The rockstar of my community is a bot: Where are the humans?
03-14, 14:00–14:30 (Europe/Berlin), Stage 1

The use of automated accounts (Bots) in free, open-source software projects has been increasing over time. These accounts facilitate certain maintenance and management tasks, but also complicate the analysis of the activity that the community carries out within those projects. Added to this is the difficulty of identifying individuals (both humans and bots) that use different accounts in various tools commonly used in the development of software projects.

Differentiating these automatic accounts and their contributions from those coming from human developers causes an increasing impact when analyzing the information related to the real activity generated by the community in these projects.

This talk presents the common challenges when identifying automatic accounts in software projects and solutions to alleviate this problem (such as the creation of unique identities that group different profiles from the same or different sources of information). In addition, we will study the impact and evolution of these accounts in a subset of Wikimedia Foundation repositories over the last 10 years or so. This study raises the possibility of observing the differences between the activity of humans and bots, seeing how it evolves in the future, and comparing it with the activity of other communities.

See also: Slides (3.3 MB)

I am an analytics specialist and consultant at Bitergia. I participate in GrimoireLab, a free, open-source platform providing metrics about the software development process. Previously, I worked in the LibreSoft research department of Rey Juan Carlos University (Madrid, Spain).