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Analyzing the check-in information of open source software projects which use a version control system such as CVS or SUBVERSION can yield interesting and important insights into the programming behavior of developers. As in every major project tasks are assigned to many developers, the development must be coordinated between these programmers. This paper describes three visualization techniques that help to examine how programmers work together, e.g. if they work as a team or if they develop their part of the software separate from each other. Furthermore, phases of stagnation in the lifetime of a project can be uncovered and thus, possible problems are revealed. To demonstrate the usefulness of these visualization techniques we performed case studies on two open source projects. In these studies interesting patterns of developers' behavior, e.g. the specialization on a certain module can be observed. Moreover, modules that have been changed by many developers can be identified as well as such ones that have been altered by only one programmer.
Date of Conference: 20-26 May 2007