Do comments explain codes adequately?

TitleDo comments explain codes adequately?
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsMizuno, O, Hirata, Y
Tertiary Authorsvan Deursen, A, Xie, T, Zimmermann, T
Secondary TitleProceedings of the 8th working conference on Mining software repositories - MSR '11
Date Published05/2011
PublisherACM Press
Place PublishedNew York, New York, USA
ISBN Number9781450305747
Keywordscomments, eclipse, msr challenge, netbeans, prediction

Comment lines in the software source code include descriptions of codes, usage of codes, copyrights, unused codes, comments, and so on. It is required for comments to explain the content of written code adequately, since the wrong description in the comment may causes further bug and confusion in maintenance.

In this paper, we try to clarify a research question: "In which projects do comments describe the code adequately?" To answer this question, we selected the group 1 of mining challenge and used data obtained from Eclipse and Netbeans. Since it is difficult to answer the above question directly, we define the distance between codes and comments. By utilizing the fault-prone module prediction technique, we can answer the alternative question from the data of two projects. The result shows that Eclipse project has relatively adequate comments.

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