Getting Information to Software Engineers When and Where They Need It

Dr Christoph Treude

Location: Innovation Space, Birch Building

Distinguished Talks

Dr Christoph Treude
Dr Christoph Treude


Software developers have access to many documentation channels, ranging from formal API specifications to informal exchanges on the question-and-answer forum Stack Overflow. Yet, finding the right piece of natural language or source code in these channels can be challenging. To support developers in navigating the available information, we are developing approaches to get information to them when and where they need it. This talk will highlight several such approaches, including a task-based search interface for software documentation, an approach for improving compiler error messages with content from Stack Overflow, and a badge-generator for sections of GitHub README files. A unique characteristic of software documentation is the tight integration of natural language and source code. While this poses challenges to the automated analysis of the information in these channels, it also creates opportunities for new software engineering tools, for example to facilitate code reuse. In this talk, we summarize our previous and ongoing work on improving software developers’ access to the knowledge that is captured in software documentation in the form of natural language and source code.


Christoph Treude is a Senior Lecturer in Software Engineering at the School of Computing and Information Systems at The University of Melbourne. The goal of his research is to improve the quality of software and the productivity of those producing it. He has authored more than 150 scientific articles with more than 250 co-authors, and his work has received an ARC Discovery Early Career Research Award, industry funding from Google, Facebook, and DST, as well as four best paper awards including two ACM SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper Awards. Currently, he serves on the Editorial Boards of the IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering and the Springer journal on Empirical Software Engineering. He also holds the role of Open Science Editor for the Elsevier Journal of Systems and Software. He has served as the General Chair for ICSME 2020, ICPC 2023, and TechDebt 2023.

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