The pile of papers, books and data-sets, relating to previously released draft chapters of my Empirical software engineering book, has been growing, and cluttering up my mind. I decided to have a clear-out.
A couple of things stood out.
There are around 25 data-sets that have been promised but not yet arrived. If you encounter anybody who mentions they promised to send me data, please encourage them to spend some time doing this. I don’t want to add a new category, promised but never delivered, to the list of email responses.
There has been an increase in data-sets not being used because I already have something better. This is a good sign, data quality is increasing. One consequence is that a growing number of ‘historical’ data-sets have fallen by the wayside. This is a good thing, most data-sets analysed in papers are very low quality and only used because nothing else was available.
One of my reasons for making draft releases was to prompt people to suggest data I had missed. This has not happened yet; come on people, suggest some data I don’t yet know about.
About a third of the pile got included in the latest draft, a third had been superseded by something better, and a third are still waiting for promised data.
Now, back to the reliability chapter.