Empirical analysis of CK metrics for object-oriented design complexity: Implications for software defects

Ramanath Subramanyam, M. S. Krishnan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

To produce high quality object-oriented (OO) applications, a strong emphasis on design aspects, especially during the early phases of software development, is necessary. Design metrics play an important role in helping developers understand design aspects of software and, hence, improve software quality and developer productivity. In this paper, we provide empirical evidence supporting the role of OO design complexity metrics, specifically a subset of the Chidamber and Kemerer suite, in determining software defects. Our results, based on industry data from software developed in two popular programming languages used in OO development, indicate that, even after controlling for the size of the software, these metrics are significantly associated with defects. In addition, we find that the effects of these metrics on defects vary across the samples from two programming languages-C++ and Java. We believe that these results have significant implications for designing high-quality software products using the OO approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)297-310
Number of pages14
JournalIEEE Transactions on Software Engineering
Volume29
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2003
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • C++
  • Java
  • Object-oriented design
  • Object-oriented languages
  • Software metrics validation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software

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