Chapter 15. Considering the Need for Reports

Reports help document the status of your application. It would seem as if a note in the code file or a simple discussion in the hallway would be enough to get the ball rolling, but a formal process of accepting input information about applications really is the only way to ensure that everyone understands the application status. Many people associate reports of this sort with negative issues, such as bugs. However, you can use reports for all sorts of needs. For example, a positive report may indicate that users really do like a new feature based on usage statistics. A report like this gives everyone a pat on the back without having to worry about breaking one’s own hand to do it.

You generally create internal reports for the application as a whole, but you can use reports to track individual application features as well. For that matter, you might not even focus on the application directly and instead track network bandwidth usage or data access requirements. The point is that internal reports generally focus on your code, users, and resources.

External reports come from third parties. For example, if you hire a third-party tester (see Chapter 12), then you should expect to see a number of reports detailing the status of your application during testing. A third-party report could also list the services that your application actually uses when you obtain access to a library, API, or microservice. By tracking actual usage of these services, ...

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