Thursday, June 4, 2009

Idea for a Meta-Study

Idea for a meta-study: lots of papers have been published in which a controlled experiment is performed to examine the potential benefits of TDD. These are mostly all of the flavor: have control group implement some spec, using code-first-test-last, have experimental group implement same spec using TDD, measure time to complete and defect count of both groups. It seems (at least in my experience), that there are two possible outcomes from this, either the results are inconclusive, or they tend slightly towards the author's own feelings on the subject, either for or against TDD. I think an interesting, and probably easy to conduct, meta-study would be to pull down copies of all papers that are performing studies like these and see what the trend is, as well as analyzing things like geographic region of the authors or other relevant, although maybe not immediately obvious, correlations.

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