Sunday, November 30, 2008

2nd RiSS - RiSE Summer School

In the last year, we created RiSS - RiSE Summer School on Software Reuse. The main goal of RiSS is to discuss the main software reuse issues with the main experts in the field from industry and university. In this year, we had the second edition and I believe that the summer school was very nice. In the program, a full discussion about software product lines, the main topic on the software reuse area. As lecturers, we had experts from industry and university from several countries around the world. This mix is part of the RiSS successful.

In this year, we had five lecturers, one Workshop on Software Reuse Efforts and an awesome panel with the lecturers answering questions from the attendants.

During three days, we were in front of the sea as you can see and with a full room composed of 100 people interested on the topic.
In this year, we had the award again for the best lecture and Paul Clements joined to Wayne Lim with the best presentation about product line architecture.

In name of the organization, I would like to say thank you for the participants, lecturers, and authors.

See you next time!!

One more Unforgettable RiSE Day

On November 26th, we had at C.E.S.A.R one more RiSE Day. This special workshop was composed of many discussions involving too many different issues in software reuse. In this edition, we had invited participants:Klaus Schmid, Kyo Kang, Rob Ommering, and Michalis Anastasopoulos.

The great agenda started with an overview about RiSE Labs and continued with the presentations about product lines, service-oriented product lines, bug triage and rise tools. Every year, I believe that this workshop is getting better.

Thanks for all the students and the invited participants for valuable feedback and patience.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Asset Retrieval Tools, Question Answering and Future

Nowadays, we are living in a world widely connected to the Internet where all users from the computer science area or not, are using search engines to find something. Different types of advances are facing these systems including song recognition and face detection. On the other hand, others relevant directions are being explored also. On July 2005, AskJeevs ( was acquired by InterActiveCorp for roughly $2.3 billions.

As you can see by the name, is a question answer system on the web. In a paper from Communications from the ACM (CACM), Roussinov et al. discuss these systems with experimental data and interesting insights. Five years ago, I wrote a “paper” (in Portuguese) called: Common Component Market (CCM): Even your mother will want one! [you can see a draft in English here].

Nowadays, looking again from that paper, the scenario, and the current search engines for source code, how far we are from doing questions such as the ones described in my “paper” and others based on requirements, design, and combining other information such as specific metrics.

The time will say it. Source code engines such as B.A.R.T, Merobase, Koders, etc., maybe can show it soon or not.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Software Reuse Business

In 1996, Wayne Lim wrote a paper Evolution of the Software Reuse Business published in the 4th International Conference on Software Reuse (ICSR). In his paper, Wayne discussed the roots of software reuse regarding the business point of view.

Wayne presented the case of the Raytheon and its efforts at the Raytheon Missiles Systems Division dating back to the mid-1970’s. In that time, the company developed a system which included logic structures, an index system, a library, some design specifications and coding standards. Some years after (1981), Raytheon through the Raytheon Computer Services created its reusable system ReadyCode. Next, with this experience they created a company, MasterSoftware, called the world’s first fully reusable software company, as described by Wayne.

Nowadays, we do not have any news about this company even tough Raytheon is still on business. In Wayne’s analysis, the main issue was that their system was success within Raytheon and the market outside the company boundaries is sometimes very different. Wayne highlights the importance of marketing since reuse within a company differs from reuse as an external business. The second point is the life cycle stage of the technology. In that time, reuse was a new way for the market and the need for education and culture was/is too important too.

From that time, we can see many companies on the road and some of them created by the main researchers on the field working in different areas. Examples of companies created from academic researchers include Bayfront Technologies Inc, a company located in California, founded in 1992 by James Neighbors, one of the pioneers in domain analysis. Semantic Designs, Inc, located in Austin, Texas, USA, was founded in 1995 by Dr. Ira Baxter and Dr. Christopher Pidgeon. BigLever Software, Inc is also located in Austin, Texas, being founded in 1999 by Charles Krueger, an important expert in software reuse. Other important researchers also have their companies, such as Bill Frakes, with Software Engineering Guild, Ruben Prieto-Diaz, with Reuse, Inc, Ted Biggerstaff, with, and Wayne C. Lim, with the Lombard Hill Group, all of them working with consulting and services related to software reuse.
Not directly associated to academic researchers, the Flashline, Inc. company was a large metadata repository vendor, located in Cleveland, OH, USA. It was purchased in 2006 by BEA Systems, Inc, which incorporated Flashline's repository into its product family. Examples of reuse-dedicated companies from other countries include The Reuse Company, located in Madrid, Spain, with tools for knowledge reuse, and Pure-Systems, founded in 2001 in Germany.

In Brazil, RiSE is also a company offering software reuse solutions based on the C.E.S.A.R and RiSE expertise on the topic.

All of these efforts show that the market is looking for ways to increase the productivity, quality and reduce costs and software reuse is an effective way to achieve it. However, in order to be successful it involves a mix of different and important ingredients.