Software architecture as a means of communication in a globally distributed software development context

Document type: Conference Papers
Peer reviewed: Yes
Full text:
Author(s): Richard Berntsson Svensson, Aybüke Aurum, Barbara Paech, Tony Gorschek, Devesh Sharma
Title: Software architecture as a means of communication in a globally distributed software development context
Journal: Lecture Notes in Computer Science
Conference name: 13th International Conference on Product-Focused Software Process Improvement, PROFES
Year: 2012
Pagination: 175-189
ISBN: 978-364231062-1
Publisher: Springer
City: Madrid
URI/DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-31063-8_14
Organization: Blekinge Institute of Technology
Department: School of Computing (Sektionen för datavetenskap och kommunikation)
School of Computing S-371 79 Karlskrona
+46 455 38 50 00
http://www.bth.se/com
Language: English
Abstract: The management and coordination of globally distributed development poses many new challenges, including compensating for informal implicit communication, which is aggravated by heterogeneous social and engineering traditions between development sites. Although much research has gone into identifying challenges and working with practical solutions, such as tools for communication, little research has focused on comparing communication mechanisms in terms of their ability to provide large volumes of rich information in a timely manner. Data was collected through in-depth interviews with eleven practitioners and twenty-eight responses through a web-based questionnaire from three product lines at an international software development organization. This paper assesses the relative importance of ten commonly used communication mechanisms and practices across local and global development sites. The results clearly indicate that some communication mechanisms are more important than others in providing large volumes of rich information in a timely manner. The prevalence of architecture in providing rich information in large volumes for both local and global communication can be clearly observed.
Subject: Software Engineering\General
Keywords: Case Study; Communication; Global Software Engineering; Product Management; Software Architecture; Software Product Lines
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