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Estimating Software Costs by Capers Jones

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Chapter 5Sources of Error in Software Cost Estimation

One of the first questions software project managers ask is how accurate the software cost-estimating tools are. That question is surprisingly difficult to answer, since accuracy can be judged only in the context of precisely measured software projects. Most companies, universities, and government agencies do not have historical data that is precise enough to be used to judge the relative accuracy of software cost-estimation tools. Surprisingly, the accuracy of some software cost-estimating tools is much higher than the accuracy of historical data!

Indeed, as determined by performing assessment and benchmark studies, the historical cost data for an average software project is only about ...

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