Influence Of Codified Knowledge On Software Design Task Performance: A Comparison Of Pairs With Individuals
Mangalaraj, George Ashok
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The need to improve the success rates of software development projects has prompted the software engineering community to come-up with various initiatives. These initiatives include: new software development processes such as Extreme Programming (XP), leveraging the development process by reusing existing knowledge of software artifacts. XP utilizes pairs in the performance of various software development tasks. Moreover, development of software applications is a knowledge intensive process that utilizes both tacit and explicit knowledge. This experimental study utilized software development professionals as subjects and manipulated the mode of participation (individual or pairs) and availability of codified knowledge (design patterns). Results of the study indicate that the performance of collaborating pairs were better than the 2nd best individual in nominal pairs. Collaborating pairs also took more time than the average time taken by nominal pairs to complete the task and they were more satisfied than the individuals. This study also found that the codified knowledge in the form of design patterns helped in arriving at a better solution. One interesting finding of this study is the effect of design self-efficacy/collective-efficacy on task performance.