Though Japan has successfully competed with U.S. companies in the manufacturing and marketing of computer hardware, it has been less successful in developing computer programs. This book contains the first detailed analysis of how Japanese firms have tried to redress this imbalance by applyingtheir skills in engineering and production management to software development. Cusumano focuses on the creation of "software factories" in which large numbers of people are engaged in developing software in cooperative ways--i.e. individual programs are not developed in isolation but rather utilizeportions of other programs already developed whenever possible, and then yield usable portions for other programs being written. Devoting chapters to working methods at System Developing Corp., Hitachi, Toshiba, NEC, and Fujitsu, and including a comparison of Japanese and U.S. software factories,Cusumano's book will be important reading for all people involved in software and computer technology, as well as those interested in Japanese business and corporate culture.