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Documenting design decisions: A framework and its evaluation in the ambient intelligence domain

: Falessi, D.; Becker, M.

Fulltext urn:nbn:de:0011-n-394719 (813 KByte PDF)
MD5 Fingerprint: 9d0b2327bf90c360f74be0b5063ee034
Created on: 03.05.2006

Kaiserslautern, 2006, VII, 34 pp. : Ill., Lit.
IESE-Report, 050.06/E
Reportnr.: 050.06/E
Report, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IESE ()
BelAmI; design rationales; case study; design; software development

Design decisions crucially influence the success of every software development project. Consequently, a considerable amount of time in the development activities is usually spent to discuss design decisions and their possible outcomes. While the results of the design decisions are often documented quite well, the situation is usually different for the decision making processes themselves. Usually, little or no effort is spent to track the decision process and its findings, although this could be relevant and helpful information for future decisions in related projects.
This report deals with the question, how to document design decisions in software development projects in general and within the demonstrator development in the BelAmi project in special. Usually design decisions have to consider the interests of various stakeholders. This holds especially in the Ambient Intelligence domain. Consequently, a design documentation activity focusing on the avoidance of misunderstandings and shortcomings in the stakeholders' intercommunication is, in our context, mandatory.
The aim of the presented work in this report is to provide a framework for documenting design decisions in a sound way and to analyze recurring patterns in decision making, i.e. importance, location, and conflicts of quality attributes.