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The term “structured programming” is a common misnomer. Of course, all programs have some kind of structure. Some structures, however, are certainly better than others. What most people need is not a method for structured program design, but rather a method for good program design. Good programs have two fundamental attributes: they work and they are easily modified. Toward that end, we created the Warnier/Orr Data Structured Systems Development Methodology. Based on just a handful of simple principles, this method is used by hundreds of people around the world to build better software.

No competent electronics engineer would consider building a computer without working from a design. There are simply too many things to get wrong or leave out by mistake. Yet software developers routinely try to create programs without creating a detailed design first. This results in programs that work poorly and that are difficult to modify when new requirements become known. If the logic of a program is analogous to roads and freeways, what is necessary for good programming is planning and map-making.

The Data Structured Program Design Course provides an in-depth look at the Warnier/Orr program design and construction techniques. Based initially on the work of Warnier and M.A. Jackson, Data Structured Program Design employs the principle that the structure of the logic in the program is the same as the structure of the data. This means that a program designed using this method will be more predictable, more effective, more reliable, and more maintainable.

This intensive three-day workshop presents numerous examples and exercises that give the student practical and proven methods for building better programs. Based on sound mathematical principles, the Warnier/Orr method includes the concepts of information hiding, data abstraction, data encapsulation, and reusable model program templates. The workshop also stresses the importance of computer – aided program development and illustrates the use of a lower-CASE tool for program design and construction.

Course Information

   Who Should Attend

Software developers, programmers, programmer analysts, and analysts wishing to know more about the internal design of good programs. Knowledge of a high-level programming language is desirable, but not necessary.


Course Length  

Three days divided into 6 segments of 3 hours each, with lunch and coffee breaks.

Course Outline            


1. Introduction              
2. Background                 
           3. Fundamental Principles
A. Output Oriented      
B. Logical vs. Physical
C. Data Structured       
                 D. Sets, Subsets, and Mappings
E. Structure                    
4. Methodology                
A. Logical Design         
                     1. Logical Output Structure
                2. Logical Data Structure
                   3. Logical Output Mapping
B. Physical Design      
1. Augmentation
                       2. Physical Output Mappings
                         a. Structure Clash     

                                                                                    b. Using Inverted Hierarchies                                      
                    3. Physical Input Mappings
C. Model Programs     
           1. Recognizing Models
                 2. Some Common Models
D. Coding and Testing
5. Advanced Concepts  
A. Graphics                  
B. Real-Time               
C. Complex Outputs 
        D. Program Architecture
6. Conclusion                      
A. Getting Started      
          B. Critical Success Factors


Other courses available on the  

Warnier/Orr Data Structured Sytems Development Methodology 

End - User Requirements Definition

Data Structured Systems / Data Base Design

Data Structured Software Maintenance

These classes are available for presentation in an in-house format; they may be offered as a public course if there is sufficient interest in a particular geographic area. For availability and pricing, please call us at   785 . 228 .1200.


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  The Ken Orr Institute  

5883 S.W. 29th St., Suite 101, Topeka, KS 66614

Phone: 785.228.1200 Fax: 785.228.1201
Email: webmaster@kenorrinst.com