You are previewing Code Complete, Second Edition.

Code Complete, Second Edition

Cover of Code Complete, Second Edition by Steve McConnell Published by Microsoft Press

Integration Frequency—Phased or Incremental?

Programs are integrated by means of either the phased or the incremental approach.

Phased Integration

Until a few years ago, phased integration was the norm. It follows these well-defined steps, or phases:

  1. Design, code, test, and debug each class. This step is called "unit development."

  2. Combine the classes into one whopping-big system ("system integration").

  3. Test and debug the whole system. This is called "system dis-integration." (Thanks to Meilir Page-Jones for this witty observation.)

One problem with phased integration is that when the classes in a system are put together for the first time, new problems inevitably surface and the causes of the problems could be anywhere. Since you have a large number ...

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