How do developers blog?

TitleHow do developers blog?
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsMaalej, W, Pagano, D
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
Keywordsblog, communication, developer, eclipse, gnome, LDA, postgres, python

We report on an exploratory study, which aims at understanding how software developers use social media compared to conventional development infrastructures. We analyzed the blogging and the committing behavior of 1,100 developers in four large open source communities. We observed that these communities intensively use blogs with one new entry about every 8 hours. A blog entry includes 14 times more words than a commit message. When analyzing the content of the blogs, we found that most popular topics represent high-level concepts such as functional requirements and domain concepts. Source code related topics are covered in less than 15% of the posts. Our results also show that developers are more likely to blog after corrective engineering and management activities than after forward engineering and re-engineering activities. Our findings call for a hypothesis-driven research to further understand the role of social media in software engineering and integrate it into development processes and tools.


publishing frequency, post structure, word usage, publication patterns, content

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