Traditional forms of crowdsourcing such as open source software development harness crowd contributions to democratize the creation of software. However, potential contributors must first overcome joining barriers forcing casually committed contributors to spend days or weeks onboarding and thereby reducing participation. To more effectively harness potential contributions from the crowd, we propose a method for programming in which work occurs entirely through microtasks, offering contributors short, self-contained tasks such as implementing part of a function or updating a call site invoking a function to match a change made to the function. In microtask programming, microtasks involve changes to a single artifact, are automatically generated as necessary by the system, and nurture quality through iteration. A study examining the feasibility of microtask programming to create small programs found that developers were able to complete 1008 microtasks, onboard and submit their first microtask in less than 15 minutes, complete all types of microtasks in less than 5 minutes on average, and create 490 lines of code and 149 unit tests. The results demonstrate the potential feasibility as well as revealing a number of important challenges to address to successfully scale microtask programming to larger and more complex programs.
Thu 8 Nov
|15:30 - 15:52|
Eero Laukkanen, Maria PaasivaaraIT University of Copenhagen, Denmark & Aalto University, Finland, Juha Itkonen, Casper LasseniusAalto University, Finland and Simula Metropolitan Center for Digital Engineering, NorwayDOI
|15:52 - 16:14|
Thomas LaTozaGeorge Mason University, Arturo Di Lecce, Fabio Ricci, W. Ben Towne, Andre van der Hoek University of California, IrvineDOI
|16:14 - 16:36|
Ecosystem-Level Determinants of Sustained Activity in Open-Source Projects: A Case Study of the PyPI Ecosystem