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A Software Cost Ontology System for Assisting Estimation of Software Project Effort for Use with Case-Based Reasoning

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4 Author(s)
Hamdan, K. ; United Arab Emirates Univ. ; El Khatib, H. ; Moses, J. ; Smith, P.

Software project cost and effort estimation has become an increasingly important field in the past years due to the overwhelming role of software in today's global market. Several studies have been dedicated to create models in order to estimate the effort of software development. Most of the studies focused on expert judgment, analogy, parametric and algorithmic methods, bottom-up methods, and top-down methods. Nearly all estimating methods need information about how projects have been implemented in the past. However, this information may be of limited use to estimators, as there are uncertainties in the way that various terms, variables and factors are being interpreted. Two projects that may seem similar may indeed be different in a critical way. Moreover, the uncertainty in assessing similarities and differences means that two different analysts could develop significantly different views and effort estimates. The major contributions this paper makes are: 1) identification of an ontology-based cost estimation process framework for defining the semantics of project development data; 2) introduce the culture factor as it affects the software effort estimation; and 3) development of a software effort estimation ontology system (SEEOS) for use in estimating software project cost in a group of organizations. The system establishes a set of common project parameters between different projects and provides a common understanding of project parameters and their semantics. This system enables project managers to elicit software project features that are semantically compatible with new project requirements. The system has been implemented using Java and a relational database management system and data which have been collected from within UAE companies using an online system

Published in:

Innovations in Information Technology, 2006

Date of Conference:

Nov. 2006