Metrics-Driven Enterprise Software Development by Subhajit Datta (J.Ross Publishing, 2007)

This is not a book about how enterprise software should be built. This is a book about how enterprise software is built, and how metrics can help make a difference. There are many books harping on the “should”of enterprise software development. The fact that there are many books implies: a. there are many strong feelings about the subject, and b. there is very little consensus. This book illustrates how simple and intuitive techniques can go a long way in meeting customer expectations better, building systems that are easier to evolve and improve, and cause developers less pain and penance.

[Table of Contents] [Reviews]

Table of Contents


Chapter 1 — Introduction

Chapter 2 — Schmoozing with the Ideas


Chapter 3 — Software Engineering and Metrics

Chapter 4 — Key Themes in Software Measurements

Chapter 5 — Taking Your Project the Metrics Way

Chapter 6 — Iterative and Incremental Development: A Brief Background


Chapter 7 —Requirements: The Drivers of Software Development

Chapter 8 — Analysis and Design: On Understanding, Deciding, and Measuring

Chapter 9 —Implementation: It Takes Some Doing

Chapter 10 — Testing: Hunt for a Software Litmus

Chapter 11 — Putting it All Together


Chapter 12 —The Plot Thickens

Chapter 13 — Getting into the Groove

Chapter 14 — Diving at the Deep End

Chapter 15 — Building Time

Chapter 16 — Feel of the World




  • The IT trade literature is full of articles about the skills that IT workers need to learn in order to stay employed and advance up the hierarchical chain. One of the skills that are constantly mentioned is the ability to understand the business side of the organization. One of the best books in this area is "Metrics-Driven Enterprise Software Development" by Subhajit Datta. If you can't measure it, you cannot manage it and that means you have to have measuring tools that are both understandable and applicable. In a field as inherently uncertain as software development, finding such tools is not an easy task; Fortunately, Datta has done much of that work for you.

    ~Charles Ashbacher at Journal of Object Technology

  • I found this book very easy to read and entertaining to boot, and the metrics information extremely valuable. In particular the Exception Estimation Score and Total Testing Score are excellent means of evaluating the breakdown of an application.

    ~Sean Campion at Amazon

  • Metrics-Driven Enterprise Software Development is a comprehensive and eccentric overview of the history and current state of the techniques and practice of measurement in large-scale software projects. This book is not just about a passing fad. Until revolutionary new developments change this field, the book will continue to be valuable to software quality engineering professionals. I have been familiar with this field for twenty years and found the book to be immediately valuable in that it presented some topics and aspects with which I had been less familiar. I was pleased to read this book as I could immediately use the information contained in it for my own work.

    The light-hearted, far-ranging and conversational presentation of the technical materials covered here surprised me. For example, when the author discusses the technical and specialized software-engineering topics of abstraction, elision, and indirection, the author presents a two-page side bar to summarize the ancient Indian epic Mahabharata and its brave and cunning heroes to illustrate how abstraction, elision, and indirection have similar meaning outside of software engineering. This style of treatment is not an exception in this book and the author uses this presentation method throughout.

    Datta's writing style might be most attractive to novices to the technical subject matter who may tire quickly with drier, theoretical, and abstract works on the topic. I would definitely recommend this book to less experienced coworkers who may not have had extensive technical training. The hurried expert who is looking for the most in-depth and efficient coverage of the material may not benefit as much from this choice of treatment.

    In writing this book, Subhajit Datta was evidently committed to creating an easy-to-understand resource. He presents evidence for the points he makes in the form of stories, case studies, and personal experiences. He also provides a fair amount of tables and graphs, but the treatment is light on math, proofs, and derivations. If you are looking for an introductory text to software metrics that is light-hearted, easy to read, and also provides a comprehensive, top-level overview of the history and concepts; then you will want to add this unique book to your library.

    Overall, I greatly enjoyed reading this book, not because of technical details available in this book, but because of the broad coverage and unique presentation of the materials. After all, I do not know of any other book that teaches software engineering and at the same time recounts ancient Indian epics. If I were to rewrite this book, I would not change anything. If I did, the book would lose its unique and eccentric character.

    ~Dr. Tilmann Bruckhaus at Stickyminds.com

  • It is a light and interesting reading. It is thought provoking and humorous in places.

    Unlike other books in software or metrics space, the style of writing is very different and is simplistic in nature. The author has provided practical examples and has used cross-discipline analogies to prove the point. Anyone starting new in software field will certainly find a lot of wisdom rolled into this one book.

    The author has covered a lot of ground by bringing in his experience. Reading thru the book, one could tell that the topic is well researched and the author clearly knows the role of metrics in the software field.

    ~Sandeep Khanna at Amazon

  • Practitioner Datta explains how enterprise software is built, rather than how to build it, and how metrics can make a difference. He presents a set of metrics and artifacts to help software engineers ,make decisions, starting with understanding the basic ideas behind metrics and their applications to software engineering. He describes key themes in software measurements, moving projects into the metrics way, iterative and incremental development, treating requirements as the drivers of software development, performing analysis and design as a way of deciding and measuring, performing implementation, hunting for means of testing and assessment, and taking lessons learned in the initial stages to use the metric way consistently and effectively. Datta offers an extended case study readers can follow to see how all the aspects of metric-based software deign work in a real project. Each section has its own set of references.

    ~Anonymous reviewer at Entrepreneur.com

  • Subhajit produces a very interesting read, a great feat for a dry topic. The book produces new metrics, some of which I will certainly be using. Given the current trend of enterprise roll out of Agile SDLC, this book provides a good resource to define metrics for measurements that will help quantify the value of Agile.

    If there is anything "against" the book that I can think of, is in some cases the use of some uncommon words from the English Language. However that is really is a treat for connoisseurs of the language.

    Whether you are a mid-level manager or a Sr. Executive, if you are in a business where "requirements change" (i.e. your team is building/defining software product), I strongly recommend reading this book and implementing the metrics.

    ~Dr Animikh Sen at Amazon

  • A commendable contribution toward advancing the theory and practice of software engineering. Taking a cut across the software engineering life cycle and brilliantly juxtaposing know-how and show-how, Metrics-Driven Enterprise Software Development is a fine source of guidance on the use of metrics in enterprise software development for developers and managers alike.

    ~Dr Deependra Moitra from the back cover

  • Metrics-Driven Enterprise Software Development is honest, informative and even funny in the right places without diluting the topic. The introduction of this book is beautifully crafted. It made me want to read more a rare accomplishment for a technical book.

    ~Shovon Mukherjee from the back cover