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9.6 million links in source code comments: purpose, evolution, and decay

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dc.contributor.advisor en
dc.contributor.author Hata, Hideaki en
dc.contributor.author Christoph, Treude en
dc.contributor.author Raula, Gaikovina Kula en
dc.contributor.author Ishio, Takashi en
dc.date.accessioned 2019-10-08T04:48:12Z en
dc.date.available 2019-10-08T04:48:12Z en
dc.date.issued 2019-05-25 en
dc.identifier.issn 1558-1225 en
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10061/13395 en
dc.description ICSE '19 Proceedings of the 41st International Conference on Software Engineering Montreal, Quebec, Canada — May 25 - 31, 2019 ja
dc.description.abstract Links are an essential feature of the World Wide Web, and source code repositories are no exception. However, despite their many undisputed benefits, links can suffer from decay, insufficient versioning, and lack of bidirectional traceability. In this paper, we investigate the role of links contained in source code comments from these perspectives. We conducted a large-scale study of around 9.6 million links to establish their prevalence, and we used a mixed-methods approach to identify the links' targets, purposes, decay, and evolutionary aspects. We found that links are prevalent in source code repositories, that licenses, software homepages, and specifications are common types of link targets, and that links are often included to provide metadata or attribution. Links are rarely updated, but many link targets evolve. Almost 10% of the links included in source code comments are dead. We then submitted a batch of link-fixing pull requests to open source software repositories, resulting in most of our fixes being merged successfully. Our findings indicate that links in source code comments can indeed be fragile, and our work opens up avenues for future work to address these problems. en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher IEEE Press Piscataway, NJ, USA ©2019 ja
dc.rights IEEE Press Piscataway, NJ, USA ©2019 ja
dc.subject C++ languages en
dc.subject Java en
dc.subject Licenses en
dc.subject Documentation en
dc.subject Python en
dc.subject Web sites en
dc.title 9.6 million links in source code comments: purpose, evolution, and decay en
dc.type.nii Conference Paper en
dc.contributor.transcription ハタ, ヒデアキ ja
dc.contributor.transcription イシオ, タカシ ja
dc.contributor.alternative 畑, 秀明 ja
dc.contributor.alternative 石尾, 隆 ja
dc.textversion author en
dc.identifier.spage 1211 en
dc.identifier.epage 1221 en
dc.relation.doi 10.1109/ICSE.2019.00123 en
dc.identifier.NAIST-ID 73299364 en
dc.identifier.NAIST-ID 82044967 en
dc.identifier.NAIST-ID 74653577 en


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