Code Kingdoms

January 26, 2011

Chapter 8 – Open Teams

A code kingdom occurs when a small number of people, usually just one, want to own an area of the code and keep everyone else out. The king or queen of that code will work hard to make sure they maintain complete control over the code and strongly discourage anyone else from looking at it.

The Subversion team tracks code kingdoms with a metric they call the “bus factor.” It tracks how many people need to be hit by a bus before all knowledge of a feature or subsystem is lost. The higher your bus factor the more redundancy you have and the closer you will be to having an open team.

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