Augmented WebHelix: A Practical Process for Web Engineering

Augmented WebHelix: A Practical Process for Web Engineering

Nary Subramanian (University of Texas at Tyler, USA) and George Whitson (University of Texas at Tyler, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-492-7.ch002
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Process is an important element in the success of any information systems development project, especially in academia where typically an undergraduate term project needs to go through the development phases within the space of a semester. Traditionally academic processes have been adapted versions of well-known industrial processes with one major exception—lack of customer feedback in the process. This omission of customer feedback results in students completing “toy” projects without significant real-world experience; efforts to incorporate artificial customer interactions have not been very successful either. It is our opinion that the industry processes cannot be simply copied in academia; what is required is a process that will better equip the students to face real-world challenges. WebHelix has been recently introduced as a practical process for Web engineering that helps students gain valuable real-world experience without sacrificing project and product management phases. In this chapter we propose the Augmented WebHelix process that augments the WebHelix in three ways: provides an option at the end of each slice of the helix to both release the current version and continue to the next slice of development; provides a qualitative evaluation framework, called the project evaluation framework (PEF), that provides a systematic approach for evaluating the status of the project; and the ability to evaluate the project at the end of each phase in a slice of the helix. The first augmentation provides the ability to release and continue which is more practical than the go/no-go approach adopted by WebHelix; the second augmentation, the PEF, allows different factors besides the return-on-investment as in WebHelix to be considered for evaluating the current phase and status of the project, and the third augmentation provides the ability to ensure the project is on track. In this chapter we describe the augmented WebHelix process and demonstrate its applicability to both academia and industry with examples.

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