Automizing the Software Development

I would thank kumaran <>, a TCSer for exploring such a good software.

From his mail!!!

What would be your response if we told you that sometime in the future you won’t need a software engineer to develop a programme? You’d laugh, right?

Well, wipe that smile because India’s largest software firm, the $2.2 billion Tata Consultancy Services, has implemented an intelligent tool in-house that takes care of a programmer `s 80 per cent routine work — that is, it has automated the process — and guides him, virtually, on how to do the rest of it better and faster.

If this is the long-term objective of TCS — which has 43,000 employees — in the short-term it makes business sense to get into the “micro-level outsourcing” and deliver work to customers faster and at a lower cost. “It is not about feasibility, but about time and speed to market,” said executive director of Pune-based Tata Research Development and Design Centre Mathai Joseph, whose 30-member team worked for three-and-a-half months to design the tool.

Having already done a test-run of the software tool — MAP-WayPointer — in a few projects, TCS is gearing up for the long haul ahead. “There has been a tremendous improvement not only on time and cost saving, but also in quality. We have test-piloted it in a few projects (insurance and transportation) and major software delivery centres in Bangalore and Delhi. It standardises a lot of routine stuff,” said TCS Vice-President K Ananth Krishnan.

In short, it helps the programmer to concentrate on his core competency and leave mundane chores in the hands of the tool. “The requirements are changing all the time. And with this tool, we
intend to make the processes faster, cheaper, better and far less error-prone,” Krishnan said.

Importantly, this innovation comes out of India — developed at TRDDC in collaboration with Jaczone, a Swedish company, which helps IT firms to implement cost-effective development practices.

Here to launch MAP-WayPointer, Dr Ivar Jacobson, guru of object-oriented software engineering, admitted he was finding it difficult to convince companies to adopt this new “active software”
technology, even in the US — “it is difficult to explain to the blind what it is to see”.

With attrition rates hitting the roof in IT — at 25 per cent-30 per cent — who wouldn’t like a tool to take care of the routine work, thus reducing the work force? Analysts think this innovation was driven by serious issues plaguing the industry like high attrition
and pressure on margins. But the product’s main test lies in its ability to scale up and handle large volumes. Krishnan admitted as much: “First, the target is to reach the market earlier than our competitors. The next cycle is to see whether this tool can handle the higher volumes being executed by TCS.”

With outsourcing going mainstream, high-end is being targetted by Indian majors. As Mathai puts it: “The high-end work is coming to Indian companies. The goal is to offer a much better software at lower prices… and that’s where the tool will be useful. It’s a small step, but in the right direction.”



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