understanding will challenge stereotypes and cherished beliefs about the practitioners of two of our most cherished professions. We will propose a definitive characterization of ‘cowboy programmer.’ The analysis and juxtaposition of these two professions will lead to one inexorable conclusion…we need more ‘cowboy programmers.’

Tutorial:  Using ITIL and CobiT for Improving IT Processes

To help IT organizations understand how to use ITIL and CobiT for improving the performance of their operations.  To enlighten IT organizations on how to use the Process Maturity Framework that underlies the Software CMM and CMMI for introducing best practices and improved discipline into their operations. Topics include:

  • Overview of IT organizations and the standards that affect them. This introduction will briefly describe the typical components of an IT organization and some of the standards used to evaluate them. It will set the stage for the main topics of the tutorial.

  • CobiT provides organizations with a way to determine whether they are exercising proper governance over their IT operations. CobiT consists     of 34 control objectives with greater detail to explain how each one can be objective, can be implemented, and its performance evaluated. The tutorial will present an overview of the issues covered by CobiT.

  • ITIL is a collection of best practices in such areas as service delivery, service support, service security, infrastructure management, and application management. Although ITIL attempts to cover all areas of IT, its guidance is stronger in areas of service delivery and support than in application development. The tutorial will present an overview of the guidance offered by ITIL and the related British Standard 15000 for different IT areas.

  • Recommendations - An approach that integrates ITIL and CobiT into a process maturity framework for implementation in IT organizations will be described. Lessons learned from process improvement in IT organizations will be discussed. The tutorial will conclude with recommendations on how to best integrate these standards for improving IT functions.