Michael A. Jackson

From Academic Kids

Michael Anthony Jackson (1936- ) works as an independent consultant in London, England, and also as a part-time researcher at AT&T Research, Florham Park, NJ, USA. He is a visiting research professor at the Open University in the UK.

In the 1970s he developed Jackson Structured Programming (JSP). In the 1980s, with John Cameron, he developed Jackson System Development (JSD). And in the 1990s he developed the Problem Frames Approach.

His books include:

About the Jackson methods

JSP (Jackson Structured Programming) was the first software development method that Jackson developed. It is a program design method, and was described in his book Principles of Program Design. JSP covers the design of individual programs, but not systems.

JSD (Jackson System Development) was the second software development method that Jackson developed. JSD is a system development method not just for individual programs, but for entire systems. JSD is most readily applicable to information systems, but it can easily be extended to the development of real-time embedded systems. JSD was described in his book System Development.

Problem Analysis or the Problem Frames Approach was the third software development method that Jackson developed. It concerns itself with aspects of developing all kinds of software, not just information systems. It was first sketched in his book Software Requirements and Specifications, and described much more fully in his book Problem Frames.

Each of these methods covers a wider scope than the previous one, and builds on ideas that appeared, but were not fully developed, in the previous one. Reading his books in sequence allows you to follow the evolution of his thinking.

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