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Global and distributed software development increases the need to find and connect developers with relevant expertise. Existing recommendation systems typically model expertise based on file changes (implementation expertise). While these approaches have shown success, they require a substantial recorded history of development for a project. Previously, we have proposed the concept of usage expertise, i.e., expertise manifested through the act of calling (using) a method. In this paper, we assess the viability of this concept by evaluating expert recommendations for the ASPECTJ and ECLIPSE projects. We find that both usage and implementation expertise have comparable levels of accuracy, which suggests that usage expertise may be used as a substitute measure. We also find a notable overlap of method calls across both projects, which suggests that usage expertise can be leveraged to recommend experts from different projects and thus for projects with little or no history.
Date of Conference: 20-26 Sept. 2009