Broadcast vs. Unicast Review Technology: Does It Matter?


Code review is the process of having other team members examine changes to a software system in order to evaluate their technical content and quality. Over the years, multiple tools have been proposed to help software developers conduct and manage code reviews. Some software organizations have been migrating from broadcast review technology to a more advanced unicast review approach such as Jira, but it is unclear if these unicast review technology leads to better code reviews. This paper empirically studies review data of five Apache projects that switched from broadcast based code review to unicast based, to understand the impact of review technology on review effectiveness and quality. Results suggest that broadcast based review is twice faster than review done with unicast based review technology. However, unicast’s review quality seems to be better than that of the broadcast based. Our findings suggest that the medium (i.e., broadcast or unicast) technology used for code reviews can relate to the effectiveness and quality of reviews activities

2017 IEEE International Conference on Software Testing, Verification and Validation (ICST)
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