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Title: Developing engineering software -- A fundamental approach

Abstract

The rapid advanced in computer hardware and software coupled with the power industry`s right-sizing have created a unique opportunity for companies to gain a competitive advantage through custom software development. This custom development can standardize repetitive processes, ensure precise data, and enhance personal productivity. However, if the development is not managed properly, the process quickly becomes a budget-consuming project that delivers none of the anticipated rewards. Engineering software often falls into this realm of expensive and non-productive development. Most power engineers are excellent mechanical, electrical, chemical, civil, or plant engineers, but they have little software development experience. They spend much of their time keeping current with their disciplines and do not have the time or resources to keep current with the rapidly changing computer field. As a result, when a company tells the engineering staff to work smarter, not harder, the power plant engineering often finds himself trying to develop a simple program to help with his repetitive tasks. Since he is not familiar with structured software development, he often spends significant effort, and therefore significant funds performing a trial-and-error development approach. This paper suggests a structured process for small to medium engineering software projects that can be handled withmore » either internal or contract developers. This process will basically follow familiar engineering fundamentals: (1) define the problem--determine the program scope; (2) state the assumptions--determine the necessary input and output; (3) develop a solution--write the program; (4) evaluate the results--test and validate the program; (5) state the conclusions--document the features and limitations. Though these steps seem clear, this paper presents some common pitfalls and how to avoid them.« less

Authors:
 [1]
  1. Black and Veatch, Kansas City, MO (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
320888
Report Number(s):
CONF-980426-
Journal ID: ISSN 0097-2126; TRN: IM9910%%78
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: American power conference, Chicago, IL (United States), 14-16 Apr 1998; Other Information: PBD: 1998; Related Information: Is Part Of Proceedings of the American Power Conference: Volume 60-2; McBride, A.E. [ed.]; PB: 588 p.
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
29 ENERGY PLANNING AND POLICY; 99 MATHEMATICS, COMPUTERS, INFORMATION SCIENCE, MANAGEMENT, LAW, MISCELLANEOUS; PROGRAMMING; POWER PLANTS; PROGRAM MANAGEMENT; PRODUCTIVITY

Citation Formats

Wellman, J. Developing engineering software -- A fundamental approach. United States: N. p., 1998. Web.
Wellman, J. Developing engineering software -- A fundamental approach. United States.
Wellman, J. 1998. "Developing engineering software -- A fundamental approach". United States.
@article{osti_320888,
title = {Developing engineering software -- A fundamental approach},
author = {Wellman, J},
abstractNote = {The rapid advanced in computer hardware and software coupled with the power industry`s right-sizing have created a unique opportunity for companies to gain a competitive advantage through custom software development. This custom development can standardize repetitive processes, ensure precise data, and enhance personal productivity. However, if the development is not managed properly, the process quickly becomes a budget-consuming project that delivers none of the anticipated rewards. Engineering software often falls into this realm of expensive and non-productive development. Most power engineers are excellent mechanical, electrical, chemical, civil, or plant engineers, but they have little software development experience. They spend much of their time keeping current with their disciplines and do not have the time or resources to keep current with the rapidly changing computer field. As a result, when a company tells the engineering staff to work smarter, not harder, the power plant engineering often finds himself trying to develop a simple program to help with his repetitive tasks. Since he is not familiar with structured software development, he often spends significant effort, and therefore significant funds performing a trial-and-error development approach. This paper suggests a structured process for small to medium engineering software projects that can be handled with either internal or contract developers. This process will basically follow familiar engineering fundamentals: (1) define the problem--determine the program scope; (2) state the assumptions--determine the necessary input and output; (3) develop a solution--write the program; (4) evaluate the results--test and validate the program; (5) state the conclusions--document the features and limitations. Though these steps seem clear, this paper presents some common pitfalls and how to avoid them.},
doi = {},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/320888}, journal = {},
issn = {0097-2126},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {1998},
month = {12}
}

Conference:
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