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Software by Design: Shaping Technology and The Workplace 1st Edition

ISBN-13: 978-0195083408
ISBN-10: 0195083407
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Editorial Reviews


"I can praise the book on several dimensions. I liked their conceptual framework, which is the most comprehensive that I have seen in relating social and technological influences on design choices. I also admired the thoroughness with which the authors' drew from existing literature in developing their framework as well as in analyzing the case studies from three industries. Readers who are interested specifically in understanding organizational and managerial issues related to software design and development will find the book extremely useful. The authors' conceptual framework is sufficiently comprehensive to appeal to scholars and practitioners with interests in other types of technology than software." --Gerald I. Susman, Robert and Judith Klein Professor of Management, The Pennsylvania State University

"Software by Design is a pathbreaking study of the dynamics of software application development. Salzman and Rosenthal show how professionals' values rather than technical necessities alone play key roles in shaping software design. This book should be read by every computer specialist who develops computer applications and by every manager who acquires them." --Rob Kling, University of California, Irvine

"Software by Design is an important addition to the literature on human-computer interaction. By clearly presenting and carefully analyzing actual cases, it gives students and practitioners insights into larger issues of system design that all too often get lost in the fascination over "interface" issues. It will be a cornerstone document in the establishment of the emerging profession of software design which brings to the software world the perspective of design as a situated human-centered endeavor."

"Self-contained, non-comprehensive treatment by people interested in management and in the interactions of science with technology....Neatly presents the considerations and balances most prominent in software compared to other areas." --SCS Simulator Quarterly

"Excellent reference. Recommended." --Choice

"Salzman and Rosenthal's contribution is in presenting an integrated view of interactions between the forces of the marketplace, where economics and marketing prevail, and the forces of the workplace, where social and technical issues and user desires prevail....Well worth a careful reading....Attention to the issues in this book might even lead to better functioning of the marketplace, to the benefit of all parties." --Computing Reviews

From the Back Cover

As computers become more and more integral to business and other organizational operations around the world, software design must increasingly meet the social demands of the workplace. This book provides an informative, cogent examination of how various social factors - such as organizational structure, workplace relations, and market conditions - together shape software developers' technical design decisions. Through a survey of major software companies and in-depth case studies of the banking, hospital, and equipment field service industries, the authors identify factors that influence specific design strategies and examine the significant consequences that engineering decisions have on users' work, workplace quality of life, and opportunities for autonomy and skill development. The book concludes with a chapter devoted to exploring how a progressive design approach can improve both the performance and working conditions of an organization. By providing an important empirical study of the social construction of technology, the authors offer an insightful understanding of the challenges inherent in effective software design. The book will appeal to professionals and students in software design, information systems management, computer science, and the sociology of work and technology.

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