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Research Projects

When a live site is down or time is of the essence, software teams mobilize to fix bugs as fast as possible. How might such important bugs be fixed more quickly? One answer is through crowdsourcing, where ad-hoc participants are each given small, self-contained microtasks that are then aggregated into an overall solution. To explore this idea, we are currently designing new techniques and tools for crowd debugging.

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Project Dates: 
January 2013

Cross-situational personality consistency has been of interest in social psychology since the 1960s. With the advent of the Internet, a new range of “situations” has been presented for investigating human behavior in online environments.

Project Dates: 
October 2012

When there is a major environmental disruption such as a natural disaster or war, it is not only the technical infrastructure that needs to be repaired but also the human infrastructure. I am currently studying collaboration resilience-the extent to which people continue to work and socialize despite such a disruption. In this project we are examining the role that information technology plays in helping people repair their human infrastructure.

Research Area(s): 
Project Dates: 
January 2008

Over the last several years we have been studying how digital media affects people’s lives. Rather than bring people into a laboratory, I view the real world as a living laboratory--I go where people live, study, and work, to study them as they go about their normal activities. Digital media use affects people’s mood, stress, and behavior quite significantly. In particular, people experience disruptions when working with digital media due to multi-tasking and interruptions.

Research Area(s): 
Project Dates: 
January 2004

The development of a software system is now ever more frequently a part of a larger development effort, including multiple software systems that co-exist in the same environment: a software ecosystem. Though most studies of the evolution of software have focused on a single software system, there is much that we can learn from the analysis of a set of interrelated systems. Topic modeling techniques show promise for mining the data stored in software repositories to understand the evolution of a system.

Project Dates: 
September 2012

One of the many challenges of software development and maintenance is the need to collaborate among many constituents and stakeholders. For example, clients interact with software development organizations; software-development organizations consist of many developers and maintainers within the same location and across different locations; and the development organization often outsources some of the testing efforts to independent test agencies. Each of these parties may reside in different locations, often across many very disparate time zones.

Project Dates: 
May 2009

Code search has become an integral part of the day-to-day programming activity with developers seeking to take advantage of the vast amount of code and advice available on sites such as Stack Overflow, GitHub, and Ohloh.  Finding the 'right' code, however, remains a serious challenge.  CodeExchange is a new code search platform that offers social-technical code search: search enriched with social-technical metadata through which targeted queries can be formulated, results quickly filtered, and code that is found easily integrated into the project at hand.

Project Dates: 
July 2012

Sustainability has become a pressing concern, especially given the looming effects of climate change. Sustainable development aims to meet current needs while ensuring sustainability of natural systems and the environment so as to not compromise the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Current software engineering methods, however, do not explicitly support sustainability or sustainable development.

Project Dates: 
January 2011

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