use case

Use Case best practice: Test your Use Cases with real data

Quite often when I’m asked to review a UML “Use Case” that someone else has written, I ask “Have you tested your Use Case with real data?” Sadly, the answer is usually “no.”

I don’t know why people don’t do this, but they don’t, and it seems like a very logical thing — essentially a unit test for Use Cases.

UML Use Case quality: Questions to ask yourself when writing a Use Case

Table of Contents1 - Major points of my "User Logs In" Use Case2 - The "User Logs In" user story3 - Are my statements testable?4 - What I left out5 - User Stories, Use Cases, and Requirements6 - Back to the questions

I was just updating my Example UML Use Case diagram article and it occurred to me that if you're a Business Analyst, there are a couple of questions you can ask yourself as you write a Use Case (or User Story) that will help improve the quality of your writing. Two questions specifically come to mind:

  • What are the main points of this use case? (Which might also be phrased, "What points about this business process do I need to make sure everyone really agrees about?")
  • Are the statements I've written testable?

The best UML “Use Case” definition I know

Every time I read an article or book about UML “Use Cases” I cringe a little bit. Every author says something like “Jacobson left the definition of a Use Case too open,” and then they try to work through some elaborate scheme of what a Use Case means to them. IMHO, the best use case definition was created in the early 1980s, long before Jacobson mentioned the term.

Business Analyst: How to write accurate software requirements

When you're working as a business analyst, the words you write are what you get paid for. Just like the author of a book, when you write software requirements, you shouldn't be loose with the words you write.

While working on a recent project, I started thinking about software requirements again, and was reminded how vague a requirement can be, even when you think it's well written. What made me think about this today was running across this performance requirement I found in an a requirements specification:

UML Use Case examples

Summary: A collection of UML Use Case examples (software requirements examples), based on a "real world" project.

I've been taking a little time lately to document a lot of what I know about UML Use Cases, and today I thought I'd take a few moments to link up to Use Cases I wrote for a client back in 2004. The client graciously allowed me to reprint these on this website, as long as I removed their name from all the documentation.

A Use Case example of yesterday's User Story

In my Use Case quality article yesterday I wrote about a "User Story" for a fictional "User Logs In" requirement. To complete that article, I promised to write a Use Case version of that same user story. Here then is that sample "User Logs In" Use Case, which you can compare to yesterday's User Story.

A simple example UML Use Case diagram

UML Use Case FAQ: Can you share an example of a Use Case diagram?

As I've been preparing to let other writers write on the devdaily.com website, I started to think about what different things (processes) an author would need to do on the website. As I thought about this, I started realizing that I was once again thinking like a business analyst, and then I thought I'd create an example UML Use Case diagram to show these processes.

A free "real world" software requirements specification

Last night I ran across a software requirements specification that I meant to share out here a long time ago, but unfortunately I never did. I created this software requirements specification for one of my customers, and they kindly gave me permission to publish this document out here (after I took out a few things specific to their business).