Carnegie Mellon University
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Eliciting Design Requirements for Maintenance-Oriented IDE's: A Detailed Study of Corrective and Perfective Maintenence Tasks

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posted on 2005-05-01, 00:00 authored by Andrew J. Ko, Htet Htet Aung, Brad A. Myers
Recently, several innovative tools have found their way into mainstream use in modern development environments. However, most of these tools have focused on creating and modifying code, despite evidence that most of programmers’ time is spent understanding code as part of maintenance tasks. If new tools were designed to directly support these maintenance tasks, what types would be most helpful? To find out, a study of expert Java programmers using Eclipse was performed. The study suggests that maintenance work consists of three activities: (1) forming a working set of task-relevant code fragments; (2) navigating the dependencies within this working set; and (3) repairing or creating the necessary code. The study identified several trends in these activities, as well as many opportunities for new tools that could save programmers up to 35% of the time they currently spend on maintenance tasks.


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Copyright © 2005 by the Association for Computing Machinery, Inc. Permission to make digital or hard copies of part or all of this work for personal or classroom use is granted without fee provided that copies are not made or distributed for profit or commercial advantage and that copies bear this notice and the full citation on the first page. Copyrights for components of this work owned by others than ACM must be honored. Abstracting with credit is permitted. To copy otherwise, to republish, to post on servers, or to redistribute to lists, requires prior specific permission and/or a fee. Request permissions from Publications Dept., ACM, Inc., fax +1 (212) 869-0481, or © ACM, 2005. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of ACM for your personal use. Not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in the Proceedings of the 27th international conference on Software engineering {1-59593-963-2 (2005)}



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