Categorizing Developer Information Needs in Software Ecosystems

Haenni, Nicole; Lungu, Mircea; Schwarz, Niko; Nierstrasz, Oscar (18 August 2013). Categorizing Developer Information Needs in Software Ecosystems. In: Proceedings of the 1st Workshop on Ecosystem Architectures (pp. 1-5). New York: ACM 10.1145/2501585.2501586

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We present the results of an investigation into the nature of the information needs of software developers who work in projects that are part of larger ecosystems. In an open- question survey we asked framework and library developers about their information needs with respect to both their upstream and downstream projects. We investigated what kind of information is required, why is it necessary, and how the developers obtain this information. The results show that the downstream needs are grouped into three categories roughly corresponding to the different stages in their relation with an upstream: selection, adop- tion, and co-evolution. The less numerous upstream needs are grouped into two categories: project statistics and code usage. The current practices part of the study shows that to sat- isfy many of these needs developers use non-specific tools and ad hoc methods. We believe that this is a largely unexplored area of research.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)


08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Computer Science (INF)
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Computer Science (INF) > Software Composition Group (SCG)

UniBE Contributor:

Lungu, Mircea; Schwarz, Niko and Nierstrasz, Oscar Marius


000 Computer science, knowledge & systems








Oscar Nierstrasz

Date Deposited:

26 Mar 2014 12:21

Last Modified:

18 Feb 2015 11:13

Publisher DOI:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Software ecosystems, programmer needs, open source soft- ware, grounded theory, program comprehension, frameworks and libraries




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