Why Do Developers Neglect Exception Handling?


In this paper, we explore the problems associated with exception handling from a new dimension: the human. We designed a study that evaluates (1) different perspectives of software developers to understand how they perceive exception handling and what methods they adopt to deal with exception handling constructs, and (2) the usefulness of a visualization tool that we developed in previous work for exception handling. We describe the design of our study, present details about the study’s participants, describe the interviews we conducted with the participants, present the results of the study, and discuss what we learned from the study. Based on our analysis, we suggest several future directions, including the proposal of a new role for the software-development process—exception engineer, who works closely with software developers throughout all phases of the software-development life cycle and who concentrates on the integration of exception handling into the core functionality of programs.

Related research categories:
(1) Exception Handling
(2) Empirical Studies

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