"For more than 50 years software has been a troublesome discipline. Software's problems are numerous and include cancelations, litigation, cost overruns, schedule overruns, high maintenance costs, and low levels of user satisfaction. The problems with software occur more often than not. My company's research indicates that more than half of large software projects will encounter some kind of delay, overrun, or failure to perform when deployed. But software does not have to be as troublesome as it has been. Some complex software projects do achieve their delivery schedules and cost targets, and behave properly when used. Throughout my career in software I've been interested in what distinguishes successful software projects from failures and disasters. It happens that the main factors leading to software success are easily identified when side-by-side comparisons of similar projects are performed, where one set was successful and the other set was troublesome. The successful software projects achieve excellence in software quality control, and they are able to do this because of excellence in software quality measurements. Although it might be thought that excellent software quality control is expensive, it turns out to yield a very positive return on investment. When canceled software projects and disasters are studied by means of "autopsies," they all have similar patterns: Early phases of troubled projects are handled carelessly without adequate requirements analysis or design reviews. After rushing through the early phases and seeming to be ahead of schedule, problems begin to mount during coding and testing. When testing begins in earnest, serious problems are detected so that schedules and cost targets cannot be achieved. Indeed, some software projects have so many serious problems—termed bugs or defects—that they are canceled without completion. By contrast, successful projects are more thorough at the start. The requirements are carefully analyzed and the designs are formally inspected. This takes some time and adds upfront costs, but once coding and testing begin, the value of careful quality control allows the projects to move rapidly to a successful conclusion. Stephen Kan and I both learned the importance of software quality control and good software quality metrics at IBM. Even though Stephen and I worked in different IBM labs during different decades, we have some common viewpoints. We have both been convinced by empirical evidence that without excellent software quality control, large system development is hazardous and likely to fail. We also both know that effective software quality control is built on a foundation of careful measurements using accurate metrics."

A free metrics plugin for eclipse is also available on sourceforge "Provide metrics calculation and dependency analyzer plugin for the Eclipse platform. Measure various metrics with average and standard deviation and detect cycles in package and type dependencies and graph them." http://sourceforge.net/projects/metrics/

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