Co-existence of the 'technical debt' and 'software legacy' concepts
Paper in proceeding, 2016

'Technical debt' and 'software legacy' are concepts that both discuss a state of software that is sub-optimal, time constrained, and explain how this state can decrease an organization's development efficiency. However, there is significant confusion in the way the software engineering community perceive these concepts. In this paper we perform an initial examination of technical debt and software legacy concepts, and examine their somewhat challenging co-existence. In motivating our work, we discuss previous survey results which show that practitioners believe that technical debt largely emerges from software legacy. We then identify sources of confusion in comparing popular definitions of both concepts. Finally, we map the use of the 'technical debt' and 'software legacy' concepts in existing research. We conclude that structured co-existence of these terms can be pursued with mutually beneficial gains.


J. Holvitie

University of Turku

S. A. Licorish

University of Otago

Antonio Martini

Chalmers, Computer Science and Engineering (Chalmers), Software Engineering (Chalmers)

V. Leppänen

University of Turku

CEUR Workshop Proceedings

16130073 (ISSN)

Vol. 1771 80-83

Joint of the 4th International Workshop on Quantitative Approaches to Software Quality, QuASoQ 2016 and 1st International Workshop on Technical Debt Analytics, TDA 2016
Hamilton, New Zealand,

Subject Categories

Computer and Information Science

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