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Product Specification

The "product specification" is something we have inherited from the traditional software development process. It is the document by which the product, as it will be designed and developed, is described in detail, and agreed on, before work commences. It has acted as a contractual agreement as much as a guide for development.

However, even in the world of traditional software development, the "product specification" has become problematic. The assumption that software can be document-driven has been the subject of debate since about 1970, when the "waterfall model" was first introduced. The waterfall model stipulates that software development is stepwise; development occurs in successive stages. One stage flows into the next like a waterfall. However, a primary source of difficulty with the model has been its emphasis on full documentation of development prior to design and development.


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