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Face-to-Face, Email and Instant Messaging in Distributed Agile Software Development Project

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1 Author(s)
Niinimaki, Tuomas ; Software Bus. & Eng. Inst., Aalto Univ., Aalto, Finland

This paper presents our preliminary results from a single case study on face-to-face, email and instant messaging (IM) communication in a distributed agile software development (DASD) project. The project had 13 team members during the time of study, and it was distributed between three different sites: Finland, Norway and Czech Republic. The team was using Scrum process model with three week sprints. We studied face-to-face communication with sociometric badges and email and IM communication by analyzing the project-related communication logs provided by each individual team member. We were interested both in the amount of communication and the communication patterns via different communication media. We found differences in the daily variation of communication amounts across different media as well as different network structure of communication with different media. Specifically, we found some evidence that IM is used as a replacement for face-to-face discussion in DASD, and that email seems to be more suitable for team-wide, inter-site communication than face-to-face or instant messaging.

Published in:

Global Software Engineering Workshop (ICGSEW), 2011 Sixth IEEE International Conference on

Date of Conference:

15-18 Aug. 2011

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