OOPSLA 06 Workshop: Escaped from the Lab: Software Practices in
Workshop date: Monday
October 23, 8:30am-5:00pm
Location: OOPSLA '06
Conference in Portland, Oregon
This is the website for the proposed OOPSLA workshop on
software product development issues.
What are some of the common practices for taking new ideas and
converting them into products?
An important dynamic in large organizations: one part of the
organization over-commits (promises the earth, moon, and stars), and
another part of the organization is forced to deliver. The extravagant
promise of the Powerpoint presentation is converted into the trail of
tears of the Gantt chart.
The grandiose project was originally supposed to be feasible. There
were some small technology trials that proved out the basic ideas for
low-volume transaction rates and simplified user interfaces. The
product was supposed to be delivered in record time because of high
rates of software reuse. So what went wrong?
One thing that compounds this effect: only a small fraction of the
people working on software are actually in firms that consider
themselves to be in the software business. This may lead a team to make
inadequate choices of practices and approaches for the process of
turning new ideas into products.
This workshop explored the intersection of object oriented
technology, high reliability and performance requirements, large
organizations, and conflicts in the software development process. Some
questions we considered include:
The workshop was an exploration of both traditional and modern
approaches to creating reliable software and improving the reliability
of existing software.
- Prototyping: When can a prototype be “scaled up” to production?
When is it just an experiment to be thrown away?
- Reusability: How can you make an honest assessment of the
potential reusability of a module or subsystem?
- Reliability and Availability: How do the reliability and
availability requirements get captured and how do they become action
items in the product plan?
- Frameworks: When is a framework part of the solution, and when
does it become part of the problem?
- Contracting and Outsourcing: Who assumes the risk when there are
problems with the product development schedule, gaps in the feature
set, stability issues in the reusable components, and shortcomings in
the product’s usability?
- Decision making: Is it possible to define the key issues early in
the project lifecycle? What kinds of development processes and
management processes are most useful for highlighting the gaps?
Some subjects that were considered in the course of this workshop:
- Organizing the product development: converting from viewgraphs
and prototypes to real requirements, interface specs, scenarios, and
- The role of components and frameworks in bridging the gap between
research ideas and products
- Reliability issues
- Case studies in management of prototypes versus products
interested in joining the dialog on the issues of bringing research
into practice? Here is
how you can join the workshop:
- Contact one of
the workshop organizers listed below.
- Prepare a
one-page "position paper" -- containing your ideas, questions, and
experiences. Send your position paper to mancl - AT -
lucent.com. Position papers
are due by September 1, 2006.
receive notification of your acceptance into the workshop by September
- The position papers were used as a starting
point for planning the workshop's activities.
- Your position paper might explain some of your personal
experiences (positive and/or negative) with transfering research ideas
- Or, you might also describe some specific techniques you have
tried to improve your technology transfer (especially if they are
related to OO
- Note: If you are
coming from outside the US, and you need
more time to obtain a visa, please let us know. We can arrange to
make a decision on your position paper early.
The workshop was organized as a
set of interactive brainstorming and discussion sessions. The
workshop participants prepared a poster that was presented at the
OOPSLA poster session on Monday afternoon.
- Dennis Mancl (mancl - AT - lucent.com)
- Bill Opdyke (opdyke - AT - acm.org)
- Greg Utas (greg - AT - pentennea.com)
- Steve Fraser (sdfraser - AT - acm.org)
- Ricardo Lopez (rjlopez - AT - qualcomm.com)
The following links are the "position papers" that were written by some
of the workshop participants:
Last modified: October 25, 2006