Standard software packages available in the market are intended for general-purpose applications. However, the users often require custom-tailored software, for performing specific data processing or computational tasks. Application software development is the process of creating such software, which satisfies the end user’s requirements and needs. In simple language it can be said that problem solving using computers is the development of the application software. Following steps needs to be followed for developing the application software. 1. Problem Analysis 2. Algorithm Development and Flowcharting 3. Coding 4. Compilation and Execution 5. Debugging and Testing 6. Program Documentation
2.1 Problem Analysis
Problem analysis is also known as defining problem, which involves the following six tasks. 1. Specifying the objective of the program 2. Specifying the outputs 3. Specifying the input requirements 4. Specifying the processing requirements 5. Evaluating the feasibility of the program 6. Documenting the program analysis At this stage you not only want to determine the input and output requirements but also to get sense of how much everything will cost.
Specifying the objective of the program In order to avoid having the right solution to the wrong problem, we need to be sure we know what the problem is actually is. Making a clear statement of the problem depends of course, on its size and complexity. If the problem is small and does not involve other systems, then we can probably state the problem easily and proceed immediately to the second step, “Program Design”. However, many problems interact with an already existing information system or would require a series of programs and so require very complete analysis, meaning, careful coordination of people, procedures and programs.
Specifying the input requirements Now that you have determined the outputs, you need to define the input and data. To do this, you list the inputs required and the source of the data. For example, in a payroll program, inputs could be employee timesheets and the source of the in put could be either the employees themselves or their supervisors. You need to be sure that the source of the data is consistent so that the date will be available in the future when you need it.
Specifying the processing requirements Now you have to determine the processing requirements for converting the input data to output. If the proposed program is to replace or to supplement an existing one, you will want to make a particularly careful evaluation and identification of the present processing procedures, noting the logic used and any improvements that could be made. If the proposed system is not designed to replace and existing system, you would be well advised to look over another system in use that addresses a similar problem.
Evaluating the feasibility of the program Now you need to see if what you have accomplished so far is enough to make a new program feasible. If the program is intended to replace an existing system, you need to determine id the potential improvements outweigh the costs and possible problems. Documenting the program analysis Before concluding the program analysis stage, it is best to write up a document, stating the results of this first phase. This document should contain statements on the program’s objectives, output specifications, input requirements, processing requirements and feasibility. In other words, the documents should describe everything you have done so far