Source code is a mixed software artifact, containing information for both the compiler and the developers. While programming language grammar dictates how the source code is written, developers have a lot of freedom in writing identifiers and comments. These are intentional in nature and become means of communication between developers. The goal of this paper is to analyze how the source code vocabulary changes during evolution, through an exploratory study of two software systems. Specifically, we collected data to answer a set of questions about the vocabulary evolution, such as: How does the size of the source code vocabulary evolve over time? What do most frequent terms refer to? Are new identifiers introducing new terms? Are there terms shared between different types of identifiers and comments? Are new and deleted terms in a type of identifiers mirrored in other types of identifiers or in comments?

Analyzing the Evolution of the Source Code Vocabulary

Abebe, Surafel Lemma;Tonella, Paolo;
2009

Abstract

Source code is a mixed software artifact, containing information for both the compiler and the developers. While programming language grammar dictates how the source code is written, developers have a lot of freedom in writing identifiers and comments. These are intentional in nature and become means of communication between developers. The goal of this paper is to analyze how the source code vocabulary changes during evolution, through an exploratory study of two software systems. Specifically, we collected data to answer a set of questions about the vocabulary evolution, such as: How does the size of the source code vocabulary evolve over time? What do most frequent terms refer to? Are new identifiers introducing new terms? Are there terms shared between different types of identifiers and comments? Are new and deleted terms in a type of identifiers mirrored in other types of identifiers or in comments?
9780769535890
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11582/4671
 Attenzione

Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo

Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
social impact