Software development cycle

Software development moves through a cycle. This repeats as the software is developed and upgraded. The steps and description of the cycle vary, but there is always a cyclic process of planning, implementing, testing, deploying, …

This diagram shows one version of the cycle.


The stages are relatively self explanatory:


Think about the task and define it clearly.


Collect necessary information such as background theory.


Develop algorithms, user interface etc.


Write the software. Note that this may require revisiting or refining the earlier stages.


Test the software solution to ensure that it works correctly in all conceivable situations. Some debugging and redesign may be needed at this stage.


This refers to releasing the software to the client.


Ongoing bug fixes, patches and extra features. Maintenance can be seen as repeating the full cycle in a recursive way.

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