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Issue No. 05 - Sept.-Oct. (2012 vol. 38)
ISSN: 0098-5589
pp: 1027-1039
Frank Zickert , Goethe University Frankfurt, Frankfurt
Roman Beck , Goethe University Frankfurt, Frankfurt
Determining how to cope with existing systems is an important issue for information systems development (ISD). In this paper, we investigate how well different ISD patterns are suited for coping with existing systems. Empirical results, gathered from three software development projects undertaken by a financial institution, suggest propositions regarding how ISD patterns and existing systems affect the characteristics of objective ISD complexity, which in turn determine overall experienced complexity. Existing systems increase complexity due to conflicting interdependencies, but ISD patterns that reduce this complexity, such as those that employ bottom-up or concurrent consideration patterns, are best suited for coping with existing systems. In contrast, top-down and iterative focusing patterns, as classically used in new development, increase the complexity associated with conflicting interdependency, which makes them particularly unsuited for coping with existing systems in ISD.
Complexity theory, Information systems, Maintenance engineering, Software maintenance, File systems, Programming, Servers, software engineering process, Complexity measures, improvements, software maintenance

R. Beck and F. Zickert, "Coping with Existing Systems in Information Systems Development," in IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, vol. 38, no. , pp. 1027-1039, 2012.
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