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SonarQube in Action: Technical Debt

 
Burk Hufnagel
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Personally, I like the Technical Debt widget, but I'm wondering if most people find it effective for developers and managers.

Based on your experience, does making the debt more visual help them understand the problems and take action to lower the project's overall debt?

Thanks,
Burk
 
Patroklos Papapetrou
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Hi Burk

I just replied in another thread ( http://www.coderanch.com/t/620589/vc/SonarQube-Talking-managers-execs-code ) about the technical debt plugin and what managers / executives understand better.

I'd like to add however that SonarQube guys won't invest any more time to this plugin. They will provide in next major release of SonarQube a lightweight version of the SQALE method ( currently this is only available as a commerical plugin ) which will have better insights and visibility of source code quality for managers and executives.
 
Burk Hufnagel
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Patroklos Papapetrou wrote:I'd like to add however that SonarQube guys won't invest any more time to this plugin. They will provide in next major release of SonarQube a lightweight version of the SQALE method ( currently this is only available as a commerical plugin ) which will have better insights and visibility of source code quality for managers and executives.

I'm not familiar with SQALE but I took a quick look at the web site for the plug-in, and it seems like it might be a fancier version of the Technical Debt plug-in. Would that be a fair assessment? Is there anything particularly interesting or valuable that it provides?

I'm also wondering if it's the kind of tool that business folks will like, but technical folks will be somewhat less happy with?

Thanks!
Burk
 
G. Ann Campbell
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I'll be quite honest: I haven't dug into the SQALE model.

Re the Technical Debt widget: I keep it on my dashboard, but I don't think anyone pays attention to it. People ask about it when they first see it, but then you explain that it's based on estimates for the average time to correct a defect of X type and they realize how fuzzy the numbers truly are. I'm afraid they never look at it again.
 
Burk Hufnagel
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G. Ann Campbell wrote:Re the Technical Debt widget: I keep it on my dashboard, but I don't think anyone pays attention to it. People ask about it when they first see it, but then you explain that it's based on estimates for the average time to correct a defect of X type and they realize how fuzzy the numbers truly are. I'm afraid they never look at it again.

Ann,
The calculations for the Technical Debt widget are on the detailed in the docs at CodeHaus. I don't know if there's a config panel for the plug-in but, worst case, you could modify the values and recompile so it fits your organization's way of estimating the debt. That should make it more interesting, shouldn't it?

Burk
 
Patroklos Papapetrou
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Indeed there's a configuration page for the Technical Debt plugin where you can modify the weight of each quality category and I totally agree that this makes the plugin interesting and valuable
 
Burk Hufnagel
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Thanks, Patroklos. It's funny, but the more I learn about SonarQube, the less surprised I am when I find out it works like I expected it should. To me, that's a sign of a well-designed application.

Burk
 
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