Topic "Processes"

The way software is constructed in teams of developers from the first steps of requirements analysis, specification and design to the stages of implementation, test and deployment is all captured by the term "process". Choosing, introducing and improving processes are some of the most important topics in Software Engineering since the management can act upon them. For Open Source we are faced with a number of problems that impede traditional processes from working: There is no centralized management that makes decisions, there are no meetings, no dead-lines, no assigned tasks, etc. How do the Open Source Software projects manage to develop quality software even when the process that seems to be evitable is chaos?

Walt Saachi from University of California at Irvine has thaught a class about Software Processes that deals at least in the beginning mainly with Open Source projects: ICS 225: Software Process class website

We will split this topic as it is central to the seminar.

Key Questions

  • Which processes get employed by Open Source Projects to manage the developement?
  • How do these differ from traditional software engineering?
  • What can the two learn from each other about how to develop software?


  • Christian R. Reis and Renata P.M. Fortes, An Overview of the Software Engineering Process and Tools in the Mozilla Project, Proc. Workshop on Open Source Software Development, Newcastle, UK, February 2002. (PDF)
  • W. Scacchi, Understanding the Requirements for Developing Open Source Software Systems, IEE Proceedings - Software, 2002. (PDF)
  • Book: Software Engineering (7th Edition) by Ian Sommerville Publisher: Addison Wesley; 7 edition (May 10, 2004) ISBN: 0321210263
  • Book: Software Engineering: A Practitioner's Approach by Roger S Pressman, Roger Pressman Publisher: Mc Graw-Hill Science/Engineering/Math; 6 edition (April 2, 2004) ISBN: 007301933X
  • Cornelia Boldyreff, Janet Lavery, David Nutter, and Stephen Rank, Department of Computer Science, University of Durham, Open-Source Development Processes and Tools (PDF)
  • Douglas C. Schmidt, Adam Porter, Leveraging Open-Source Communities To Improve the Quality & Performance of Open-Source Software(PDF)
  • Michael W. Godfrey and Qiang Tu, Software Architecture Group (SWAG), Department of Computer Science, University of Waterloo ,Evolution in Open Source Software: A Case Study (PDF)
  • Walt Scacchi, Chris Jensen, John Noll and Margaret Elliott, Institute for Software Research, University of California, Santa Clara University, Multi-Modal Modeling, Analysis and Validation of Open Source Software Requirements Processes (PDF)
  • Michael B. Twidale, David M. Nichols, Department of Computer Science University of Waikato, Usability Discussions in Open Source Development (PDF)
  • Bibek Debroy and Julian Morris, Open to development: open-source software and economic development (PDF)
  • AUDRIS MOCKUS Avaya Labs Research, ROY T FIELDING eBuilt, JAMES D HERBSLEB Bell Laboratories, Lucent Technologies, Two Case Studies of Open Source Software Development: Apache and Mozilla (PDF)

References from Peer



Processes (PDF)

Presentation (PPT)