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Supporting Dispersed Software Management

This is a completed project.


Dispersed software development teams encounter problems that do not occur when development is undertaken with co-located development teams. Lack of face-to-face communication, time differences and difficulty participating in meetings are just three of the many issues that must be dealt with. We are working to provide tool support that can reduce the effect of these problems for small dispersed development teams .

Initially, we developed a multi-user web application for supporting dispersed SCRUM teams. The tool allowed project team members to create and update user stories and tasks in a collaborative manner. An interactive burndown chart allowed users to drill down and to determine the tasks and user stories that were affecting their project. The main goal of this tool was to allow development team members that were located in different cities to more easily participate in sprint planning and review meetings. We collected feedback from a local software development company after they used the tool for a sprint. Their feedback indicated that a complete tool of this nature could improve their dispersed development environment.

The second part of the project surveyed both co-located and dispersed development teams to better understand how they use task lists in their day-to-day work. The results of the survey were used to create a visualization of task lists that would be appropriate for use on an ambient display in a software team room or on a single developer’s workstation. Similar to the previous tool, the visualization is designed to be an interactive and multi-user web application conducive to a surface computing environment. The goal of the visualization is to clearly report the most common information that a project team member requires from their task list. Users interact with the visualization to gain a more detailed view of their project and the activities of its members.



  • Dr. Kevin Schneider (co-supervisor)
  • David Noete (MSc Student)