You are previewing Mythical Man-Month, The: Essays on Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition.

Mythical Man-Month, The: Essays on Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition

Cover of Mythical Man-Month, The: Essays on Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition by Frederick P. Brooks Jr. Published by Addison-Wesley Professional
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Chapter 8. Calling the Shot

Practice is the best of all instructors.PUBLILIUSExperience is a dear teacher, but fools will learn at no other.POOR RICHARD'S ALMANAC

How long will a system programming job take? How much effort will be required? How does one estimate?

I have earlier suggested ratios that seem to apply to planning time, coding, component test, and system test. First, one must say that one does not estimate the entire task by estimating the coding portion only and then applying the ratios. The coding is only one-sixth or so of the problem, and errors in its estimate or in the ratios could lead to ridiculous results.

Second, one must say that data for building isolated small programs are not applicable to programming systems products. ...

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