In the past several years there has been a considerable amount of research effort devoted to developing models of individual resource consumption during the software development process. Since many conditions affect individual resource consumption during the software development process, including several which are difficult if not impossible to quantify, it is our contention that a stochastic model is more appropriate than a deterministic model.
In order to test our hypothesis we conducted an experiment based upon several student programming assignments. Data from this experiment is used to demonstrate that the two parameter Log-Normal distribution is appropriate for describing the probabilistic behavior of the random variable 'resource consumption'. In addition we present a theoretic argument for the applicability of the Log-Normal distribution based on the concept of a proportional effects model for the growth of a program.
McNicholl, Daniel G. and Magel, Kenneth, "Stochastic Modeling of Individual Resource Consumption during the Programming Phase of Software Development" (1982). Computer Science Technical Reports. 96.
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