A CASE (Computer Aided Software Engineering) tools mean any tool used to automate some activity associated with software development.
Some of these CASE tools assist in phase-related tasks such as specification, structured analysis, design, coding, testing, etc; and others to non-phase activities such as project management and configuration management.
Also Read: Software Maintenance
Reasons for using CASE Tools
- to increase productivity
- to help produce better quality software at lower cost.
Although individual CASE tools are useful, the true power of a tool set can be realized only when these set of tools are integrated into a common framework or environment. A CASE environment facilitates the automation of the step-by-step methodologies for software development. A schematic representation of a CASE environment is shown in Fig. 3.
CASE Environment vs Programming Environment
A CASE environment facilitates the automation of the step-by-step methodologies for software development. In contrast to a CASE environment, a programming environment is an integrated collection of tools to support only the coding phase of software development.
Benefits of CASE
- A key benefit arising out of the use of a CASE environment is cost saving through all development phases. Different studies carry out to measure the impact of CASE put the effort reduction between 30% to 40%.
- Use of CASE tools leads to considerable improvements to quality. This is mainly due to the facts that one can effortlessly iterate through the different phases of software development and the chances of human error are considerably reduced.
- CASE tools help produce high quality and consistent documents. Since the important data relating to a software product are maintained in a central repository, redundancy in the stored data is reduced and therefore chances of inconsistent documentation is reduced to a great extent.
- CASE tools take out most of the drudgery in a software engineer’s work. For example, they need not check meticulously the balancing of the DFDs but can do it effortlessly through the press of a button.
- CASE tools have led to revolutionary cost saving in software maintenance efforts. This arises not only due to the tremendous value of a CASE environment in traceability and consistency checks but also due to the systematic information captured during the various phases of software development as a result of adhering to a CASE environment.
- Introduction of a CASE environment has an impact on the style of working of a company and makes it oriented towards the structured and orderly approach.
Read Further: Wikipedia