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Software Component Certification
September 2001 (vol. 34 no. 9)
pp. 30-36

Most current process-based methods for certifying software require software publishers to "take oaths concerning which development standards and processes they will use." Jeffrey Voas, among others, has suggested that independent agencies—software certification laboratories (SCLs)—should take on a product certification role. The authors accept that this approach may work well for certain software distribution models, but they also observe that it cannot be applied to all software development.

Third-party SCLs would add unnecessarily to the costs that small developers incur by speculating on the success of a given component. However, supplying complete test sets with components incurs little additional cost because component authors must generate the tests in the first place. Any extra effort adds value to a component because a tested component certainly offers a more marketable commodity.

The authors believe that while SCLs have a place in large or safety-critical software projects, there will always be small commercial-software developments for which failure represents a moderate cost. In such cases, the cost of generating and inspecting tests can be justified.

Citation:
John Morris, Gareth Lee, Kris Parker, Gary A. Bundell, Chiou Peng Lam, "Software Component Certification," Computer, vol. 34, no. 9, pp. 30-36, Sept. 2001, doi:10.1109/2.947086
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