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Empirical Software Engineering Group (ESE)

The Empirical Software Engineering working group empowers software development teams to make sound data-driven decisions by deploying novel analytic tools and methods based on ESE’s empirical research on products, process, people, and customers.

Our current interests are in the areas of:

  • Software Reliability: Predicting Failures/Failure-proneness, Test Prioritization, Failure Analysis.
  • Software Process: Organizational Impact on Quality, Agile Software Development, Global Software Development, Effort Estimation
  • Empirical Studies: Unit Testing, Inspections, Assertions, Test Driven Development
  • Games Research: Impact of Social Play, Retention of Players, Usage of Game Features

For an overview of our research activities, we recommend the showcase paper "Empirical Software Engineering at Microsoft Research".

Publications

Prem Devanbu, Thomas Zimmermann, and Christian Bird, Belief & Evidence in Empirical Software Engineering, in Proceedings of the 38th International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE 2016), ACM – Association for Computing Machinery, May 2016.

Edward K. Smith, Christian Bird, and Thomas Zimmermann, Beliefs, Practices, and Personalities of Software Engineers: A Survey in a Large Software Company, in Proceedings of the 9th International Workshop on Cooperative and Human Aspects of Software Engineering (CHASE 2016), ACM – Association for Computing Machinery, May 2016.

Miryung Kim, Thomas Zimmermann, Robert DeLine, and Andrew Begel, The Emerging Role of Data Scientists on Software Development Teams, in Proceedings of the 38th International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE 2016), ACM – Association for Computing Machinery, May 2016.

Michael Washburn Jr, Pavithra Sathiyanarayanan, Meiyappan Nagappan, Thomas Zimmermann, and Christian Bird, "What Went Right and What Went Wrong": An Analysis of 155 Postmortems from Game Development, in Proceedings of the 38th International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE 2016 SEIP Track), ACM – Association for Computing Machinery, May 2016.

Pavneet Singh Kochhar, Nachiappan Nagappan, Thomas Zimmermann, and Christian Bird, Appendix to Transitioning from Closed Source to Open Source: Analysis and Observations from Six Projects, no. MSR-TR-2015-82, October 2015.

David Lo, Nachiappan Nagappan, and Thomas Zimmermann, How Practitioners Perceive the Relevance of Software Engineering Research, ACM – Association for Computing Machinery, September 2015.

Brittany Johnson, Thomas Zimmermann, and Christian Bird, Appendix to The Effect of Work Environments on Productivity, no. MSR-TR-2015-66, 28 August 2015.

Edward K. Smith, Christian Bird, and Thomas Zimmermann, Build it yourself! Homegrown tools in a large software company, in Proceedings of the 37th International Conference on Software Engineering, IEEE – Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, May 2015.

Michael Barnett, Christian Bird, Joao Brunet, and Shuvendu Lahiri, Helping developers help themselves: Automatic decomposition of code review changesets., in Proceedings of the 37th International Conference on Software Engineering, IEEE – Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, May 2015.

Christopher Theisen, Kim Herzig, Patrick Morrison, Brendan Murphy, and Laurie Williams, Approximating Attack Surfaces with Stack Traces, in Companion Proceedings of the 37th International Conference on Software Engineering, IEEE – Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, May 2015.

Kim Herzig and Nachiappan Nagappan, Empirically Detecting False Test Alarms Using Association Rules, in Companion Proceedings of the 37th International Conference on Software Engineering, IEEE – Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, May 2015.

Kim Herzig, Michaela Greiler, Jacek Czerwonka, and Brendan Murphy, The Art of Testing Less without Sacrificing Quality, in Proceedings of the 2015 International Conference on Software Engineering, IEEE – Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, May 2015.

Amiangshu Bosu, Michaela Greiler, and Christian Bird, Characteristics of Useful Code Reviews: An Empirical Study at Microsoft, in Proceedings of the International Conference on Mining Software Repositories, IEEE – Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, May 2015.

Miryung Kim, Thomas Zimmermann, Robert DeLine, and Andrew Begel, The Emerging Role of Data Scientists on Software Development Teams, no. MSR-TR-2015-30, 12 April 2015.

Patrick Morrison, Kim Herzig, Brendan Murphy, and Laurie Williams, Challenges with Applying Vulnerability Prediction Models, in Proceedings of the 2015 Symposium and Bootcamp on the Science of Security, ACM – Association for Computing Machinery, April 2015.

Internships

We are always looking for exceptional PhD candidates to join us as interns, any time of the year, though summer is the typical time interns visit. We have the possibility of students spending an internship either in Cambridge, UK or Redmond, USA. To apply for an internship in the ESE group, please send an email with your CV to ese-internships@microsoft.com.

Visitors

Professors

David Lo (2014)
Miryung Kim (2011, 2014)
Emerson Murphy-Hill (2012, 2013)
Tim Menzies (2011, 2012)
Abram Hindle (2011)
Sung Kim (2010)
Harald Gall (2008, 2009)
Laurie Williams (2009)
Andreas Zeller (2005, 2009)
Victor R. Basili (2007)
Neeraj Suri (2007)

Post-docs

Martin Pinzger (2007)

Interns

Amiangshu Bosu (2014)
Joao Brunet Monteiro (2014)
Erik Harpstead (2014)
Ayushi Rastogi (2014)
Ted Smith (2014)
Oscar Edwin Alvarez Callau (2013)
Gifford Cheung (2013)
Thomas Debeauvais (2013)
Baishakhi Ray (2013)
Alberto Bacchelli (2012, 2013)
Kıvanç Muşlu (2011, 2013)
Jeff Huang (2012)
Ekrem Kocagüneli (2012)
Shaun Phillips (2012)
Juliana Saraiva (2012)
Alexander Tarvo (2012)
Sauvik Das (2011)
Ashish Gupta (2011)
Juan Francisco Rodríguez (2011)
Francisco Servant (2011)
Emad Shihab (2011)
Ray Buse (2010)
Ken Hullett (2010)
Mei Nagappan (2010)
Kalaikumaran Ramamurthy (2010)
Christian Bird (2008, 2009)
Philip Guo (2009)
Ayse Tosun (2009)
Andreas Johansson (2007)
Lucas Layman (2007)
Thomas Zimmermann (2006)