AuthorsA. Yamashita and L. Moonen
TitleDo Developers Care About Code Smells? - an Exploratory Survey
AfilliationSoftware Engineering
Project(s)The Certus Centre (SFI)
Publication TypeTechnical reports
Year of Publication2013
NumberTR 2013-01
PublisherSimula Research Laboratory

Code smells are a well-known metaphor to describe symptoms of code decay or other issues with code quality which can lead to a variety of maintenance problems. Even though code smell detection and removal has been well-researched over the last decade, it remains open to debate whether or not code smells should be considered meaningful conceptualizations of code quality issues from the developer's perspective. To some extend, this question applies as well to the results provided by current code smell detection tools. Are code smells really important for developers? If they are not, is this due to the lack of relevance of the underlying concepts, due to the lack of awareness about code smells on the developers' side, or due to the lack of appropriate tools for code smell analysis or removal? In order to align and direct research efforts to address actual needs and problems of professional developers, we need to better understand the knowledge about, and interest in code smells, together with their perceived criticality. This paper reports on the results obtained from an exploratory survey involving 85 professional software developers.

Citation Keytechreport-2013-01