I decided to start this blog because my friend had bought me nathanlunn.com as well as some personal free web-space on one of his servers that he has. He is one of the founders and administrators of digiex.net (A good resource for technology). After he bought me the web address he told me I should start a blog but for a while I did not know what to blog about. Then after I recent interview I had decided that I would blog about certain areas that I studied in University. So here I am starting to blog an adventure I hope to be worthwhile, I not only do this for myself but for others to join me on a journey of continuous learning, and maybe get a job, you will be able to find my resume on this website and be able to contact me through the website or by e-mail via the address on the resume.

The latter of this page explains a bit of what I learnt while at University and it also sets the scene for the type of information I will be covering on this blog. There will of course be other posts about other interest I have but they will not be as proliferant as the main subject of my blog.

A recent graduate from the University of Huddersfield most of my studies were concentrated on the business side of software development. I have gained a wide range of skills; this coupled with my knowledge of programming, give me an ideal insight into the Software Development Life-Cycle (SDLC) and will help me communicate with the development team.

I studied large-scale software development; this course entailed project management and an in-depth look into different stage and techniques used within a project’s development. This course also entailed looking at different methodologies and life cycle models, such as Water-Fall model based on linear execution of stages and Spiral models, based on irritative execution of life-cycle stages, performing the stage in multiple cycles of the full life-cycle and Rapid Application Development (RAD), which favors prototyping over planning. The methodologies that were covered are some of the most well known, such as; RUP; Agile; DSDM.

I also studied IT business management, this course was about managing the effect IT has on a business. In this course we studied the strategic implementation of IT system and how to use them in-order to gain advantages over the competition. This module was more business focused, including techniques, such as; SWOT analysis and PESTLE analysis. We also covered issue such as group dynamics and leadership focusing on two types of leaders, leader theory X and leader theory Y. Organisation structure and communication we’re the first topics that we covered in this module. This module taught me how to manage change of IT system in a business environment using strategies and decision making processes to implement change.

I studied IT strategy that involved analysis of problems using the soft and hard system methodologies. Both of these methodologies are aimed at problem analysis, understanding the root cause of a problem to combat it. The idea is that not all problems are solved but merely covered up, thus the problem will occur again. To combat the root cause of a problem the system, which in the context of root cause analysis is anything that has inputs and outputs, is explored using techniques that elaborate on the environment within which the system is located, thus being able to explore all the connection the system has. The inner workings of the process are also explored using diagramming techniques, such as; Multiple-cause diagrams and Boundary Diagrams, among others. A CATWOE analysis and a root definition of the problem, these two components couple together describe the problem area in its simplest from. We also studied digital strategies, justification and evaluation techniques.

I also studied how to elicit user requirements using techniques such as questionnaire and interviews, also using JAD sessions. We also focused on the ability to quantitatively and qualitatively analyse the results from this questionnaires, categorizing answers into group then qualitatively analyzing them. We also used card sorting as a technique to gather user input. Towards term two we studied user persona’s and user scenarios. The main focus of the module was to involve the user in a prototyping activity, using many different methods to involve the user and to be able to effectively analyse their input to be able to make correct judgments on how to proceed with the prototype application which we were developing. The main theme of this module was to involve user within the design process.

I also studied Unified Modelling Language (UML), which is a diagramming standard which enables more than one person to be able view a proposed system and understand it. Using standard diagrams you are able to express systems thoroughly. UML can be used in both analysis and design stages of SLDC. There is also a software development methodology that is built with UML in mind, RUP (Rational Unified Process), created by a division of IBM, this methodology is known for its use of Object Oriented Analysis and Design techniques.

As well as the studies already mentioned I also studied technical side of business application, such as; the development of said systems; the design stage of said system; SQL back-end databases for persistence; C# and VB.net for the logical layers of applications; HTML, CSS and JavaScript for the presentation layer of web application; ASP.net was also something taught, I learned this in two flavors, web forms and MVC (Model-View-Controller).