The Promises and Perils of Mining Git

We are now witnessing the rapid growth of decentralized source code management (DSCM) systems, in which every developer has her own repository. DSCMs facilitate a style of collaboration in which work output can flow sideways (and privately) between collaborators, rather than always up and down (and publicly) via a central repository. Decentralization comes with both the promise of new data and the peril of its misinterpretation. We focus on git, a very popular DSCM used in high-profile projects. Decentralization, and other features of git, such as automatically recorded contributor attribution, lead to richer content histories, giving rise to new questions such as "How do contributions flow between developers to the official project repository?" However, there are pitfalls. Commits may be reordered, deleted, or edited as they move between repositories. The semantics of terms common to SCMs and DSCMs sometimes differ markedly, potentially creating confusion. For example, a commit is immediately visible to all developers in centralized SCMs, but not in DSCMs. Our goal is to help researchers interested in DSCMs avoid these and other perils when mining and analyzing git data.

bird2009ppm.pdf
PDF file

In  Proceedings of the Sixth Working Conference on Mining Software Repositories

Publisher  IEEE Computer Society
Copyright © 2007 IEEE. Reprinted from IEEE Computer Society. This material is posted here with permission of the IEEE. Internal or personal use of this material is permitted. However, permission to reprint/republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution must be obtained from the IEEE by writing to pubs-permissions@ieee.org. By choosing to view this document, you agree to all provisions of the copyright laws protecting it.

Details

TypeInproceedings
AddressWashington, DC, USA
> Publications > The Promises and Perils of Mining Git