9th IEEE International Conference on Collaborative Computing: Networking, Applications and Worksharing

Research Article

Improving Textual Merge Result

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  • @INPROCEEDINGS{10.4108/icst.collaboratecom.2013.254103,
        author={Mehdi Ahmed Nacer and Pascal Urso and Fran\`{e}ois Charoy},
        title={Improving Textual Merge Result},
        proceedings={9th IEEE International Conference on Collaborative Computing: Networking, Applications and Worksharing},
        keywords={operational transformation collaborative editing merging interfering merge procedure conflicts},
  • Mehdi Ahmed Nacer
    Pascal Urso
    François Charoy
    Year: 2013
    Improving Textual Merge Result
    DOI: 10.4108/icst.collaboratecom.2013.254103
Mehdi Ahmed Nacer1,*, Pascal Urso1, François Charoy1
  • 1: Loria -INRIA-
*Contact email: mehdi.ahmed-nacer@loria.fr


In asynchronous collaborative systems, merging is an essential component. It allows to reconcile modifications made concurrently as well as managing software change through branching. The collaborative system is in charge to propose a merge result that includes user's modifications. The users now have to check and adapt this result. The adaptation should be as effort-less as possible, otherwise, the users may get frustrated and will quit the collaboration. The objective of this paper is to improve the result quality of the textual merge tool that constitutes the default merge tool of distributed version control systems. The basic idea is to study the behavior of the concurrent modifications during merge procedure. We identified when the existing merge techniques under-perform, and we propose solutions to improve the quality of the merge. We finally compare with the traditional merge tool through a large corpus of collaborative editing.