A Simulation Model for the Waterfall Software Development Life Cycle

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Author(s) Youssef Bassil
Pages 742-749
Volume 2
Issue 5
Date April, 2012
Keywords Software Engineering, SDLC, Waterfall Model, Computer Simulation, Simphony.NET

Abstract

Software development life cycle or SDLC for short is a methodology for designing, building, and maintaining information and industrial systems. So far, there exist many SDLC models, one of which is the Waterfall model which comprises five phases to be completed sequentially in order to develop a software solution. However, SDLC of software systems has always encountered problems and limitations that resulted in significant budget overruns, late or suspended deliveries, and dissatisfied clients. The major reason for these deficiencies is that project directors are not wisely assigning the required number of workers and resources on the various activities of the SDLC. Consequently, some SDLC phases with insufficient resources may be delayed; while, others with excess resources may be idled, leading to a bottleneck between the arrival and delivery of projects and to a failure in delivering an operational product on time and within budget. This paper proposes a simulation model for the Waterfall development process using the Simphony.NET simulation tool whose role is to assist project managers in determining how to achieve the maximum productivity with the minimum number of expenses, workers, and hours. It helps maximizing the utilization of development processes by keeping all employees and resources busy all the time to keep pace with the arrival of projects and to decrease waste and idle time. As future work, other SDLC models such as spiral and incremental are to be simulated, giving project executives the choice to use a diversity of software development methodologies.

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