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Why Use UML?

As the strategic value of software increases for many companies, the industry looks for techniques to automate the production of software and to improve quality and reduce cost and time-to-market. These techniques include component technology, visual programming, patterns and frameworks. Businesses also seek techniques to manage the complexity of systems as they increase in scope and scale. In particular, they recognise the need to solve recurring architectural problems, such as physical distribution, concurrency, replication, security, load balancing and fault tolerance. Additionally the development for the World Wide Web, while making some things simpler, has exacerbated these architectural problems. The Unified Modelling Language (UML) was designed to respond to these needs.

The answer boils down to one word: communication. This is an important word. The main reason software is deceptively hard to develop is communication. We know how easy things would be if we could only sneak off for a weekend and code away. The difficulty arises because we must communicate with multiple developers. The UML is important because it can help software developers communicate. We have to use it in a way that helps communication and does not hinder it.

Next: Rapid Application Development (RAD)