I gave a presentation at the December 2019 Meetup of RUG::B (the Ruby User Group Berlin).
Topic: Repo-Rot is Real
I help to maintain a GitHub org of 350 engineers and 3100 repos. Often I wonder: What can we do to maintain some sanity with this amount of people, teams, and repos?
The longer a team exists, the more software components and repos they tend to have. How do you know, which of those are actively maintained, and which ones are not (they are rotting)?
This talk explored what I call “repo rot”, which effect it has on your team/company, and what you can do about it.
I also described an experiment that I ran with my teams, and what we learned from it.
Costs of Repo-Rot
- For the Company
- maintaining documentation and security standards becomes harder
- tedious handover of components
- For the Team
- Which repos matter for a new hire?
- Dead code (unused repos) makes code search on GitHub ineffective
- For the Individual
- Fewer InnerSource contributions (PRs across teams)
- Broken-Window effect
No video was recorded at the meetup and I didn’t share any slides yet either. However if the topic sounds interesting to you just ask, and I am happy to share more.