Keeping a record of the documents and materials in software engineering covers all information that deals with a certain software development plan and uses. Documentation is an essential process for all software development products, regardless of whether they are created by a small or large company. Various kinds of materials and documents are designed and created during the entire life cycle of software development. Documenting the process of software development allows the company to explain its functionalities, integrate relevant information, and enable a discussion that addresses significant questions.
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1. Software Documentation Template
2. Sample Software Documentation Template
3. System & Network Documentation
4. Software Documentation and Maintenance
5. Simple Software Documentation
6. Software System Documentation
7. Software Development Documentation
8. Sample Software Architecture Documentation
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11. Software Development Document Template
What is a Software Documentation?
Software documentation is a part of the software development plan and process that contains details and information that describes the software product to individuals who created, launched, and utilized them. This documentation also includes technical manuals and online materials which refer to the source information of the product that was discussed in its design or process documentation, code comments, white papers, and session notes.
How to Create Software Documentation
Software documentation serves as a guide that software development teams, testers, and users need to achieve each of their goals, may it be personal or business goals. This process includes technical writing expertise and aims to simplify the communication between all entities involved with the product software. It represents the process that software developers performed to create the software and the method that IT employees and users must follow to ensure its successful deployment and usage.
Step 1: Determine the Purpose and Target Audience of the Documentation
Start by understanding the reason why you are creating the software documentation. You can open a blank document in your word processor and type the document’s purpose as its title. You also have to highlight the audience of your documentation. Create personas of the type of individuals who will read your document.
Step 2: List Down Essential Questions and Create an Outline
After you have determined the goals and target audience of your document, list down the questions you are anticipating your readers to ask. This will help you collect ideas, establish the structure of your document, and provide relevant information. Then, create the documentation outline based on your goals.
Step 3: Collect the Necessary Information
If you are not familiar with your subject, you might need to perform heavy research to collect and validate your information. This includes interviews with professionals or users, communicating with stakeholders, reading through existing records, and surfing the internet.
Step 4: Write the Draft and Finalize
After your research, you can now create your first draft. As you write your draft, make sure to keep referring to your goals so your audience can stay on track. Once you are satisfied, finalize your draft by checking for any technical, grammatical, and contextual mistakes.
What is included in the software documentation outline?
An outline for software documentation includes its title and audience, executive summary, problem statement and scope of work, goals, requirements for the readers if you have any, instructions, steps, solutions, and findings, a timeline, and reference list.
What are the categories of software documentation?
Software documentation is split into task categories which are evaluating, planning, setting up or installing, customizing, administering, using, and maintaining.
What are the types of software documentation?
The different types of software documentation are internal software documentation which includes administrative documentation and developer documentation and external software documentation which includes end-user documentation, enterprise user documentation, and just-in-time documentation.
Documentation of software development must cover information on interactive user experience, information architecture, and an understanding of its target audience. Software documentation aims to resolve problems encountered by developers during the development process, enable users to understand the software or product, and help customers and support team to determine their required information. Software documentation has six steps which are planning, analysis, design, implementation, testing, and maintenance.
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