Sunday, July 24, 2011

Less flattering statistics

I've stopped counting the number of opened and fixed Trac bugs quite some time ago because it was too much trouble to do it semi-manually. But one of the side effects of the recrudescence of my love affair with Perl is that I'm looking for excuses to write more Perl code and so I spent half an hour today on writing a small script allowing to gather ticket statistics automatically. This is probably not the best way to do it (it would be better to install some Trac statistics plugin server-side) and the script itself is pretty trivial so it didn't quench my quest for more Perl neither but at least it does quickly give the statistics I wanted.

The bad part is that I didn't want the statistics I got because it in spite of all our efforts the number of opened bugs in wxWidgets keeps increasing. The only good news is that the rate of increase seems to have decreased or at least stabilized: if in 2009 we had 271 new bugs (computed as the difference between 1270 opened and 145 reopened ones and 1144 closed ones), in 2010 we had "only" 275 new bugs and so far in 2011 we have only 20 news ones (and it's not as people got simply tired of reporting them, there were still 521 newly opened bugs since the beginning of the year). But in all, we still have 544 more bugs today than in May 2008 when Trac statistics begin so the journey towards bug-free future remains long...

Out of curiosity I also collected the month statistics using the following intimidating command combining the wonders of zsh short loop syntax and GNU date relative dates support:

% for ((year=2008;$year<=2011;year++)); \
for ((i=1;$i<=12;i++)); \
./trac-ticket-stats --csv trac.wxwidgets.org $year-$i-01 \
`date --date="1 day ago 1 month $year-$i-01" +%F`

and discovered somewhat surprising variations between the months: on average, we get 60 net new tickets per month but there are some outliers. In Januaries there are almost no new bugs (2) while in October there are 112 of them. Looking at the number of bugs created, more bugs are created in March, October and July (which are very close) while wxWidgets users seem to be on vacation in June when almost twice less bugs are opened. As for us, the developers, we seem to start every new year with good resolutions as January is the month with by far the most bug fixes while by June working on them really loses its appeal and two times fewer of them are resolved.
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