Software engineering is a core capability and a key enabling technology for NASA's missions and supporting infrastructure . The software community site covers topics such as software requirements, design, implementation, architecture, assurance, testing, training, tools, process improvement, best practices, software release, models and simulations, and software research and technology innovation. The NEN Software Engineering Community of Practice site is a distributed, peer-driven network of individuals, engaged in a specific discipline, who come together to share their collective knowledge and learn from one another. The software community at NASA is focused on software engineering discipline. The NASA Office of the Chief Engineer (OCE) maintains Agency-wide process asset data and information, including applicable best practices on the NEN Software Engineering Community of Practice page.
Community members’ work together to identify common problems and explore solutions, and they often develop and implement best practices. Collective disciplines are identified by shared passion for a subject, a shared level of practice within a discipline, and trust and willingness to solve problems collaboratively.
Collocated individuals within a discipline commonly share ideas or discuss work challenges. By extending localized interaction to an online, facilitated forum, community members benefit from exposure to a broader set of related information resources, access to a wider field of peer expertise, and expanded opportunities for knowledge sharing and collaboration
The NASA Engineering Network (NEN) hosts the online environment where software engineering meets to discuss ideas, locate peers, find the latest industry news and events in the software engineering discipline, and access relevant documentation and resources .
Electronic documentation that is intuitive and highly searchable gives software engineers the ability to quickly find the information they need, allowing them to do their jobs more effectively. The Software Engineering Community of Practice page, accessible to NASA personnel on the NASA Engineering Network (NEN), and Software Processes Across NASA (SPAN), accessible to NASA users from the SPAN tab in this Handbook, support this objective.
Current software Community of Practice capabilities are centered on a collection of information arranged in hierarchical fashion. Topics are searchable to help the user quickly locate content related to the user’s need.
The software Community of Practice and Software Processes Across NASA (SPAN) were established and are managed to satisfy two primary goals.
- Provide a repository of software engineering assets.
- Encourage sharing of these assets within the Agency.
The main types of information that reside on these sites include:
- Course materials.
- Software catalogs.
- Metrics repositories.
- Contact lists.
The current NEN Software Engineering Community of Practice site and Software Processes Across NASA (SPAN) are only available inside of NASA and are not available to the public.