Seminal Papers in Software Engineering: The Carnegie Mellon Canonical Collection

Mary Shaw (editor), Jonathan Aldrich, Travis D. Breaux,
David Garlan, James D. Herbsleb, Christian Kästner, Claire Le Goues, William L. Scherlis

To understand the context of current research, it is essential to understand how current results evolved from early fundamental papers. These classic papers develop timeless ideas that transcend technology changes, and the ideas embodied in their solutions often apply to current problems (and, indeed, are reinvented by researchers who are ignorant of the classic literature).