In Chapter 33, Personal Character of Code Complete (Second ed.) McConnell cites some studies such as those listed below in support of the assertion that 10-1 improvement is possible from efforts in improving our programming as a result of personal determination to improve.
- Sackman, Erikson, and Grant 1968;
- Curtis 1981; Mills 1983;
- DeMarco and Lister 1985;
- Curtis et al. 1986;
- Card 1987;
- Valett and McGarry 1989
As you can see from the list above, these studies are quite dated. Have more recent studies been conducted that studied potential for improvement in programming efficacy? How do the findings compare to McConnell's research? What have these studies revealed about the progress modern methods and tools had in our ability to program?