What is it about?

This article discusses the challenges software developers face when dealing with the large amount of knowledge required for software development projects. The knowledge encompasses various aspects of software development, such as programming languages in use, development methodologies, software tools, and deployment strategies. The article highlights the lack of explicit integration between these types of knowledge and software development projects, leading to developers having to search repeatedly for similar solutions to tasks instead of reusing knowledge. The article presents an approach that allows developers to associate project tasks with posts on Q&A sites such as Stack Overflow and recommends posts that can be reused based on task similarity. The approach was evaluated using an industry dataset containing project tasks associated with Stack Overflow posts. The results showed that the approach can recommend posts when similar tasks are being performed by developers, potentially advancing software knowledge reuse.

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Why is it important?

The approach presented in the article is important because it addresses a significant challenge faced by software developers, which is the need to cope with the massive amount of knowledge required throughout the software development life cycle. By allowing developers to associate project tasks with relevant knowledge sources, such as posts on Stack Overflow, and recommending posts based on task similarity, the approach can improve the efficiency and effectiveness of software development. Reusing knowledge can save developers time and effort and help avoid errors and mistakes. It can also facilitate collaboration and knowledge sharing among developers, leading to better software quality and faster development cycles. In addition, the approach can help bridge the gap between software development and knowledge management by integrating and leveraging the knowledge resources available to developers. Overall, the approach can significantly advance the state of the art of software knowledge reuse, making software development more efficient, effective, and collaborative.


From a technical standpoint, the approach presented in the publication is innovative and can potentially benefit software developers. By leveraging the vast knowledge resources available on Q&A sites like Stack Overflow, the approach can help developers to reuse knowledge and avoid duplicating efforts, leading to more efficient and effective software development. However, the approach's success depends on its practical implementation and integration with existing software development processes and tools. It may also face some challenges, such as the quality and relevance of the knowledge sources and the need for developers to actively participate in associating project tasks with relevant posts. Overall, the publication presents a promising approach that can potentially advance the state of the art of software knowledge reuse and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of software development.

Glaucia Melo
University of Waterloo

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Knowledge reuse in software projects: Retrieving software development Q&A posts based on project task similarity, PLoS ONE, December 2020, PLOS,
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0243852.
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