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Evaluation of an awareness distribution mechanism: a simulation approach

By David Nutter and Cornelia Boldyreff

Abstract

In distributed software engineering, the role of informal communication is frequently overlooked. Participants simply employ their own ad-hoc methods of informal communication. Consequently such communication is haphazard, irregular, and rarely recorded as part of the project documentation. Thus, a need for tool support to facilitate more systematic informal communication via awareness has been identified. The tool proposed is based on the provision of awareness support that recognises the complete context of the evolution of software artefacts rather than single events.\ud Peer-to-Peer (P2P) networking has been successfully\ud employed to develop various distributed software engineering support tools. However, there are scalability problems inherent in naive P2P networks. To this end a semantic overlay network organisation algorithm has been developed and tested in simulation prior to deployment as part of a forthcoming awareness extension to the Eclipse environment.\ud The simulation verified that the self-organisation algorithm was suitable for arranging a P2P network, but several unexpected behaviours were observed. These included\ud wandering nodes, starved nodes, and local maxima. Each\ud of these problems required modification of the original algorithm design to solve or ameliorate them

Topics: G610 Software Design, G600 Software Engineering
Year: 2005
DOI identifier: 10.1109/WETICE.2005.67
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.lincoln.ac.uk:55

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