YANG Hui, SUN Xiaobing, DUAN Yucong, LI Bin. On the Effects of Exploring Historical Commit Messages for Developer Recommendation[J]. Chinese Journal of Electronics, 2016, 25(4): 658-664. doi: 10.1049/cje.2016.07.006
Citation: YANG Hui, SUN Xiaobing, DUAN Yucong, LI Bin. On the Effects of Exploring Historical Commit Messages for Developer Recommendation[J]. Chinese Journal of Electronics, 2016, 25(4): 658-664. doi: 10.1049/cje.2016.07.006

On the Effects of Exploring Historical Commit Messages for Developer Recommendation

doi: 10.1049/cje.2016.07.006
Funds:  This work is supported by the Natural Science Foundation of China (No.61402396, No.61472344), the Natural Science Foundation of the Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions of China (No.13KJB520027), the Open Funds of State Key Laboratory for Novel Software Technology of Nanjing University (No.KFKT2016B21), the Jiangsu Qing Lan Project, and the Research Innovation Program for College Graduates of Jiangsu Province (No.SJLX15_0665).
  • Received Date: 2015-03-17
  • Rev Recd Date: 2015-09-09
  • Publish Date: 2016-07-10
  • Many developer recommendation techniques have been developed in the literature. Among existing studies, most of them are performed based on exploring the historical commit repository. The thought behind them is that developers who submit similar historical commits relevant to the incoming issue are more probably to be the candidates for the current issue resolution. But whether such a thought is always useful for developer recommendation? This paper aims at this problem by conducting a set of empirical studies on four real open-source projects. The results show that, 1) historical commit messages do well reflect the historical experience of the maintenance task of developers and can be used for developer recommendation in most of the time; 2) the number of historical commits submitted by the recommended developer(s) and the similarity value used to select the relevant historical commits should be carefully considered to recommend developers for issue resolution; 3) The efficiency of issue resolution process can be improved if some associated source code files relevant to this issue can be also recommended; and 4) developer recommendation techniques that rank the recommended developers based on the times of co-changed source code files cannot always produce correct recommendation results.
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