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The objective of this session is to introduce the subject of software engineering. When you have read this session you will understand what software engineering is and why it is important, know the answers to key questions which provide an introduction to software engineering, understand ethical and professional issues which are important for software engineers.


Virtually all countries now depend on complex computer-based systems. More and more products incorporate computers and controlling software in some form. The software in these systems represents a large and increasing proportion of the total system costs. Therefore, producing software in a cost-effective way is essential for the functioning of national and international economies.

Software engineering is an engineering discipline whose goal is the cost-effective development of software systems. Software is abstract and intangible. It is not constrained by materials, governed by physical laws or by manufacturing processes. In some ways, this simplifies software engineering as there are no physical limitations on the potential of software. In other ways, however, this lack of natural constraints means that software can easily become extremely complex and hence very difficult to understand.

Software engineering is still a relatively young discipline. The notion of ‘software engineering’ was first proposed in 1968 at a conference held to discuss what was then called the ‘software crisis’. This software crisis resulted directly from the introduction of powerful, third generation computer hardware. Their power made hitherto unrealisable computer applications a feasible proposition. The resulting software was orders of magnitude larger and more complex than previous software systems.

Early experience in building these systems showed that an informal approach to software development was not good enough. Major projects were sometimes years late. They cost much more than originally predicted, were unreliable, difficult to maintain and performed poorly. Software development was in crisis. Hardware costs were tumbling whilst software costs were rising rapidly. New techniques and methods were needed to control the complexity inherent in large software systems.

These techniques have become part of software engineering and are now widely although not universally used. However, there are still problems in producing complex software which meets user expectations, is delivered on time and to budget. Many software projects still have problems and this has led to some commentators (Pressman, 1997) suggesting that software engineering is in a state of chronic affliction.

As our ability to produce software has increased so too has the complexity of the software systems required. New technologies resulting from the convergence of computers and communication systems place new demands on software engineers. For this reason and because many companies do not apply software engineering techniques effectively, we still have problems. Things are not as bad as the doomsayers suggest but there is clearly room for improvement.

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Object Oriented Programming Test 1
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Sample Questions from the Object Oriented Programming Test 1 Test

Question: API Stands for?


Applet Programming Introduction

Active Programming Interface

Anti Primitive Introduction

Application Programming Interface

Question: What is true for the following? Rectangle myRectangle = new Rectangle( --,//,&&,**); (1) (2) (3)


1- Calling the object name 2-Assigning the object a name 3- Arguements include these in the same order: x,y,z,Height

1- Calling the class name 2-Assigning the object a name 3- Arguements include these in the same order: x,y,z,Height

1- Calling the class name 2-Assigning the object a name 3- Arguements include these in the same order: x,y,Width,Height

1- Calling the object name 2-Assigning the object a name 3- Arguements include these in the same order: x,y,Width,Height

Question: How many arguements does the following Method have? String replace(String target, String replacement)






Question: Is it legal to call river.println()?


Yes, river is in the same class as System.out

Yes, river is in the same object as System.out

No, river is not in the same class as System.out

No, river is not in the same object as System.out

Question: What symbol(s) allows for assignment of variables?






Question: Which of the following variable names are INVALID?





my Distance


Question: A method for the String class may include the following:






Question: How does one create a new frame object?


JFrame frameName = new JFrame();

Frame frameName= new Frame();

JFrame frameName = new Frame();

frame FrameName()= new frame();

Question: Which of the following are true for variables?


Variables can contain all different types of numbers/symbols and letters. Example: int my^Num1;

Variables can start with numbers: ex) int 2Num;

Variables can start with underscores: ex) int _newNum;

Variable names can only contain numbers,underscores and letters for every character other than the first one. ex) int myNum_new;

Variable names, by convention, start with lowercase. ex) int myNum;

Question: How can one turn large lines of code into comments?


// . . Statements . //

/* . . Statements . /*

/* . . Statements . */

/* . . Statements . /*

Question: What is true for the following code? String river="Mississippi"; river=river.replace("issipp" , "our"); System.out.println(river);


The name of the variable is Mississippi

.replace is an object for the the String Class

.println is a class for the System.out object

The output will be Missouri

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Edgar Delgado
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