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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

What are Formal Technical Reviews (FTR)? What is the aim and guidelines for formal technical reviews?

When tasks are performed in software process, the result is a work product. These results contribute to the development of quality software.
A formal technical review (FTR) is a software quality assurance activity performed by software engineers with the following objectives:
- uncover errors in function, logic or implementation of the software.
- verify that the software meets its requirements.
- ensure that the software has been developed according to the standards.
- achieve uniform software.
- make projects manageable.

Each formal technical review is conducted as a meeting and is considered successful only if it is properly planned, controlled and attended.
The purpose of formal technical review serves as a training ground for junior engineers and to promote backup and continuity.
Constraints of formal technical review meeting’s include 3-5 people involvement, advanced preparation not more than 2 hours for each person, the duration of the review meeting should be less than 2 hours and focus on a specific part of a software product.

There are few guidelines while conducting formal technical reviews. They are:
- Work product should be reviewed and not the developer.
- Make a practice to write down notes while conducting reviews.
- Agenda should be planned.
- Minimize the debate and discussions.
- Keep the number of participants to a minimum and insist on preparing for the review.
- The defect areas should be pointed but no solution should be provided.
- A checklist that is to be reviewed is provided.
- Schedule the reviews as part of the software process and ensure that resources are provided for each reviewer
- Check the effectiveness of review.

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