Requirements Gathering Tools

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by BH » Thu, 31 Jul 2003 05:32:47



Are there any good shareware tools for requirements gathering?
Something along the lines of rationals RequisitePro or DOORS.
I'm planning on using excel/word but would be very interested in
looking at any useful shareware.
 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by David Lightston » Thu, 31 Jul 2003 08:32:25



Quote:> Are there any good shareware tools for requirements gathering?
> Something along the lines of rationals RequisitePro or DOORS.
> I'm planning on using excel/word but would be very interested in
> looking at any useful shareware.

Not along the lines of Doors or RequesitePro, but free

REM

http://klendathu.lsi.us.es/REM/REM_english_main.html

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by Phli » Thu, 31 Jul 2003 23:24:36



> Are there any good shareware tools for requirements gathering?
> Something along the lines of rationals RequisitePro or DOORS.
> I'm planning on using excel/word but would be very interested in
> looking at any useful shareware.

http://fitnesse.org

That's a web site where you write your requirements as little web pages that
users can edit thru HTML forms. Each page can contain any number of grids of
data. When you click a "test" button, if you configure a test rig for each
kind of grid, the web site itself will test the app.

This technique expresses requirements as literate self-testing
documentation.

--
  Phlip
    http://www.c2.com/cgi/wiki?TestFirstUserInterfaces

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by BH » Thu, 31 Jul 2003 23:34:34


Are there any good shareware tools for requirements gathering?

Something along the lines of rationals RequisitePro or DOORS.

I'm planning on using excel/word but would be very interested in

looking at any useful shareware.

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by Xavier Pachec » Fri, 01 Aug 2003 10:45:21


Take a look at Active! Focus.  http://www.xapware.com/ActiveFocus.htm.

-- xavier

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by Andrew Gab » Sat, 02 Aug 2003 00:07:59



> Are there any good shareware tools for requirements gathering?
> Something along the lines of rationals RequisitePro or DOORS.
> I'm planning on using excel/word but would be very interested in
> looking at any useful shareware.

Uh, these tools are requirements *management* tools and have limited
value in actually gathering, eliciting, capturing the requirements.
I've generally found that people + Word are the best early tools,
although there are some other (non-RM) tools that others find useful.

I've had serious negative experiences in using these RM tools to
early - they tend to constrain the requirements too much.

Andrew
--
Andrew Gabb

phone: +61 8 8342-1021, fax: +61 8 8269-3280
-----

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by Xavier Pachec » Sat, 02 Aug 2003 00:15:57


Andrew,

Quote:> I've had serious negative experiences in using these RM tools to
> early - they tend to constrain the requirements too much.

Active! Focus' requirements are stored in an html format allowing the user
to define better, readable requirements since things like tables can be take
advantage of.

Requirements are not constraining.  In fact, users have to option to create
(or not) version of the requirement everytime they modify it. This allows
for a historical record of the requirement changes.

Requirements can be organized in a hierarchical basis which is what one gets
when doing outlining in Word.

-- xavier
_____________________________________________
Xapware Technologies Inc.
http://www.xapware.com
Application Lifecycle Management,
   Simply, Effectively, Affordably
        Active! Focus

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by David Lightston » Sat, 02 Aug 2003 00:29:45



Quote:> Andrew,

> > I've had serious negative experiences in using these RM tools to
> > early - they tend to constrain the requirements too much.

> Active! Focus' requirements are stored in an html format allowing the user
> to define better, readable requirements since things like tables can be
take
> advantage of.

There is a meanigful distinction to be made between the activity of
gathering requirements, and conducting the logistics of requirements
management. Without doubt having a HTML format makes examining the gathered
requirements a bit easier, but it does not simplify the task of thinking
about the requirements for purposes of their identification

Quote:

> Requirements are not constraining.  In fact, users have to option to
create
> (or not) version of the requirement everytime they modify it. This allows
> for a historical record of the requirement changes.

The requirements do not exist is isolation, a historical record in and of
itself is not readily meaningful (other than for purposes if identifying the
advocate who wants the change). Tracking the changes to collections of
requirements (they do establish constraints upon and interact with each
other), now that is a cat of a different color

Quote:

> Requirements can be organized in a hierarchical basis which is what one
gets
> when doing outlining in Word.

> -- xavier
> _____________________________________________
> Xapware Technologies Inc.
> http://www.xapware.com
> Application Lifecycle Management,
>    Simply, Effectively, Affordably
>         Active! Focus

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by clifford shell » Sat, 02 Aug 2003 22:04:57



> Are there any good shareware tools for requirements gathering?

> Something along the lines of rationals RequisitePro or DOORS.

> I'm planning on using excel/word but would be very interested in

> looking at any useful shareware.

It may be worth looking around for useful techniques or methods or
protocols that only require excel/word/access type tools before
investing in specialist tools.

...just my two pence worth.

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by Thomas Havemeiste » Fri, 08 Aug 2003 21:36:17


Howdy !

Quote:> value in actually gathering, eliciting, capturing the requirements.
> I've generally found that people + Word are the best early tools,
> although there are some other (non-RM) tools that others find useful.

> I've had serious negative experiences in using these RM tools to
> early - they tend to constrain the requirements too much.

can you be more specific please? I'm currently developing a special
solution for my company and we also had several problems with standard
software. Most annoying thing was, that those software products simply
did not fit in our own requirements engineering process. This is my
general opinion. Because the whole thing mainly depends on the people
not on the tool.

so what is you opinion?

\thomsen

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by David Lightston » Fri, 08 Aug 2003 21:44:20



Quote:> Howdy !

> > value in actually gathering, eliciting, capturing the requirements.
> > I've generally found that people + Word are the best early tools,
> > although there are some other (non-RM) tools that others find useful.

> > I've had serious negative experiences in using these RM tools to
> > early - they tend to constrain the requirements too much.

> can you be more specific please? I'm currently developing a special
> solution for my company and we also had several problems with standard
> software. Most annoying thing was, that those software products simply
> did not fit in our own requirements engineering process. This is my
> general opinion. Because the whole thing mainly depends on the people
> not on the tool.

> so what is you opinion?

My initial impression of Requirement Management tools is that they attempt
to function more so as solution managment tools, rather than logistical
support for configuration identification and management of solutions
candidates. That is they are classical top down solution generation without
backtracking (when the candidate solution proves to be infeasible)

- Show quoted text -

Quote:

> \thomsen

 
 
 

Requirements Gathering Tools

Post by Andrew Gab » Sun, 10 Aug 2003 20:51:57



>>value in actually gathering, eliciting, capturing the requirements.
>>I've generally found that people + Word are the best early tools,
>>although there are some other (non-RM) tools that others find useful.

>>I've had serious negative experiences in using these RM tools to
>>early - they tend to constrain the requirements too much.

> can you be more specific please? I'm currently developing a special
> solution for my company and we also had several problems with standard
> software. Most annoying thing was, that those software products simply
> did not fit in our own requirements engineering process. This is my
> general opinion. Because the whole thing mainly depends on the people
> not on the tool.

I'm not exactly sure what you're trying to say (or asking), so I'll
just say a few things that may be useful.

I've seen project teams using DOORS (Requisite, CORE, RDT, RTM,
etc.) while they're eliciting requirements, ie even before
requirements analysis. This tends to 'harden' the requirements in a
more formal way than in a more general purpose document format like
Word. These tools also tend to be less flexible if you want to
restructure your requirements, as is almost always necessary for a
complex system (even though their vendors will disagree, of course).
It also makes the embryonic requirements less portable (particularly
for review and markup) and restricts the ability for merging and
splitting. (And yes, I *know* these tools can output to Word, HTML,
etc.)

I remember once merging about 16 drafts specs into 3, with serious
editing and review on the way, some 300 pages in 3 days with a team
of five plus numerous operational and tech specialists. Even if all
concerned were experts in the tool, we couldn't have done it in any
of these RM tools within the critical time period.

Having said that, I seriously value using RM tools for medium-large
systems (more than 300 requirements, say) once the initial capture
and analysis is more or less complete. Once you get up to the
1000-10000 range, I think it's essential. They can also be very
useful in assisting in analysing the requirements (by categorisation
etc.) - so I have a bit of a tradeoff here. <g>

I've also seen many 'home grown' systems of varying levels of
effectiveness. When we evaluated the available tools in 96/97, we
intended to include in our evaluation a DB using MS Access with
about 2 weeks work from an experienced analyst/programmer (this
period was chosen because of the cost tradeoff against the cost of
the tools). When we saw what DOORS and Requisite offered then (6
years ago), we dropped the idea because we could not get close with
a custom system without perhaps 6 months effort. Since then the RM
tools have improved significantly.

Andrew
--
Andrew Gabb

phone: +61 8 8342-1021, fax: +61 8 8269-3280
-----