The project’s purpose is to provide the customers with end-user analysis of Testimate 6 software for implementing accurate statistical tests on the categorical data including nonparametric inferences created by the Institute for Data Analysis (IDV) and released in 2002. This will be developed in the form of the executive summary report. The main steps of analysis include the analysis of documentation the users need for the utilization of software, comprehensive and customer-centered analysis of flaws and possible improvements that should be introduced to make the software more adapted to consumers’ inquiries, analysis of customer’s needs and tasks that he performed in the view of creating viable end-user decisions, describing methodology chosen in this end-user analysis and the reasons for it, creating workflow diagram describing customer-client processes, the realization of options and the ways of realizing task facilitation and finally providing users with adequate recommendations for software exploitation.
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The analysis of software procedures, tasks, and user documentation needed
Template 6 software includes many exact procedures which cover the following statistical tests which are in their turn the main tasks: one sample, two dependent samples, more than two dependent samples, two completely independent samples, more independent samples, two or some more stratified samples, bioequivalence trials, various measures of agreement, and measures of the association. Besides this, Testimate performs the analysis and computing of unordered and ordered data as well as confidence intervals and includes some widespread parametric procedures.
The analysis revealed that installation was not connected with any problems and needed only about 10 minutes. The only problem that was observed during installation was the so-called ‘printway’ command which is needed to select a printer and install it on the hard drive. Another problem is that this command is only in German though necessary changes should be made to meet the user’s needs. For the complete installation, the program requires nearly 8 MB of space. It is also necessary for preventing Testimate from jumping into DOS when is run by a customer. This will guarantee an effective interface for customers.
Documentation for Testimate
The users of Testimate are provided with ten manuals and booklets such as Configuring and Installing the program for Windows, the Introductory tutorial, Size measures needed for specifying and performing the tests of difference and equivalences with various examples for beginners and advanced users, Validation monograph, etc. The available online help is provided for the users and is easy to understand. The documentation provides customers with all relevant information such as information of effective installation, an overview of the software, starting Testimate 6, entering the data, and performing various statistical tests. Size measures manual contain more than 14 examples of performing various tasks such as processing ordinal data, measurement data, two and multi conditions tests, stratified and meta-analyses, cross-over analysis, testing of the multiple groups, models for covariance analysis.
Evident Testimate’s deficiencies and software shortcomings
It is necessary for the realization of the users’ need to provide necessary information on crossover analysis, confidence intervals, and various tests for noninferiority and equivalence. The user’s manual contains useful information on data management, distribution analysis, comparison within and between groups, stratified and meta-analysis, etc. All documentation presented for the users is well-designed and written and understandable. The examples provided foster practical realization of the users’ tasks.
Testimate may be regarded as comprehensive statistical software but nevertheless, some important statistical procedures are not realized in it. For instance, it provides only asymptotic p values when the exact test is not in place; furthermore, the results grounded on the Monte Carlo simulations are not presented in Testimate. Among other shortcomings, one should mention the absence of Barnard exact test for a noninferiority (with use of Rohmel-Mansmann) procedures, Su-Wei models, Streitberg-Rohmel tests, exact test for the contingency tables, Jonckheere-Terpstra tests. All these shortcomings contribute to significant problems in ensuring users’ tasks realization and should be addressed in the future versions of this software.
The interface of the program is user-friendly though some evident programming faults that on some add-on applications such as used for constructing a stratified test, regression models, and noninferiority tests. All this is quite manageable and needs comprehensive efforts on the part of the manufacturers taking into consideration the needs of customers. For the successful realization of workflow processes and users’ needs, the capabilities of Testimate should be enhanced by means of incorporating necessary statistical tests and various nonparametric statistical methods. Moreover, up-to-date and effective Testimate version for Windows in order to ensure that users have all advantages from the Windows environment. The current price of Testimate may prohibit some potential users from purchasing the product but all governmental, non-governmental, and educational institutions have licensing treaties with IDV which provides them with the possibility of using this useful software.
The conducted end-user analysis proceeded from adequate findings from documentation material and manuals provided with Testimate. The structure and functions of this software were carefully analyzed through the implementation of common tasks performed by the users of the software. The methodology chosen was based on the premise of good interface and task-realization provision for the users and software evaluation was made accordingly.
Out recommendation address the main problems connected with Testimate software in terms of ensuring the realization of end-users tasks. Therefore, the abovementioned deficiencies should be addressed in the view of improving the product’s interface and capacities including adapting the application for Windows, providing additional options for working with widespread statistical tasks not reflected in this version, improving the interface, and cross-platformity.